2Do this week, May 11-17: Cultural events around Pittsburgh


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TODAY

Happy Mother's Day! To celebrate, check out a vocal concert featuring mezzo-soprano Amanda Russo, a Forest Hills native and doctoral student at Indiana University, and tenor Ben Werley, a Ben Avon resident and Indiana graduate. They will perform cabaret songs, operatic pieces and musical theater tunes at Community Presbyterian Church of Ben Avon, 7501 Church Ave., at 4 p.m. They will be accompanied by pianist Jean Anderson Collier, a professor at New England Conservatory. More at 412-761-1233.

TODAY

The Carnivalesque Roadshow, a spectacle of burlesque, circus and sideshow, premieres at The Rex Theater, 1602 E. Carson St., South Side, at 8 p.m. This 21-and-over show offers an immersive experience into the enticing world of acrobats, freaks, roustabouts, barkers, dandies and women of questionable virtue. Doors open at 7 p.m., the Midway at 7:30 p.m. For more info and tickets, $15 in advance, $17 at the door, rex.greyareaprod.com or 412-381-6811.

MONDAY

John Dear, a longtime peace activist and author of more than 30 books, speaks at 7 p.m. Monday at St. Mary of the Mount Church, Mount Washington.

Mr. Dear, 54, of Albuquerque, N.M., has organized and participated in nonviolent campaigns and has been arrested on more than 75 occasions. His newest book, "The Nonviolent Life," focuses on three key ways to be nonviolent. He will sign copies of the book after his talk.

A recipient of several peace awards, the author was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2008 by Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

In his nomination, Archbishop Tutu wrote, "He has led by example through his actions and in his writings and in numerous sermons, speeches and demonstrations. He believes that peace is not something static but rather to make peace is to be engaged, mind body and spirit. His teaching is to love yourself, to love your neighbor, your enemy and to love the world and to understand that profound responsibility."

The event is free and open to the public.

For more information, 412-361-3022 or www.thomasmertoncenter.org.

FRIDAY

Culture Club at Carnegie Museum of Art will feature the opening of the exhibition "Stray Light" in the Forum Gallery, from 5:30 to 9 p.m. The exhibition comprises color photography, sculpture and a video installation by David Hartt reflecting on the iconic Chicago headquarters of the Johnson Publishing Company. At 6:30 p.m. a discussion will be held in the museum theater with Mr. Hartt; Felix Burrichter, editor and creative director of PIN-UP; and Dan Byers, Carnegie curator of modern and contemporary art. It will be followed by a reception with cash bar. The gallery remains open until 9 p.m. Also present will be artists-in-residence Melissa Catanese and Ed Panar of The Sandbox, part of the Hillman Photography Initiative. Free with museum admission. Information: 412-662-3131 or www.cmoa.org.

FRIDAY-SATURDAY

"Sundiata" will be performed by the Balafon West African Dance Ensemble at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater, 5941 Penn Ave., East Liberty, at 8 p.m. "Sundiata" is the tale of a fabled hero from ancient Mali. Born to the disfigured wife of a king, he is unable to walk from birth. Destined to help his people, Sundiata overcomes great odds to become the beloved leader of a great African empire. The ensemble and special guests bring this epic tale to life through live African music, spirited song and soul inspiring dance. This event is part of the Black River African Dance Conference. For tickets -- $20 in advance, $25 at the door, $10 students -- www.kelly-strayhorn.org.

SATURDAY

An intimate conversation, "The Sandbox: Social Studies With Eline Mugaas and Tina Kukielski," will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. Saturday at Carnegie Museum of Art, part of the Hillman Photography Initiative. Ms. Kukielski is an Initiative curator. Ms. Mugaas, an Oslo-based artist, is cofounder and maker of the zine series ALBUM#. They'll discuss the zine's recurring themes of desire, melancholy, motherhood, nudity and lonely men. A reception with coffee and cookies will follow. Free with museum admission. Information: 412-662-3131 or www.cmoa.org.

SATURDAY

Braddock Mayor John Fetterman will be monologist in Unplanned Comedy Live's signature show, "MONDO!," at 9 p.m. at Union Pig and Chicken's performance space, 220 N. Highland Ave., East Liberty. Mr. Fetterman will share thoughts and stories as fodder for improvised scenes. Before the main show, "Make Nice Boom" will feature the performance of three improv teams -- returning champion Yeah, Those Guys with challengers Well Known Strangers and Hotel Nowhere -- at 8 p.m. The audience will vote for the favorite team and the victorious improvisers return in June to take on two new teams. Admission $10 for both shows. Info: www.unplannedcomedy.com or 412-363-PORK.


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