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The Ticket: What’s happening in the local arts world

Nick Lowe plays the Wilbur Theatre April 11.
Nick Lowe plays the Wilbur Theatre April 11.GARI GARAIALDE/AFP/Getty Images/file/AFP/Getty Images


Pop & Rock

MUSE It was probably inevitable that these blustery British proggers would dip into the ’80s revivalism that dominates their latest album, “Simulation Theory”; even now, that decade’s sonic excesses far outstrip any other from the rock era, while its dystopian visions — “Max Headroom,” “Blade Runner,” that ironically sorta-prophetic Apple ad — line up with the band’s lyrical fixations. April 10, 7:30 p.m. $44 and up. TD Garden. 617-624-1000, www.tdgarden.com

NATALIE PRASS “The Future and the Past,” the second album from this Virginia troubadour, is gorgeous and vibrant, pairing prickly lyrics about modern woes with sumptuous, meticulously arranged pop-soul. April 11, 8 p.m. $15 and up. The Sinclair, Cambridge. 617-547-5200, www.sinclaircambridge.com


NICKY JAM The Boston-born, Puerto Rico-raised superstar is one of Latin music’s hottest act, as evidenced by his starring roles in YouTube’s top two music videos of 2018: the posse-cut remix of the Latin dancehall track “Te Bote” and “X,” his collab with fellow reggaetón king J Balvin. April 13, 8 p.m. $51 and up. Agganis Arena. 800-745-3000, www.livenation.com


Folk & World

NICK LOWE With the relaxed, late-night country soul music he’s been making for the past two decades, has anyone made a more effortless and elegant second-act transformation than Nick Lowe? As is his wont lately, he’s touring with Los Straitjackets as his backing band. Don’t miss Dawn Landes, who opens. April 11, 8 p.m. $35-$45. Wilbur Theatre. 800-745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com

RODNEY CROWELL/BRANDY CLARK/NORTH MISSISSIPPI ALLSTARS The latest in the Boch Center’s Folk, Americana & Roots Music Series brings together an elder statesman of the Americana genre, a rising country singer-songwriter, and a purveyor of high-test country-blues. Each of them will play a set before uniting for a closing collaboration. April 9, 7:30 p.m. $30-$60. Shubert Theatre. 866-348-9738, www.bochcenter.org


THE CACTUS BLOSSOMS Minnesota brothers Jack Torrey and Page Burkum, who make music as the Cactus Blossoms, have widened the scope of their vintage sound a bit on their new album, “Easy Way” — a bit of pedal steel here, a touch of Rickenbacker there. But their marvelous, throwback harmonies remain at the heart of what they do. April 12, 9 p.m. $15. The Sinclair, Cambridge. 888-929-7849, www.axs.com


Jazz & Blues

PUENTE MUSICAL: CELEBRATING CHUCHO VALDÉS Founder, pianist, and composer/arranger for the legendary Cuban ensemble Irakere (1973-2005), multi-Grammy winner Valdés is among the most influential figures in contemporary Afro-Cuban jazz. His 2019 Harvard University Jazz Master residency culminates in a concert featuring the Harvard Jazz Bands and bassist Yunior Terry. April 12, 8 p.m. $10-$19. Sanders Theatre, 45 Quincy St., Cambridge 617-496-2222, www.boxoffice.harvard.edu

TONI LYNN WASHINGTON BAND A native of Southern Pines, N.C., Washington grew up steeped in gospel and R&B before moving north to become known as “Boston’s Queen of the Blues.” Now in her 80s, she continues to reign, as inspirational as ever. April 13, 9 p.m. No cover. Chianti Restaurant, 285 Cabot St., Beverly. 978-921-2233, www.chiantibeverly.com

JASON PALMER QUINTET The Celebrity Series presents the dynamic band of acclaimed trumpeter, composer, and educator Palmer, who is surely among the most in-demand players and leaders to have emerged from Boston in recent years. Proceeds benefit the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative. April 14, 3 p.m. $5. Hibernian Hall, 184 Dudley St., Roxbury. 617-482-2595, www.celebrityseries.org




ASHMONT HILL CHAMBER MUSIC Local contemporary chamber trailblazer HUB New Music delivers the world premiere of “Rogue Emoji,” a new work by Kati Agócs. The program also includes music by Pascal Le Boeuf, Yevgeniy Sharlat, and Mason Bates. April 7, 4 p.m. Peabody Hall, All Saints Church, Dorchester. 617-827-7857, www.ahchambermusic.org

CASTLE OF OUR SKINS A free concert of string quartets by African-American composers: Jessie Montgomery, Adolphus Hailstork (whose “An American Port of Call” was played by the Boston Symphony Orchestra on March 23), and George Walker. Registration required. April 11, 7 p.m. Community Music Center of Boston. 617-482-7494, www.cmcb.org

BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Los Angeles Philharmonic music director Gustavo Dudamel concludes his two-week stint at Symphony Hall with a program of symphonic music by South American composers Paul Desenne, Alberto Ginastera, and Antonio Estévez. Casual Friday program on April 12 omits the Desenne. April 11-13. Symphony Hall. 888-266-1200, www.bso.org

A FAR CRY Boston’s conductorless string orchestra takes a spacewalk, falls to earth, and goes blasting off again in “Gravity,” a heady program including works by Pärt, Golijov, and Xenakis. April 12, 8 p.m. Jordan Hall. Repeats April 13 at Merrimack College, North Andover. 617-553-4887, www.afarcry.org

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DRAGON LADY and DRAGON MAMA The incandescent Sara Porkalob traverses a remarkably wide performative range to populate her tales about her Filipino grandmother (in “Dragon Lady’’) and mother (in “Dragon Mama’’) with dozens of other characters, each of whom Porkalob brings vividly to life with quick-sketch specificity. She’s got a knack for verbal and physical comedy, major dramatic acting chops, and a singing voice that is Broadway-caliber. In short, she’s a force and a phenomenon. Directed by Andrew Russell. Through April 7. American Repertory Theater. At Oberon, Cambridge. 617-547-8300, www.americanrepertorytheater.org


AMERICAN MOOR A deep-from-the-heart spellbinder, created and performed by Keith Hamilton Cobb, that delivers a blisteringly eloquent and penetrating meditation on the ever-urgent matter of race in America. The prism through which Cobb tells his deeply personal yet far-reaching story is an audition for “Othello’’ at which a 50-something black actor is vying for the title role before a young white director intent on instructing him on how to play Othello. What Cobb does so brilliantly in “American Moor’’ is to connect the experience of not being truly seen as an actor with the larger frustration, anguish, and fury of African-Americans at being unseen, or not accurately seen (which amounts to the same thing, as Ralph Ellison taught us long ago with “Invisible Man’’). April 10-21. ArtsEmerson. At Robert J. Orchard Stage, Emerson Paramount Center. 617-824-8400, www.artsemerson.org

SPAMILTON: AN AMERICAN PARODY “Forbidden Broadway’’ impresario Gerard Alessandrini, who has mercilessly skewered countless musical-theater eminentos over the years, clearly sees “Hamilton’’ creator Lin-Manuel Miranda as a kindred spirit in the quest to make Broadway better. But that didn’t stop Alessandrini from creating (and directing) an entertaining sendup of Miranda (played by Adrian Lopez) and his blockbuster musical. The virtuosic Ani Djirdjirian is a cast standout, portraying a gallery of characters who include Julie Andrews, Liza Minnelli, Renee Elise Goldsberry, Barbra Streisand, and the Beggar Woman from “Sweeney Todd.’’ Through April 7. Huntington Theatre Company. At Wimberly Theatre, Calderwood Pavilion, Boston Center for the Arts. 617-266-0800, www.huntingtontheatre.org




WHAT REMAINS Boston-born choreographer Will Rawls teams up with MacArthur Fellow poet Claudia Rankine and filmmaker John Lucas in an exploration of the hidden histories and disappearances of African-American citizens. Inspired by Rankine’s reflections on racial violence, the work weaves together movement, text, and projections. April 12-13. $15-$25. Institute of Contemporary Art. 617-478-3103, www.icaboston.org

BALLET HISPÁNICO The acclaimed New York-based company has been nurturing and exploring Latino dance for nearly five decades, fusing traditional forms with ballet and contemporary idioms. This upcoming concert highlights choreography from Spain, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, the Caribbean, and beyond. April 12. $27-$47. Zeiterion Performing Arts Center, New Bedford. 508-994-2900, www.zeiterion.org

LIMITLESS Boston Conservatory at Berklee’s annual Spring concert really packs it in this time. It includes world premieres by Itzik Galili, hip-hop artist Jennifer Archibald, and Otis Sallid, as well as Kurt Douglas’s restaging of José Limón’s classic masterpiece “A Choreographic Offering,” plus contemporary dance interpretations of reimagined Metallica songs arranged and recorded by four Berklee ensembles. Whew! April 11-14. $25-$30. Boston Conservatory Theater. 617-912-9222, www.bostonconservatory.berklee.edu



WILLIE COLE: BEAUTIES When he was young, Cole mended steam irons for his grandmother and great-grandmother, who worked as housekeepers. Irons became a motif in his art, a symbol of domestic labor and African-American history. Here, he crafts prints directly from ironing boards and titles them with women’s names. Through June 29. Johnson-Kulukundis Family Gallery, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University, 8 Garden St., Cambridge. 617-496-1153, www.radcliffe.harvard.edu/event/2019-willie-cole-beauties-exhibition

ASHWINI BHAT: ORIGIN OF SPECIES The ceramic artist makes work rooted in her training in traditional Indian dance and her broad knowledge of clays and firing processes. Her abstract forms lean toward figuration and the anthropomorphic as she considers humans’ association to other creatures, and questions our self-aggrandizing placement at the top of the evolutionary ladder. Through April 27. Lacoste Keane Gallery, 25 Main St., Concord. 978-369-0278, www.lacostekeane.com

JULIE S GRAHAM: UNEXPECTED PLACES Graham, who died last year, was a vibrant presence in the Boston art scene. Wrestling with sense of place, time’s passage, and transformation, her paintings and sculptures find grace in discards, miracles in hidden and abandoned things, and harmony in unanticipated juxtapositions. Through April 28. Kingston Gallery, 450 Harrison Ave. 617-462-9353, www.kingstongallery.com



MONET: VISION AND PROCESS Claude Monet painted London’s Waterloo Bridge some 80 times, eventually settling on 41 that passed his personal muster as finished works. Nine of those are on view at the Worcester Art Museum, where the Impressionist master’s near-obsessive pursuit of the city’s changeable conditions — fog, smog, sun, rain — made the scene inexhaustible for a painter in pursuit less of a picture than of an understanding of the ineffable quality of change. Through April 28. Worcester Art Museum, 55 Salisbury St., Worcester. 508-799-4406, www.worcesterart.org

RELATIONAL UNDERCURRENTS Less a group show than a gathering of works vaguely related by accident of geography — some of them great — this exhibition of contemporary Caribbean art is as scattershot as you might imagine. It samples the cultural output of more than a dozen distinct countries and clusters them all under the same rubric. It does make its point, whether intentionally or not: that the first-world notion of only mildly varying sameness among the archipelago is as muddled as the show itself. Through May 5. Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Square, Portland, Maine. 207-775-6148, www.portlandmuseum.org

KAPWANI KIWANGA: SAFE PASSAGE For this show, the Paris-based Kiwanga researched Boston’s “lantern laws,” an 18th-century regulation that required slaves to carry lit candles if they were to be outdoors after dark. It was a primitive form of surveillance. Kiwanga’s show considers the difference between being visible and being watched — a distinction of which African-Americans have been painfully aware for centuries. Through April 21. MIT List Visual Arts Center, 20 Ames St., Cambridge. 617-253-4380, listart.mit.edu




A NIGHT FOR JIM Boston comics Tony V., Frank Santorelli, Jimmy Tingle, Mike McDonald, Laura Severse, and Emily Ruskowski share the bill for this benefit for the Jimmy Fund in honor of comedian Jim DeCroteau, who passed away in August. Dan Margarita hosts, with a special performance by musician Karen Silver. April 7, 6 p.m. $20. The Comedy Studio, 1 Bow Market Way #23, Somerville. 617-661-6507, www.thecomedystudio.com

CHELSEA HANDLER The comedian, television host, and author comes to town with her new tour, officially titled “Life Will Be the Death of Me: Chelsea Handler’s Sit-Down Comedy Tour,” discussing her new book of the same name. April 11, 8 p.m. $65-$85. Orpheum Theatre. 800-745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com

DULCE SLOAN In her “Conan” set, the “Daily Show” correspondent mentioned an encounter at a grocery store in which the cashier told her, “You know, I’d really like to take you out . . . I mean, after you lose like 20, 30 pounds.” To which she replied, “Oh, I’m sorry, I couldn’t hear you over the minimum wage.” April 12-13, 7:30 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. $25. Laugh Boston, 425 Summer St. 617-725-2844, www.laughboston.com



YOUTH DRAG PAGEANT Join BAGLY, the Boston Alliance of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth, for its youth drag pageant. This year’s winners will help lead the youth pride march. April 10, 7 p.m.-9 p.m. 28 Court Square.  www.facebook.com  

JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH Enjoy Roald Dahl’s classic brought to life on stage. The musical adaptation features music and lyrics from Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, who worked on “Dear Evan Hansen.” April 12-May 12. $20-$40. Wheelock Family Theatre, 180 Riverway. www.wheelockfamilytheatre.org

SUITE SURPRISE This family concert features conductor Marta Zurad and magician Matt Roberts. There’s also a preconcert activity hour beginning at 10:30 a.m. with an “instrument playground.” April 13, noon-1 p.m. $20 per adult; free for children 18 and under. Symphony Hall, 301 Massachusetts Ave.  www.bso.org



April 18 Chicago at Orpheum Theatre ticketmaster.com

April 19 Foals at House of Blues Boston livenation.com

April 21 Laura Jane Grace & the Devouring Mothers at the Sinclair axs.com

April 25 Bruce Hornsby at Wilbur Theatre ticketmaster.com

April 26 Patti Smith at Orpheum Theatre ticketmaster.com

May 4 Marianas Trench at House of Blues Boston songkick.com

May 9 Lil Pump at House of Blues Boston livenation.com

May 18 Aly & AJ at Paradise Rock Club songkick.com