This weekend starts with an evening, family-friendly shopping experience at a buzzy Heights spot and ends with a comedy festival from one of Houston's most ardent supporters — who happens to be a rap star.
Speaking of music, a legendary Houston DJ showcases a multi-disciplinary love letter to his home town and the world, with an orchestra, rappers, spoken word visuals, and more at a vaunted local opera house. (We love that tickets are only $5.)
A hilarious comic from 30 Rock, SNL, and more visits town, while gaming fans can enjoy a celebration of an epic on the big screen paired with a live Houston Symphony performance.
Enjoy; here are the best bets for your weekend.
Thursday, July 21
M-K-T Sunset Market
Dubbed a "feel-good market," this weeknight, family-friendly event at the buzzy Heights development is a clever spin on the usual farmers market. Shoppers can nosh on charcuterie and other select bites, catch live music, take part in face-painting on the lawn, or grab a made-to-go meal by one of Houston’s favorite chefs. For a full rundown on participants, check out the M-K-T Heights Instagram page. 5 pm.
McKay Otto and Larry Bell opening reception at Nancy Littlejohn Fine Art
Head over to Nancy Littlejohn Fine Art for McKay Otto's solo exhibition "Vanishing Vibrations" and, in the viewing room, Larry Bell's solo exhibition "Vapors." Texas artist Otto's current body of work may serve as a metaphor for humanity’s capacity to transcend itself. As for Bell, one of the most renowned and influential artists to emerge from the LA art scene of the 1960s, he is known foremost for his refined surface treatment of glass and explorations of light, reflection and shadow through the material. Through Saturday, August 20. 6 pm.
4th Wall Theatre Company presents Shakespeare's Twelfth Night
All this weekend, 4th Wall Theatre Company presents the Summer Shakes Showcase production of William Shakespeare's farcical love story, featuring performances from students of the Juilliard Drama School and Houston-area high schools. Summer Shakes is a rigorous, Shakespearean actor training program, hosted by 4th Wall. Philip Lehl, artistic director of 4th Wall and alumnus of Juilliard, serves as the program director. 7:30 pm (3 pm Sunday).
Friday, July 22
Houston Horror Film Festival
Have you ever wanted to talk to Rachel True, one of the stars of the '90s teen-witch movie The Craft? Well, you'll have a chance at this three-day convention and fan expo, which will include over 70+ horror films, celebrity special guests, and special Q&A panels. The goal is for fans to have an opportunity to mingle with some familiar names in the horror genre. There will also be over 100 vendors, artists, horror memorabilia, filmmakers, apparel, authors and more. 4 pm (11 am Saturday & Sunday).
"Earthly Delights" opening reception at Grogan Gallery
Grogan Gallery will celebrate its one-year anniversary with its latest group show. The show is a celebration of natural wonders, featuring artwork from Josh Brown, Taryn Brown, Jennifer John, Juan Carlos Navarro, Nick Kriefall, and Elisabeth Ladwig. There will also be live music by jazz saxophone player Zach Spruill, light bites, and a festive champagne toast. Through Friday, September 9. 6 pm.
Houston Symphony presents Distant Worlds: Music from Final Fantasy
Launched in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of Final Fantasy, this concert tour features the music of iconic, Japanese video game composer Nobuo Uematsu. This two-night, multimedia experience combines stirring screen images to match the soaring emotions of a symphony orchestra, performing music from Square Enix’s world-renowned Final Fantasy video game series. 7:30 pm.
Alley Theatre presents Clue
It’s a dark and stormy night, and you’ve been invited to a dinner party. Murder and blackmail are on the menu when six guests assemble at Boddy Manor for a night they’ll never forget — if they make it out alive. If you're a fan of the classic board game and/or that crazy 1985 movie adaptation, this is the ultimate whodunit that will leave you dying of laughter and keep you guessing until the final twist. Through Sunday, August 28. 8 pm (2:30 and 7:30 pm Sunday).
Saturday, July 23
38th Biannual Bridal Extravaganza Show
The largest bridal planning showcase in the U.S., will return with the most fashion shows ever. Brides, bridesmaids, mothers-of-the-bride, grooms, family, and wedding planners will have their pick of over 200 vendors that cater exclusively to the wedding industry. The show will feature cake samples, décor, flowers, 13 fashion shows, multiple Instagram walls for selfies, speaker presentations on the latest bridal fashion and trends, and entertainment from Houston’s top wedding professionals. 10 am (11 am Sunday).
WGF Studios presents 3 the Hard Way Urban Art Show
Over at the Art is an Asset store on North Loop, this art show will be a feast of the hip-hop elements. Three artists — Deck, Gear and Dense — will be showing off their work. (Yes, those are three different people and that's what they go by.) Rapper K.A.Y.O Da Konspiracy will do a live performance, B-Boy Craig will be spinning tunes and Just Sneaux will be selling authentic, New Orleans snowballs. 5 pm.
The Gilbert & Sullivan Society of Houston presents H.M.S Pinafore
For the next two weekends, the Gilbert & Sullivan Society of Houston will celebrate 70 years of productions with this opera, featuring comedic elements filled with love, laughter and satire. After participating in Gilbert & Sullivan’s summer productions for the last 40 years, this will be Alistair Donkin’s final production. This makes it the last opportunity for Houstonians to see this world-class thespian in one of his most famous roles. 7 pm (2:30 pm Sunday).
DJ Sun's Loveletter Orchestra w/special guests Chris Dave & Fat Tony
Veteran Houston record spinner DJ Sun will be celebrating the release of Loveletter, his latest album, with a live show at University of Houston's Moores Opera House. Sun, along with conductor Marlon Chen and a live orchestra, will be doing the whole album, along with guest appearances from Chris Dave and the Drumheadz, Tim Ruiz, Fat Tony and others. Oakland's DJ Platurn will be spinning music during a pre-show reception at 6:30 pm. Bonus: Tickets are only $5. 8 pm.
Tracy Morgan: No Disrespect
Along with being a master at morning show appearances, Tracy Morgan is one of the most well-respected comedians in his field, known for his roles across seven seasons of 30 Rock and seven seasons of Saturday Night Live. You might have seen him recently starring in TBS’s The Last O.G. and co-starring alongside fellow SNL vets Eddie Murphy and Leslie Jones in Coming 2 America. Catch him live — you may just get pregnant! 8 pm.
Sunday, July 24
National Tequila Day at Cyclone Anaya's
Since National Tequila Day is this Sunday, head over to your nearest Cyclone Anaya's. There will be tequila specials (now through August) at all six locations across town. Specials include the Avión Mexican Martini for $15, made with Avión Silver, Cointreau, lime juice and olive juice served tableside. You can also order a special Avión Tequila Flight for $26, featuring samples of Avión Cristalino, Avión Reposado and Avión 44 Tequila. 10 am.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston presents Baby Face
One of the raciest movies of the early 1930s, this 1933 picture has been considered the Citizen Kane of Hollywood’s Pre-Code era—before the censorship brought by the Motion Picture Production Code. Barbara Stanwyck plays the exploited daughter of a speakeasy owner. After her father dies, she moves to New York City and turns the tables, using her brains and sexuality to move up the economic ladder. Presented (in glorious 35mm!) by film historian Bruce Goldstein via Zoom. 1 pm.
Trae Tha Truth presents Funny By Nature Comedy Festival
Houston rapper, record executive, and noted benefactor Trae Tha Truth, a prominent member of the Texas hip-hop scene, will host this comedy festival, as part of his TraeDay Holiday Weekend. Scheduled to appear are Karlouis Miller and Chico Bean from Wild N' Out & The 85 South Show, Blaq Ron, Money Bag Mafia, ThatBoyFunny, Daphnique Springs, Reedo Brown, and some special surprise guests. Proceeds from the event benefit Trae Tha Truth’s charity, Angel By Nature. 6 pm.