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What’s happening in the arts world

The 2020 photo "Quarantine Moments" is part of Kledia Spiro's solo exhibition "Too (un)Familiar?"
The 2020 photo "Quarantine Moments" is part of Kledia Spiro's solo exhibition "Too (un)Familiar?"Kledia Spiro


Pop & Rock

ONCE VIRTUAL VENUE Things are getting fuzzy at Once Virtual Venue this weekend with a triple bill of doomy punks the Freqs, the starry shoegaze of Lilac Queen, and the high-spirited, noisy Horsehands. April 23, 8 p.m. www.oncesomerville.com

BIG THIEF The soft and scorching indie rock band airs their last pre-pandemic performance, from Columbus, Ohio. April 29, 7 p.m. www.noonchorus.com



MUSICIANS OF THE OLD POST ROAD The Boston-based period instrument band gathers at Worcester’s Trinity Lutheran Church for a livestream season finale, featuring the energetic and eminently danceable music of the French Baroque period. April 24, 7:30 p.m. www.oldpostroad.org




HYPE MAN: A BREAK BEAT PLAY The issues of racial injustice at the play’s heart remain wrenchingly current, adding to the impact of this superb new streaming version of Idris Goodwin’s play. Directed with imaginative artistry by John Oluwole ADEkoje and Shawn LaCount, “Hype Man” is powered by knockout performances from the original cast of Kadahj Bennett, Rachel Cognata, and Michael Knowlton as members of a rising hip-hop trio rocked by the police shooting of an unarmed Black youth. Company One Theatre and American Repertory Theater. Streaming through May 6. Tickets $25 with pay-what-you-can option. www.americanrepertorytheater.org or 617-547-8300

OTHELLO Joe Wilson Jr. stars as the title figure in Shakespeare’s tragedy, presented online by Actors’ Shakespeare Project as part of its “Holding the Mirror Up: Classics Through a BIPOC Lens” series. Translated into contemporary English by playwright Mfoniso Udofia, directed by Christopher V. Edwards, and featuring Jesse Hinson as Iago and Katherine Schaber as Desdemona. April 26-May 9. Tickets are free, but registration is required, at www.actorsshakespeareproject.org

BOSTON THEATER MARATHON XXIII: SPECIAL ZOOM EDITION Taking place online for the second year in a row due to the pandemic, this annual event showcases 50 10-minute plays, all written by New England playwrights and presented by New England theater companies. The readings take place at noon Mondays through Saturdays, with one play per day, and a question-and-answer session after each reading. Presented by Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. Through May 28. Free, but audiences are “encouraged to donate to participating theatre companies and/or to the Theatre Community Benevolent Fund.” www.bostonplaywrights.org




DANCE CAMERA WEST VIRTUAL FILM FESTIVAL This year’s lineup is a terrific collection of 31 films ranging from ensemble dances in spectacular man-made (see “Beast”) and natural settings (“Sedimented Here” and the underwater “Liminality”) to introspective solos (“Earth Odyssey”) that reflect a year of sheltering at home. Offered through a partnership with OVID.TV, the festival helps create revenue for artists while offering audiences a dazzling array of dance. Worth every penny. Through May 1. $12 for seven-day viewing access. www.ovid.tv/products/dance-camera-west-2021


Visual Arts

WRITING THE FUTURE: BASQUIAT AND THE HIP HOP GENERATION The first show to link Jean-Michel Basquiat to his peers in New York’s burgeoning graffiti and hip-hop scene, this landmark exhibition enriches the experience of his famously expressive canvases with volumes of context about the world he lived in and the people he was closest to. The show was initially scheduled to close next month, but the MFA has extended it through July 25. Timed tickets required. 465 Huntington Ave. 617-267-9300, www.mfa.org



KLEDIA SPIRO: TOO (UN)FAMILIAR? Like many this last year, Spiro, a multimedia artist and weightlifter born in Albania, contemplated what home means. She rooted herself in the landscape of the Wachusett Reservoir, reflecting on the constancy of nature and the changes of an immigrant’s life. In photos and a video here, she ties the themes together, attempting to literally do what many children of immigrants do figuratively: Lift her parents up. Through May 2. Kingston Gallery. 450 Harrison Ave. 617-423-4113, www.kingstongallery.com




SELF CARE COMEDY Former Boston comedian Jamie Loftus (cohost of “The Bechdel Test” podcast and Emmy-nominated writer from “Robot Chicken” in 2020) is part of this stand-up Zoom showcase along with Los Angeles comedians Brent Weinbach and Ellington Wells. April 23, 10 p.m. Free ($10 suggested tip). https://nakedcomedy.org/selfcarecomedy

LENNY CLARKE Clarke plays a series at his home base in Saugus, doing two shows in the tent and one socially distanced inside early show on Saturday. With Kelly MacFarland and Greg Howell. April 23-24, 8:30 p.m. and April 24 at 7:30 p.m. $30. Giggles Comedy Club, 517 Broadway, Saugus. 781-233-9950, www.princerestaurant.com

IMPROV ASYLUM Pre-pandemic, Improv Asylum’s “Main Stage Show” was already a hot ticket. Its top troupe is back doing in-person, interactive improv shows at 50 percent of the smallish venue’s capacity, and seems to be picking up where it left off. The early Saturday show is sold out. April 23 at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. and April 24 at 5 p.m., 7:30 p.m., and 10 p.m. $29. Improv Asylum, 216 Hanover St., Boston. 617-263-6887, www.improvasylum.com




CHANGE IS IN THE AIR This year, the Umbrella Arts Center is celebrating Earth Week with an art walk. Following the spirit of the traditional Musketaquid Earth Day Parade, participants will walk through the town of Concord surrounded by art-themed outdoor artworks. For kids, there’s an Artfest activity sheet, complete with a coloring page, a map of the walk, and a list of family events. April 25-May 1. Free. theumbrellaarts.org

FLAP HOP CAW International Crow and Raven Appreciation Day is swooping into the Peabody Museum. Join museum educator Javier Marin to learn about bird characteristics or tune in for a read-aloud Tlingit tale and paper craft making with Andy Majewski. Make sure to hop or flap your way to this family-friendly event. April 27, 3 p.m. $3-$5. hmsc.harvard.edu

RUBY’S BIRDS STORY WALK Join the National Park Service and Boston Harbor Now for a story walk of “Ruby’s Birds,” written by Mya Thompson and illustrated by Claudia Dávila. At the Boston Harbor Islands Welcome Center, rangers will give young adventurers activity bags and stickers before they set off. April 24-25. Free. www.bostonharborislands.org