Arts

The week ahead: Music, theater, arts, events

Ron Weis’s “Wish You Were Here (golf course).”
Ron Weis’s “Wish You Were Here (golf course).”

MUSIC

Pop & Rock

ANNA NALICK In 2005 the California singer-songwriter scored with the hit “Breathe (2 AM),” which is still a staple on Triple A radio. Since then, Nalick has suffered some major-label woes, but has continued to write smart, interesting, and winsome tunes that should sound lovely in this cozy room. Jan. 21. 8 p.m. $20. Red Room at Café 939. 617-747-2261. www.berklee.edu/red-room-cafe-939

ALESSIA CARA The 19-year-old soul pop sensation from Canada is turning heads in the United States with her hit single “Here,” including a memorable performance of the gauzy homage to wallflowers on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” with the Roots. She’ll perform that tune and others from her debut album, “Know-It-All,” along with covers from Rihanna and Disclosure. Jan. 21. 6 p.m. $20. Brighton Music Hall. 800-745-3000. www.ticketmaster.com

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KELSEA BALLERINI The spunky pop country starlet made major strides in 2015, scoring big hits in “Love Me Like You Mean It” and “Dibs,” getting a nod of approval from Taylor Swift, several award nominations, and the distinction of winning Billboard’s Rising Star award. That the Knoxville, Tenn., native did all this in a format that has been particularly unwelcoming to female artists of late makes her one to watch.Jan. 22. 6 p.m. $20. Royale. 800-745-3000. www.ticketmaster.com SARAH RODMAN

Folk & World

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CANCELED DEL AND WOODY Trad-bluegrass master Del McCoury is the latest artist to be invited by Woody Guthrie's daughter, Nora, to add a new chapter to her father's legacy by setting unpublished lyrics from the Guthrie archives to music. Ahead of an upcoming album, McCoury and his crack band present the results this Saturday.

ELIADES OCHOA AND BARBARITO TORRES Touring ensemble Orquestra Buena Vista Social Club, which grew out of the famous album and film that brought Ochoa, Torres, and their contemporaries to the attention of the world, just finished its farewell tour, but evidently Ochoa and Torres have not said adios. They continue on, performing the Cuban styles that they've been playing for half a century. Jan. 23, 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $33.50-$63.50. Orpheum Theatre. 800-745-3000. www.ticketmaster.com

SMOOTH HOUND SMITH Male-female duo acts seem to be the flavor du jour, but interesting, inventive music based in blues and other roots forms makes this one — Caitlin Doyle, who sings and percusses, and Zack Smith, who plays everything else, much of it at the same time — stand out. Jan. 27, 9:30 p.m. Tickets: $8. Atwood's Tavern, Cambridge. 800-838-3006. www.brownpapertickets.com STUART MUNRO

Jazz & Blues

BILLY CHILDS: REIMAGINING LAURA NYRO At the tender age of 11, the accomplished jazz pianist Billy Childs was introduced by his older sister to the jazz- and Broadway-influenced pop songs of singer-songwriter Laura Nyro. Her music struck a chord within him that has continued to reverberate, resulting in his 2014 Grammy Award-winning tribute, “Map to the Treasure.” With the Parker Quartet and vocalists Becca Stevens and Alicia Olatuja. Jan. 22, 8 p.m. Tickets: $30-$60. Sanders Theatre, Harvard University. 617-482-6661. www.celebrityseries.org

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JAN MARIE & THE MEAN REDS The sultry singer and her five-piece band play a soulful and swinging mixture of jazz, blues, and R&B that satisfies both listeners and dancers. Jan. 23, 9 p.m. Tickets: $10. Ryles, 212 Hampshire St., Cambridge. 617-876-9330. www.rylesjazz.com

DONNY MCCASLIN’S FAST FUTURE The commanding tenor saxophonist has performed and recorded with the likes of Gary Burton, Dave Douglas, Maria Schneider, and David Bowie — who drafted this very band for what became his final album. With keyboardist Jason Lindner, bassist Tim Lefebvre, and drummer Mark Guiliana. Jan. 27, 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $25. Regattabar. 617-395-7757, www.regattabarjazz.com KEVIN LOWENTHAL

Classical

BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Ludovic Morlot will be back on the podium this week, stepping in for an indisposed Jiri Belohlavek. The all-Czech program remains the same: Martinu’s Symphony No. 6, “The Moldau” by Smetana, and Dvorak’s Cello Concerto with Johannes Moser as soloist. Jan. 21-23, Symphony Hall. 617-266-1200, www.bso.org

BOSTON MODERN ORCHESTRA PROJECT What do today’s composers have to say about Bach’s “Brandenburg” Concertos? Plenty, it turns out. Under Gil Rose’s baton, BMOP will perform a set of six recent works, each inspired by one of Bach’s originals. The composers of these “New Brandenburgs” are Paul Moravec, Christopher Theofanidis, Melinda Wagner, Peter Maxwell Davies, Aaron Jay Kernis, and Stephen Hartke. Jan. 22, 8 p.m., Jordan Hall. 781-324-0396, www.bmop.org

ORCHESTRE NATIONAL DE FRANCE Before he decamps for the Concertgebouw, conductor Daniele Gatti is taking his orchestra on one last US tour. It includes a stop in Boston, where he will lead repertoire staples by Debussy and Tchaikovsky as well as Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23. Pianist Alexandre Tharaud will be the soloist. Jan. 24, 3 p.m., Symphony Hall. 617-482-6661, www.celebrityseries.org

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JEREMY EICHLER

ARTS

Theater

DISGRACED Ayad Akhtar’s Pulitzer-winning drama about a Pakistani-American attorney who has repudiated his Islamic faith plunges right into the choppy currents of contemporary discourse. Akhtar finds tragedy in the plight of a man locked in an unwinnable war with himself, his heritage, and the assumptions the wider world makes about him. Directed by Gordon Edelstein. Through Feb. 7. Huntington Theatre Company in association with Long Wharf Theatre at BU Theatre, Boston. 617-266-0800, www.huntingtontheatre.org

SONDHEIM ON SONDHEIM Leigh Barrett and Aimee Doherty are the standouts among the eight-member cast of this fine revue, though the real star is Sondheim himself. The nonpareil composer-lyricist pops up frequently in videotaped interviews, offering an illuminating blend of backstage anecdotes, autobiographical insights, and glimpses of his creative process. Directed by Spiro Veloudos, with choreography and musical staging by Ilyse Robbins. Through Feb. 21. Lyric Stage Company of Boston. 617-585-5678, www.lyricstage.com

VIOLET Boston Conservatory graduate Alison McCartan shines as a young North Carolina woman who takes a bus journey across the South in 1964, doggedly clinging to the conviction that a TV preacher can heal her disfigured face. Director Paul Daigneault skillfully pulls together the disparate pieces of this idiosyncratic musical, crafting a production that flows lucidly between present and past, illusion and reality. Through Feb. 6. SpeakEasy Stage Company, at Wimberly Theatre, Calderwood Pavilion, Boston Center for the Arts. 617-933-8600, www.speakeasystage.com

DON AUCOIN

Dance

CATALYSTS This new Dance Complex initiative features three weekends of performances showcasing five choreographers chosen for their unique artistic voices and commitment toward deepening how we experience dance: Chavi Bansal, Callie Chapman, Michael Figueroa, Sarah Mae Gibbons, and Kat Nasti. A different lineup each night. Jan. 23-Feb. 6, $15-$30 single show, $36-$75 for one show each weekend. Dance Complex, Cambridge. 617-547-9363, www.dancecomplex.org

FROM REFUGEE CAMP TO PROJECT Sokeo Ros is one of the most talented longtime performers in the Everett organization, and in this original dance-theater work, he traces his powerful journey from post-Khmer Rouge Cambodia to the poverty of an American ghetto to his remarkable self-discovery through artistic expression. Through Jan. 24, $20 (Sundays are pay what you can). Everett Stage, Providence. 401-831-9479, www.everettri.org

AN EVENING OF JAZZ & TAP Tap maven Drika Overton and dancers Gay Nardone and Ryan Casey (collectively known as The Tall Tribe) are joined by special guest Kelly Kaleta and the musical trio of Overton’s longtime collaborator Paul Arslanian in a concert of classic repertory and original work. Should be a blast. Jan. 23, 7:30 p.m., $20-$25. Dance Hall, Kittery, Maine. 207-703-2083, www.thedancehallkittery.org

KAREN CAMPBELL

Galleries

BETSY WEIS: LANDSCAPE IS A VERB, RON WEIS: WISH YOU WERE HERE Married artists, working independently — Betsy as a photographer, Ron as a painter — find common ground in this question: How do landscapes weave with our inner lives? Pictured: Ron Weis’s “Wish You Were Here (golf course).’’ Through Feb. 24. Rafius Fane Gallery, 460 Harrison Ave. 508-843-2184, www.rafiusfanegallery.com

BRINK V2: SPACE AND INTIMACY Contemporary sculpture is less about making discrete objects and more about using space to create meaning. This second exhibition in the BCA’s series spotlighting emerging artists investigates sculpture today. Through March 26. Mills Gallery, Boston Center for the Arts, 551 Tremont St. 617-426-5000, www.bcaonline.org

YOU ARE HERE Five artists consider the concept of place, which can be elusive even if you stick a pin in a map. Mental state, mediating technologies, and history shape our perceptions of a given spot. Pam Campanaro curates. Through March 26. New Art Center, 61 Washington Park, Newtonville. 617-964-3424, www.newartcenter.org

CATE McQUAID

Museums

ORNAMENT AND ILLUSION: CARLO CRIVELLI AND VENICE The first show dedicated to the great Renaissance painter in the US. The exhibition reunites four of the six sections of Crivelli’s Porto San Giorgio Altarpiece, and gathers together 20 other Crivelli paintings. Through Monday. Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. 617-566-1401, www.gardnermuseum.org

DRAWING REDEFINED: RONI HORN, ESTHER KLAES, JOELLE TUERLINCKX, RICHARD TUTTLE, AND JORINDE VOIGT Ideas of drawing are extended into sculpture, photography, and other media by this quintet of contemporary artists. Through March 20. DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln. 781-259-8355, www.decordova.org

WARHOL AND MAPPLETHORPE: GUISE AND DOLLS An exploration of the rich relationship between the work of both artists, focusing on their New York milieu in the 1970s and ’80s. Through Sunday. Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford. 860-278-2670, www.thewadsworth.org

SEBASTIAN SMEE

EVENTS

Comedy

PULP FRICTION A comic burlesque tribute to the movies of Quentin Tarantino, from the founder of the horror burlesque troupe The Slaughterhouse Sweethearts. Complete with Jack Rabbit Slim’s twist contest and $5 milkshakes. Jan. 22, 8 p.m. $13-$20. Oberon, 2 Arrow St., Cambridge. 617-496-8004, americanrepertorytheater.org/oberon

THE OREGON FAIL: YOU HAVE DIED OF COMEDY An evening of improv based on the once ubiquitous “Oregon Trail” video game. In this version, the audience decides how the actors measure up against the elements. Jan. 22 and 29, 11 p.m. $12. ImprovBoston, 40 Prospect St., Cambridge. 617-576-1253, www.improvboston.com

BLACKNIFICENT III: TURBO Tawanda Gona returns to host the third edition of this free-for-all of a stand-up show, featuring Chanel Ali, Nick Chambers, Shaun Bedgood, and Clark Jones. Jan. 27, 8 p.m. $5-$15. Oberon, 2 Arrow St., Cambridge. 617-496-8004, americanrepertorytheater.org/oberon

NICK A. ZAINO III

Family

The Fun and Fear of Near-Earth Asteroids Rocks can only be so interesting, but what about rocks from space? Explore just what secrets these stellar stones keep, and what they’ll contribute to the world of tomorrow. Jan. 21, 7:30-9 p.m. Free. Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden St., Cambridge. 617-495-7463, www.cfa.harvard.edu/publicevents

Winter Wildlife CruiseBoston in winter isn’t the inhospitable wasteland you might think it is. Come spy the sorts of animals that cherish the chill on this cruise around Boston Harbor and its islands. Hot refreshments will be served, but bundle up. Jan. 23, 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. $15-$20. Long Wharf North, 66 Long Wharf. 617-227-4321, bostonharborcruises.com/boston-harbor-cruises/winter-wildlife-cruise

Oshogatsu 2016 In celebration of the Japanese New Year, the Boston Children’s Museum is packed full of exciting festivities, from thunderous Taiko drumming to giant origami. Don’t let the Year of the Monkey arrive unwelcomed. Jan. 24, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. $15. Boston Children’s Museum, 308 Congress St. 617-426-6500, www.bostonchildrensmuseum.org/calendar/oshogatsu-2016-japanese-new-years-celebration

Joe Incollingo

MARK YOUR CALENDAR

Feb. 2 Pippin at Boston Opera House www.ticketmaster.com

Feb. 4Jack’s Mannequin at Royale www.ticketmaster.com

Feb. 9Monterey Jazz Festival at The Wilbur Theatre www.ticketmaster.com

Feb. 11 Baio at Brighton Music Hall www.ticketmaster.com

Feb. 12Seu Jorge at Berklee College of Music www.berklee.edu

Feb. 19 Best Coast and Wavves at Royale www.ticketmaster.com

Joe Incollingo