This week in Arts and Life: May 11 — May 17

May 11, 2015, 12:47 a.m.


This week is for sequels: Both “Pitch Perfect 2” and “Mad Max: Fury Road” will be hitting theaters Friday, with the hope of joining “Avengers: Age of Ultron” at the top of the box office. “Pitch Perfect” fans will be happy to hear that the sequel premiered last week to respectable acclaim. Many are already making comparisons between the much-anticipated follow-up and the cult-smash original. “Mad Max: Fury Road,” on the other hand, seems to be waiting to lift the embargo on reviews, so, beyond the film’s amazing trailers — and some decent word of mouth from South by Southwest, the critical verdict is still unclear. Stay tuned for reviews of both films in this Friday’s weekender.

There are also a few events taking place a bit closer to home — if you’re looking to get your film fix without the travel. This Thursday, May 14 at 8:30 p.m. the Stanford Documentary M.F.A. program will be hosting a special screening of five award-winning short films from “Herd” to “Transformers: the Premake.” The event is open to Stanford students and will take place in the Design Loft Courtyard. In addition, screenwriter Michael Karnow (“Alphas”) will be on campus this week and will be hosting a talk in the lounge of Kimball Hall on Monday, May 11 at 7 p.m. He will also be conducting a three part workshop on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings entitled “Creating a Television Series: From Concept to Treatment.”

Lastly, on VOD, the pickings are little more slim with Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton’s “Five Flights Up” the only clear standout amid recent releases. Reviews of the film have been middling though most have, at the very least, praised for Freeman and Keaton for their nuanced performances as the central pair.


Things are picking up in the Stanford theater scene as we are approaching the end of the quarter. There is definitely no shortage of theater events this weekend. This Thursday and Friday, Stanford Theater Laboratory is putting on an outdoor production of Arthur Miller’s All My Sons at 7 p.m. in Kennedy Grove. The Stanford Asian American Theater Project is presenting Diana Son’s Stop Kiss on Thursday at 8 p.m. and on Friday and Saturday at 8 and 10:30 p.m. Also this weekend, Stanford Repertory Theater is putting on a free staged reading of Bertolt Brecht’s Life of Galileo this Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. in Lanthrop 282.


It’s a busy week for music lovers here at Stanford, culminating in the long-awaited Frost Music Festival on Saturday. The annual concert will be held at Frost Amphitheater and will feature electronic musicians Flume, Kaytranada, Aluna George and Stanford based rock band, Siberian Front. The festival will also feature a set of visual art installations. If you have an SUID, hurry — there are only a few tickets left!

But before you grab your festival gear and Camelbaks, make sure to check out some of the other events going on this week. On Tuesday at 11:30 a.m., CCRMA is hosting a trio of pioneers from the punk feminist movement for a panel discussion and performance titled “PUNK FEMINISM: Girl Bands, Violence Girls, Riot Grrrls.” On Wednesday, Killer Mike (Atlanta hip-hop legend of Run the Jewels fame) will be speaking in the Race, Policing & Mass Incarceration series hosted by the African and African American Studies program at Cemex Auditorium at 7 p.m. Don’t expect a performance, but come for a thoughtful discussion with one of hip-hop’s biggest and most respected names. And be sure to close out a busy week with the Stanford Symphony Orchestra, who are playing Bing this Sunday at 2:30 p.m. — tickets are free with an SUID!

This week will also see the release of folk star The Tallest Man on Earth’s “Dark Bird is Home.” Look for music writer Tyler Dunston’s review of the singer’s fourth full-length album. In other news, Snoop Dogg (Lion?) has an album coming out titled “Bush,” with contributions from Stevie Wonder, Kendrick Lamar, Rick Ross, Charlie Wilson and Pharrell.

Visual arts

This Tuesday, “We’re Not in the Business of Warehousing Paper” opens at the Stanford Art Gallery, exhibiting works from five art practice MFA students: Einat Imber, Christopher Nickel, Felicita Norris, Daniela Rossell and Lauren Ashley Toomer. The exhibition is a melting pot, featuring ideas across different forms and media to address issues ranging from global communications to psychological boundaries.

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