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Your weekly guide to Houston: Five (plus) don't-miss events, professional sexy burlesque show included

Your weekly guide to Houston: 5 don't-miss events with sexy burlesque

Hot Box Girls
Founded by Texan Rebecca Greenstein, the Hot Box Girls gets intimate with the audience (but not that intimate). Courtesy of the artists
Evelyn's Park Conservancy
"Pop-Up in the Park" at Evelyn's Park Conservancy also includes food trucks that the whole family will enjoy. Courtesy of Evelyn's Park Conservancy/Facebook
Musiqa presents "Myths and Legends"
Musiqa continues to win awards from Chamber Music America, ASCAP and the National Endowment for the Arts. Courtesy of Musiqa
River Oaks Chamber Orchestra presents "Beer and Brass"
ROCO's "Beer and Brass" presents tunes that encourage brotherhood and merriment over Saint Arnold Brewing Co. brews. Courtesy of River Oaks Chamber Orchestra/Facebook
Hot Box Girls
Evelyn's Park Conservancy
Musiqa presents "Myths and Legends"
River Oaks Chamber Orchestra presents "Beer and Brass"

January is back with a vengeance with events that have me scratching my head as I try to schedule my artsy adventures. With so much on the calendar, this week's suggestions only cover a slice of what's keeping Houstonians off their couches and out on the streets.

So here we go. My suggestions include a concert with beer, criminal shadow puppets, girls with hot boxes, tunes of today and a shopping event brimming with local goodness.

River Oaks Chamber Orchestra presents "Beer and Brass"

La Traviata's "Brindisi" (the first line of which translates to "Let us drink from the goblets of joy") and Don Giovanni's "Finch'han dal vino" (do you need more intel than there's vino in the title?) are just two quick examples off the top of my head that pretty much tell you that drinking and classical music are bros.

While I can't vouch that those selections are on tap for ROCO's "Beer and Brass" sudsy musicale, the friendly brass quintet — no brassholes here — will perform tunes, some of which have been arranged by ROCO violinist Lorento Golofeev, that encourage brotherhood (fine, sisterhood also) and merriment over Saint Arnold Brewing Company brews.

The skinny: Thursday, 6 p.m.; Saint Arnold Brewing Company.; individual tickets start at $35.

BooTown presents Death and a Roller Coaster

It's hard not to shake my head when info on a BooTown show comes through my desk. Only because this creative troupe always does something unexpected. Such as using shadow puppets to tell a story of murder, pyromania and thrill rides that's set in a small Texas town. Lots of new talent is featured in this second installment of BooTown's River bottom Series.

The skinny: Through Jan. 24; various locations; performances are pay-what-you-can, $10 suggested ticket price.

Society for the Performing Arts presents the Hot Box Girls

You better hurry up and snatch tickets for this sassy number as many sections are already sold out. And who would be surprised by this show's popularity? It's top-notch sexy burlesque, after all, a genre that's as in vogue now as it was during the Roaring '20s.

Founded by Texan Rebecca Greenstein, this provocative group gets intimate with the audience (but not that intimate).

The skinny: Saturday, 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.; Jones Hall; tickets start at $63.

Musiqa presents "Myths and Legends"

If you'd rather experience something that's more today and now, then Musiqa is your ticket to present-day art experiences with a strong local connection. As in many of the avant garde presenter's performances, concert goers can expect world premieres that resonate with 21st century zeitgeist.

Without going into too much detail about the program (which you can peruse here), know that the high caliber, thoughtful compositions are appropriately matched with performers who give it their all on stage. It's why Musiqa continues to win awards from Chamber Music America, ASCAP and the National Endowment for the Arts.

The skinny: Saturday, 7:30 p.m.; Hobby Center for the Performing Arts; tickets are $20 - $40.

"Pop-Up in the Park" benefiting Evelyn's Park Conservancy

Some of us are suffering from retail therapy withdrawal now that the December shopping frenzy is bye bye, particularly with the myriad pop up markets that offered great buys from local merchants during the holidays. Get your fix now with the 2015 reprise of Evelyn's Park Conservancy's "Pop-Up in the Park" event that features vendors such as Cuteheads, ZayZak Designs, A to Zen Meditation, EcoFab, Tomboy Pretty, Bula Ties and Devon Center for the Visual and Expressive Arts

The skinny: Saturday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Evelyn's Park; free event.

Staff writer and resident gourmand Eric Sandler's pick: Hey Baetender

Eric says: "Fresh off her stint as bar manager at LA's white hot cocktail bar Harvard & Stone, native Houstonian and super-talented bartender Yael Vengroff will be making drinks at two events this weekend. On Thursday, she'll be at Bad News Bar reprising the weekly "Bitters & Soda" cocktail pop-up she used to conduct at Fitzgerald's with Bad News owner Justin Burrow. On Friday, Harvard and Stone colleague Joey Bernardo joins Vengroff for cocktails made from the Pernod Ricard portfolio.

Whatever she concocts is worth drinking, so find a designated driver and catch Vengroff before she jets off her to next gig." 

The skinny: Friday, 5 p.m.- 9 p.m.; Captain Foxheart's Bad News Bar & Spirit Lodge; drink prices TBA.