Essentials: Entertainment Picks Dec. 4-10 | Entertainment Picks | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly
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Culture » Entertainment Picks

Essentials: Entertainment Picks Dec. 4-10





No Fixed Address: The Face of America's Homeless
It's widely understood that what we don't know, or don't understand, is what we fear the most. Those with No Fixed Address—the name of the current exhibition at The Leonardo—"enjoy the same books in the library and the same radio stations. We sit next to each other on the bus or the train," says The Leonardo's statement. "Until now, we may have been strangers, or maybe we've exchanged glances and a conversation or two." No Fixed Address sheds light on the myths and the realities of homelessness and invites you to look at the faces of the individuals and families who live on the streets or in shelters. "It reminds us of our shared humanity," reads one gallery plaque. In one of many untitled photographic images, a mother carrying her son points to the camera for the boy to see, while her daughter holds on to her coat. A lovely African-American woman kisses her radiant daughter on the cheek (pictured); this is the picture of happiness. A Native American with handsome rugged features wears a cowboy hat and stands with a proud look. A smiling man bears the look of an intellectual—goatee, round glasses, dressed in a blazer, vest, and shirt buttoned to his neck—and might easily be mistaken for a professor at the University of Utah. Through such images of the many faces of homeless Americans and through knowledge and understanding of commonalities, rather than differences, the community might develop greater empathy. (Ehren Clark) No Fixed Address: The Face of America's Homeless @ The Leonardo, 209 E. 500 South, 801-531-9800, through May 15, $7-$9.



Christo and Jeanne-Claude: The Tom Golden Collection
Some 56-odd years ago, Christo and his wife, Jeanne-Claude, met, and in the decades following, they became renowned in the art world and the general public for "wrapping" buildings and other public edifices, as well as for their installation works. They wrapped the Reichstag in Berlin, Paris' Pont-Neuf bridge and the 24-mile "Running Fence" in California. Kimball Art Center is exhibiting works from the largest collection of the pair's original collages, drawings, photographs and sculptures. Although the finished results of their projects always received the most attention due to their grand scale, the bulk of their work over time was spent planning and preparing for the works, including the bureaucratic hurdles they have had to overcome to get the needed permits. This planning is evident in this collection, as well as the documentary film The Gates: Central Park, New York City, 1979-2005, which chronicles their 25-year struggle to get approval from the city for "The Gates" installation. Jeanne-Claude passed away in 2009. The Kimball Art Center's presentation of Christo and Jeanne-Claude's work is an important opportunity to view representations of their ideas in various media, as they have had an immense impact not only on the artistic landscape, but also on culture and the physical landscape, making a statement about nature and our impositions into it, and the urban world. These representations illustrate the myriad ways their installations existed first as works of their extravagant imaginations. (Brian Staker) Christo and Jeanne-Claude: The Tom Golden Collection @ Kimball Art Center, 638 Park Ave., Park City, 435-649-8882, through Jan. 4, free.



Wiseguys Downtown Grand Opening: Joe Machi
Downtown Salt Lake City has been awaiting the return of a regular live comedy venue since the Wiseguys Trolley Square location closed earlier this year. And now Wiseguys is back, in the bright, shiny new Broadway Media building on 300 South downtown. The new Wiseguys venue launches this weekend with headliner Joe Machi. The Pennsylvania native has only been performing comedy for eight years, but has already accumulated honors including winning the New York Underground Comedy Festival's Emerging Comic competition, the "Elite 8" in Caroline's March Madness Comedy Competition, the Boston Comedy Festival, and appearing on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. Help celebrate the venue's opening, and keep an eye on the 2015 calendar for such notable headliners as Pauly Shore, Brian Posehn and Demetri Martin. (Scott Renshaw) Joe Machi @ Wiseguys Downtown SLC, 50 W. 300 South, 801-532-5233, Dec. 4 @ 7:30 p.m., Dec. 5-6 @ 7:30 & 9:30 p.m., $15.



Ballet West: The Nutcracker
No holiday season would be complete without experiencing the magic of Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker. Performing-arts companies around the world have choreographed and staged many versions of the timeless classic, but Ballet West's annual production features the beloved choreography and staging of William Christensen, the first American to create a full-length ballet production of The Nutcracker. Christensen's ballet is in two acts and based loosely on the beloved fairy tale by E.T.A. Hoffmann, including all the signature plot points of a grand holiday party, a mysterious uncle named Herr Drosselmeyer, snow castles and adorable sugarplum fairies. Ballet West has been staging the work to the delight of audiences for more than 55 years. For many, it is a cherished chance to engage in the time-honored tradition of witnessing a giant nutcracker turn into a handsome prince in the enchanted dreams of an imaginative girl named Clara. One of the major features of Christensen's rendition is the inclusion of a live children's choir and a cast featuring more than 120 young dancers from Ballet West's academy ranks. The fact that the total number of people involved in the staging of this tradition grows annually, along with the number of attendees clamoring to get tickets to one of the several dozen performances, is proof that the seasonal tradition is alive and well. This year, Ballet West is even taking the production east, to share the magic of The Nutcracker with audiences at The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. (Jacob Stringer) Ballet West: The Nutcracker @ Capitol Theatre, 50 W. 200 South, 801-355-2787, Dec. 5-31, 7 p.m., Saturday matinees 2 p.m., Christmas Eve matinee 12 p.m., $29-$84.,



Utah Symphony: Beethoven's Ninth
There are few more recognizable pieces of music than the "Ode to Joy" that closes out Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Beethoven set the words of a poem by Friedrich Schiller expressing the brotherhood of all mankind to music to finish the final movement of his final symphony, creating a melody still known worldwide nearly 200 years later. The "Ode" is now the anthem of the European Union, is used as the music for many Olympic opening and closing ceremonies, and has been used by protesters from Chile to China in struggles for human rights. Its penetration into popular culture is so deep that it was used as the entry song for Triple H of the World Wrestling Federation. Since it can be used royalty-free, it gets tossed into a multitude of TV shows and movies to convey achievement, wonder and celebration. The premiere of the Ninth in Vienna in 1824 marked a comeback for the composer, who took the stage for the first time in 12 years to conduct an orchestra he couldn't hear since he had become deaf. Accounts vary as to how successful he was, although all seem to agree someone had to let him know the audience was giving him a standing ovation at the end. This weekend marks the first of three concerts making up a Utah Symphony Beethoven Series, with special ticket packages available for all three performances. The other two performances will feature violinist Baiba Skride (Feb. 20-21), and pianist Andre Watts (March 6-7). (Geoff Griffin) >Utah Symphony: Beethoven's Ninth @ Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, 801-355-2787, Dec. 5-6, 8 p.m., $23-$63.