Arnott’s Arts Picks Of The Week April 14-20

It’s vacation week for the New Haven Public Schools, so there’s an extra burst of children’s activities, especially at the New Haven Free Public Library and Yale’s Peabody Museum. There’s a burst of activity at Yale, too, because school in still in session and lots of music and dance and theater students are doing their recitals or other thesis performance projects. Plus it’s still National Poetry Month. A major flurry of words and music this week.

Monday, April 14

IDs of History
It’s Identification Day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History (170 Whitney Ave.; 203-432-5050). It’s like an anthropological version of Antiques Road Show, where scientists help ID “artifacts, rocks, feathers, insects, shells and other objects” brought in by the public. “All specimens are welcomes, but living creatures must be safely secured in breathable containers.” Rare specimens will also be on display.

Poker Opera
The Devil Plays Poker is “a modern opera.” It’s also a band show in a club. New Haven singer-songwriter Christoph Whitbeck’s conceptual piece is about “the timeless struggle of humans,” performed “employing rock instrumentation, special effects lighting and an upbeat ensemble.” 10,000 Blades and Kari Bunn open the 9 p.m. show. Café Nine, 250 State St. (203) 789-8281. $4.

Tuesday, April 15

Rhyme Time
It’s still National Poetry Month! (What rhymes with “month”?) The New Haven Free Public Library (main Ives location, 133 Elm St.) is holding a “Poetry Party” for kids, with “silly poems that will make you laugh out loud” and group poem-writing activities. 2 p.m.

Vital Recitals
Today there are two Yale School of Music student recitals at Morse Recital Hall (inside Sprague Hall, 470 College St.; 203-432-4158): violinist Seul-A Lee at 5 p.m. and pianist Larry Weng at 8 p.m. Tomorrow there are three recitals, Friday there’s one and Saturday there are five. All free.

Wednesday, April 16

The Fantastic Roxi Fox
Betty Baisden does the first of three Roxi Fox puppet shows this week at the Peabody Museum (170 Whitney Ave.; 203-432-5050). Today at 11 a.m. is a new one, in conjunction with the museum’s current “Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs and Babies” exhibit. Tomorrow (Thursday) at both 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., Roxi poses as a “Disease Detective,” to remind families about the dangers of bloodsucking insects in the summertime. Free with museum admission.

Brown Dance
Yale Dance Theater’s spring concert highlights “The Choreography of Trisha Brown,” paying tribute to the great New York-based dancer and choreographer. 8 p.m. at Cooperative Arts and Humanities High School, 117 College St. (203) 432-1310. Tickets are free, but registration is requested.

New Music New Madrid
The Georgia-based, Tennessee-bread Southern psychedelic alt-noise quartet New Madrid will have a new album out this year on Normaltown Records. Tonight, New Madrid’s playing for free at BAR (254 Crown St.) with well-picked dark-pop local acts Farewood and Fatal Film.

Thursday, April 17

New Music New Haven
The latest New Music New Haven concert at the Yale School of Music features composer Andrew Ford, with performances of his “War and Peace” for violin and percussion and “On Winter’s Traces” for piccolo, bass clarinet, piano and string quartet. As always, the series also includes creative new works by current School of Music composition students. Free. Morse Recital Hall, inside Sprague Hall, 470 College St. (203) 432-4158.

Gladwell and Gopnik Talk It Up

New Yorker staff writers Malcolm Gladwell and Adam Gopnik hold one of their trademark “creative conversations” tonight at the Long Wharf Theatre. The colleagues, both of whom have written bestselling books, choose a topic and hold a friendly debate. The event’s a benefit for Long Wharf, whose artistic director Gordon Edelstein has been working with Gopnik and composer David Shire on a new musical called Table. 7 p.m. 222 Sargent Dr. $54.50.

Friday, April 18

Open House
The Yale Rep’s been on a world-premiere roll lately, with Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls, These Paper Bullets! and now The House That Will Not Stand, a new play by Marcus Gardley which takes the basic plot and themes of the Garcia Lorca classic The House of Bernarda Alba and shifts them to New Orleans in the 1830s. The House That Will Not Stand is a co-production with the Berkeley Rep in California, which got to show it off first, very successfully. The House That Will Not Stand begins previews at Yale Rep tonight, has its opening night next Thursday and continues through May 10. 1120 Chapel St. (203) 432-1234.

Steady Ticks
Two exceptional alt-rock bands with alt-country influences, The Hold Steady (from Brooklyn) and Deer Tick (from Providence), converge on Toad’s Place (300 York St., 203-624-TOAD) tonight. Even better, it’s open to ages 16 and up, so teens can get inspired as well as their elders. 9 p.m. $25. $22.50 in advance.

Saturday, April 19

Belly Up
The Yale Affiliates Belly Dance Society gyrates its “Hips for a Hunger,” performing a benefit concert for the Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen. Performers include CT College Belly Dance, Kelvia’s Kids & Teens Belly Dance and Yale’s Bollywood troupe. 8 p.m. Harkness Hall, Sterling Hall of Medicine, 333 Cedar St., New Haven. (651) 245-7380. $5.

Blue Magic Renewed
Let sideshow begin, step right on in. Blue Magic, the ‘70s soul/R&B act known for the hits “Sideshow” and “Three Ring Circus” has reunited. They’re at the Shubert (247 College St., 203-562-5666) tonight with former Tower of Power vocalist and solo star Lenny Williams and “Here I Go Again” chart-topper Glenn Jones for a sultry, satisfying night of old-school soul. $58-$78.

A Littly Golightly Music
Holly Golightly is an industrious British singer-songwriter who’s been actively gigging since the early ‘90s and has worked with The White Stripes, Rocket from the Crypt and Billy Childish. Her rough-hewn roots-rock tunes go down particularly well at Café Nine, where she’s appeared many times over the years. She returns there tonight with her band The Brokeoffs and a new album to promote, All Her Fault. 9 p.m. $10.

Sunday, April 20

Eoto to You
Spend Easter with Eoto. Eoto is an electronic dance music act from Colorado that breaks from most other bands in the genre by creating their sounds live rather than with loops and other effects. Eoto grew out of the multi-styled jam band The Sting Cheese Incident. This is the make-up date for Eoto’s postponed February date at Toad’s Place (300 York St., 203-624-TOAD). $20.

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