It's a comedy and music weekend in Houston, as most of the events to make our list focus on one or the other. They include a concert with two enigmatic female singers, a take-no-prisoners female comedian, a comedy legend helping raise money for local theater and more.
Below are the best options for your precious free time Thursday through Sunday. Don't like what you see? Lucky for you, we have a much longer list of the city's best events.
Thursday, May 7
Lana Del Rey in concert with Courtney Love
Houstonians will get the first opportunity to see what the unique pairing of Lana Del Rey and Courtney Love will look like when they kick off their tour at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion. Del Rey is still riding high on the release of her latest album, Ultraviolence, while Love will perform in the wake of the release of the stellar documentary Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck.
Boz Scaggs in concert with Rayland Baxter
The long and storied life of Boz Scaggs, who came to fame as a member of the Steve Miller Band before forging his own successful solo career, continues with this stop at the Stafford Centre. Scaggs isn't relying on his old hits, though, as he comes to town in support of his 2015 album, A Fool to Care. He'll be joined by opening act Rayland Baxter.
Friday, May 8
Houston Symphony presents Beethoven and Bartok
The 2014-2015 Houston Symphony season winds down with this concert, which will be split between two different locations. Taking place Friday at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion and Saturday and Sunday at Jones Hall, you can witness violinist James Ehnes take on Beethoven's glorious Violin Concerto and revel in Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra.
Wanda Sykes in concert
If you've ever seen Wanda Sykes on shows like Curb Your Enthusiasm or The New Adventures of Old Christine, you know that she's type of comedian and actress who can more than hold her own against other strong personalities. Be prepared for a no-holds-barred set when she performs at the Bayou Music Center.
Saturday, May 9
This inaugural festival at Hermann Park will showcase the best in Texas music on three stages, along with a variety of Lone Star cuisine and culture. Texas country superstar Kevin Fowler will headline the festival alongside more than 25 other Texas bands, and visitors can sample more than 100 brands of Texas food, beer, wine and spirits.
2015 Alley Theatre Ball "Much Ado About the Alley" with Jay Leno
Believe it or not, it's only been a little over a year since Jay Leno ended his reign as host of the Tonight Show. But the comedian remains a tireless performer, something he'll continue as he headlines Alley Theatre's annual fundraising ball at NRG Stadium. The event will also feature an art auction, dancing and music from the David Caceres Orchestra.
Ed Kowalczyk in concert
It was not a pretty ending between Ed Kowalczyk and his former band Live, as his bandmates sued the lead singer and accused him of being a prima donna. But Kowalczyk obviously still has fond memories of the band, as he'll use this concert at House of Blues Houston to perform their breakout album Throwing Copper in its entirety acoustically.
Sunday, May 10
Comedy show: Mo'Nique and Friends
Comedian Mo'Nique reached unexpected heights as the brutal mother of Gabourey Sidibe in 2009's Precious. Although she proved that she can do drama with the best of them, it's comedy where she still maintains her popularity, something she'll show with this special event at Arena Theatre alongside a few of her funny friends.