Our Weekly Picks


Dita Von Teese

With a seductive and sexy nod to the past, modern pin-up and burlesque queen Dita Von Teese has been at the forefront of reviving a nearly lost art form for two decades now. Bringing back the sense of classic style and glamour of the golden days of Hollywood and meshing it with the tantalizing teasing of the old-time burlesque circuit, Von Teese returns to the city this week with her “Burlesque: Strip, Strip, Hooray!” show, a live revue featuring not only her own titillating talents, but a host of other performers as well, including Dirty Martini, Catherine D’Lish, and Lada Nikolska from the legendary “Crazy Horse Paris.”

(Sean McCourt)

Through Fri/28, 7:30pm, $40


1805 Geary, SF

(415) 346-6000


“Harvey Milk 2013”

The San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, the world’s first chorus comprised of openly gay men, had its first unofficial public performance at a candlelight vigil for Harvey Milk. The group has since become known for its dazzling holiday concerts, but its historical origins mean it’s fitting that — as part of its 35th anniversary celebration — SFGMC is presenting the world premiere of I Am Harvey Milk. Starring its composer Andrew Lippa as Milk, with guest soprano Laura Benanti, this blend of theater and choral works traces the courageous life of the slain politician, with accompaniment by the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony. (Cheryl Eddy)

Wed/26-Fri/28, 8pm, $25-60

Nourse Theatre

201-299 Hayes, SF




Clay Shirky

“I’m trying to figure out what difference communications technologies makes to society,” Clay Shirky remarked in a 2011 interview. “What is it about the Internet, what is it about mobile phones, applications built on top of them, that changes how we behave.” The New York University professor has become one of the world’s foremost authorities on gauging how technology has shifted social action. His 2010 book Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age outlined how web tools have provided new opportunities for creation in place of consumption, pointing out dynamics such as self-publication and charitable crowdfunding. Shirky has championed government transparency in recent editorials exploring the high-profile leaks of US surveillance programs. (Kevin Lee)

6:30 p.m., $20 (member, $12; students $7)

Commonwealth Club

595 Market, SF

(415) 597-6700




Tommy Davidson

Comedian Tommy Davidson might be offensive, but his keen observations about the absurdity of our daily lives and his animated delivery guarantee laughs. His ability to comment on situations that arise in all walks of life ensures everyone has something to chuckle about through his bits. Known for his roles in the ’90s hit sketch show In Living Color, films like Strictly Business (and OK, Juwanna Mann) and most recently in the spotlight for his character Cream Corn on Adult Swim’s cartoon Black Dynamite, Davidson tours pretty infrequently, so catch him while you can — likely offering fresh takes on old habits. (Hillary Smith)

8pm and 10pm, $24-26


1330 Fillmore, SF

(415) 655-5600




Y La Bamba

Indie-folk rocker group Y La Bamba has been steadily building a fan base over the past couple of years, earning high praise from NPR and loaning songs to television programs such as Bones. The Portland-based band’s hauntingly rich and ethereal sound is propelled by singer-songwriter Luzelena Mendoza, whose vocals float and weave tales above Latin-inspired rhythms and unique backing vocals. Its latest full-length album, last year’s Court The Stormwas produced by Los Lobos member Steve Berlin, and an excellent EP, Oh February was released this January. (McCourt)

9pm, $12–$15


777 Valencia, SF

(415) 551-5157




Japanther lets everything go in its performances. Punk is its staple, and the group is known for fuzzy overtones and generally sloppy delivery. All this culminates into weird, disorienting live shows. But whether the band drops five Ramones covers on you or blasts into its own songs (likely off newest album, Eat Like Lisa Act Like Bart) with a raw, unpredictable energy, it will be fun. Keep an eye out for the duo’s signature telephone microphones and the more-often-than-not shirtless bat-shit drummer. (Smith)

With Defiance, Ohio, Psilovision

9pm, $12

Bottom of the Hill

1233 17th St., SF

(415) 626-4455




San Francisco FrontRunners Pride Run

For folks who love to sweat, there’s no better way to celebrate Pride than with veteran LGBT running club the San Francisco FrontRunners, who’ve hosted this event for over three decades. Choose the 5K or the 10K by asking yourself “How many times do I want to haul ass up that hilly stretch of Golden Gate Park’s JFK Drive?” — but remember, the emphasis here is mos def on fun. Sure, some speed demons do turn out (last year’s 5K winner clocked in at just over 18 minutes), but casual joggers are also in effect, as are Pink Saturday-themed athletic ensembles. Upbeat DJs and tasty food at the finish line add to the festive atmosphere. (Eddy)

9am, $40

Golden Gate Park (near Metson and Middle Dr. West), SF



In A Daughter’s Eyes

Two women, two very different circumstances: the first, the daughter of a Black Panther sentenced to death for killing an Oakland cop; the second, the daughter of the slain man. Locked in a room together, how will the women negotiate their differences — and is there any chance of forgiveness and healing? Brava! For Women in the Arts and Black Artists Contemporary Cultural Experience present award-winning playwright A. Zell Williams’s In A Daughter’s Eyes in its West Coast debut; though it features just one location and only two characters, expect a powerful, intense story, guided by the sure hand of veteran director Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe. (Eddy)

Through July 14

Previews Thu/27-Fri/28, 8pm; opens Sat/29, 8pm; runs Thu-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 3pm, $15

Brava Theater Center

2781 24th St, SF



The Juan MacLean (DJ Set)

After years of producing quality electro-disco-club music for DFA Records (home to legendary sometimes-retired LCD Soundsystem), DJ and producer the Juan MacLean (stage name for John Maclean) has leapt head first into a stripped-down, nu-house sound. With vocalist and longtime collaborator Nancy Whang, MacLean released the cool, classy “You Are My Destiny” this March, completing a shift that may have taken root as far back as 2011 with his Peach Melba side project. Transitions are standard practice for the former hardcore guitarist turned electronic music artist, who has collaborated with LCD Soundsystem, !!!, and Holy Ghost! and remixed Yoko Ono and Stevie Nicks. In the midst of a relentless international tour schedule, MacLean signaled his return to dance music prominence earlier this month with a set on BBC Radio 1’s prestigious Essential Mix program. (Lee)

With Kim Ann Foxman, Blacksheep

9pm, $10–$20


101 Sixth St., SF

(415) 284-9774




Deltron 3030

If you’ve lived in SF for at least a year, then you probably know about Stern Grove’s awesomely free and diverse ongoing music festival. But if not, this summer-long (June 16-Aug.18) series offers the community a chance to get outside and enjoy nature while picnicking with live musical accompaniment. The beautiful, towering eucalyptus trees, redwoods, and grassy meadows provide the best possible settings for a summer music festival. This Sunday’s lineup features dance hip-hip super group Deltron 3030. Rapping about evil corporate Goliaths and space battles, often alongside an orchestral band, Deltron 3030’s performance is anything but typical. The festival itself is always worth checking out, but the group makes this Sunday’s show one of the highlights of summer. (Smith)

2pm, free

Stern Grove

19th Avenue and Sloat, SF



“Science On Screen: The Science of Baseball”

Hey, batter! There are very few Bay Area residents who don’t have an opinion on which baseball team to root for (default consensus: “L.A. sucks”), but there’s more to the game than trash talk and World Series trophies. Indeed, there’s some pretty serious science behind all those curve balls and home runs, and who better to break it down than the Exploratorium’s David Barker and Linda Shore? (Check out the museum’s clever and educational “Science of Baseball” site at exploratorium.edu/baseball.) Using clips from documentaries and Hollywood films, the duo gets into the nitty-gritty of baseball’s complex biomechanics — so the next time you watch Hunter Pence step up to the plate, you’ll be able to spot the physics behind his hitting prowess. (Eddy)

7pm, $12

Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center

1118 Fourth St, San Rafael




Pure Bathing Culture

Listen to Portland, Oreg.-via-Brooklyn duo Pure Bathing Culture’s ethereal, synth-laced cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams,” and you’ll likely tumble into a web search hole, digging out other soundscape-y Fleetwood Mac covers to quench your newfound obsession (likely finding that PBC’s is still tops). Crawl out of the hole and face your new favorite, Pure Bathing Culture, head on by grabbing a hold of 2012’s self-titled EP, an ode to dreamy 1980s pop produced by Richard Swift. Then note influences like Talk Talk and Cocteau Twins expanding on recently released tracks off upcoming debut full-length, Moon Tides. Band members guitarist Daniel Hindman and keyboardist Sarah Versprille have contributed in the past to records by Foxygen and Damien Jurado, but together as Pure Bathing Culture, they form a loosely wound union of shimmering guitars, twinkling synths, and delicate vocals, twisting along a well-worn path. (Emily Savage)

With Cocktails, Cannons and Clouds, CoolGreg

9pm, free

Brick and Mortar Music Hall

1710 Mission, SF

(415) 800-8782



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