11 things to do in Philadelphia this weekend



Saturday, 8 p.m.

World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut St.; $10, 215-222-1400;


This North Carolina folk band may be named for a minor character in the “Lord of the Rings,” but if they indulge any fantasy it’s closer to troubadours at a Depression-era country fair than travelers in Tolkein’s Middle-earth. Their stomping, upbeat music often belies dark, lyrical content about freaks and misfits. Fans of Neutral Milk Hotel and the Decemberists will dig them.

Osvaldo Romberg: Dirty Geometry

Through May 30

Pentimenti Gallery

145 N. 2nd St.

Free, 215-625-9990


This is the first solo show in Philadelphia for Argentine artist Osvaldo Romberg, who contributes paintings, sculpture and works on paper. “Dirty” here isn’t a sexual innuendo but rather refers to Romberg’s ambition to, in his words, “invent a geometry that would be free from theory.” This involves intentional imperfections, personalizing a rarified mathematical universe.


Sunday, 3 p.m.

Penn Museum

3260 South St.

$10-$15, 215-898-4000


This is the last of new music ensemble Relache’s trio of concerts as artists-in-residence at the Penn Museum. This time they’ll be accompanying the 1912 silent film “The Mystery of the Rocks of Kador” with an original score by French composer/violinist Regis Huby. They’ll also perform two pieces by Philadelphia composer Paul A. Epstein.


Free. Think. Love. Frankenstein.

Thursday through Sunday

Adrienne Theater

2030 Sansom St.

$20, 800-838-3006


The Cabaret Administration presents what they call a “gothic romance burlesque ballet,” inspired by the revolutionary ideals and literary works of the notorious Shelleys, poet Percy and novelist Mary. Mary, daughter of the proto-feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, followed in her mother’s radical footsteps; her husband, Percy, was a fierce atheist from his teen years, and a believer in radical democracy.

Tapping Through the Decades II

Saturday, 7:30 p.m.

Kimmel Center

300 S. Broad St.

$37-$43, 215-893-1999


The local tap group Footwerx, dedicated, as they write on their website, to “bringing tapping back one sole at a time,” presents this show, another round of tap in their “hoofing” style. Featuring special guest Cody Wise, they’ll take you on a musical tour of the decades, demonstrating the relevance of tap from vaudeville to the present.


Gross Anatomy

Thursday, 6:30 p.m.

Ruba Club Studios

416 Green St.

$7-$10, 21+, 215-448-1346


Regardless of how much time you spend on the Internet, you still have a body. Don’t worry — science is working on that. But in the meantime, you might enjoy these slightly gross talks, part of the Philadelphia Science Festival, by bona fide PhDs. Gary Beauchamp’s is entitled “Urine: a Liquid Fingerprint?”; Pamela Dalton will discuss “Signals of Stress Sweat”; Katharine Prigge will enlighten you on what “Your Earwax Knows.”


You’re the Expert

Thursday, 8 p.m.

Franklin Institute

222 N. 20th St.

$15-$20, 215-448-1346


In a format similar to the classic TV panel show “What’s My Line?” and its ‘90s Nickelodeon reboot, “Figure It Out,” this show, also a podcast and now a public radio series, features three comedians — in this case, Wyatt Cenac, Zhubin Parang and Joe Firestone — attempting, with great amusement, to guess the area of expertise of a local scientist. It’s part of the Philadelphia Science Festival.


‘Noises Off’

Thursday through May 30

Curio Theatre

4740 Baltimore Ave.

$15-$25, 215-525-1350


Curio Theatre presents this 1982 farce by English playwright Michael Frayn, which takes us behind the scenes of a play called “Nothing On,” where the drama backstage is much more engaging than the drama onstage. Praised for its sheer hilarity, “Noises Off” has seen multiple revivals since its debut.

Brownsville Song (B-Side for Tray)

Friday through May 31

Suzanne Roberts Theatre

480 S. Broad St.

$52, 215-985-0420


Kimber Lee’s play looks in on the life of Tray, a Brooklyn kid who’s trying to figure himself out amidst the demands of others — he’s got all the people in his life asking for something different, but who is he to himself? And what if he has less time than he thinks to sort it out?


Framing Fraktur

Through June 14

Free Library of Philadelphia

1901 Vine St.

Free, 215-686-5322


This show is made up of two exhibits celebrating the famous Pennsylvania German style of manuscript art.“Quill and Brush” features historical examples of fraktur alongside ephemera related to the culture from which it emerged in the 1680s, while “Word and Image” shows the work of contemporary artists inspired by fraktur.


‘Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck’

Thursday, 7:30 p.m.

Roxy Theater

2035 Sansom St.

$9-$10, 267-239-2941


This is a new, authorized documentary on the life of Kurt Cobain, legendary frontman of Nirvana, still the poster boy for alternative rock 21 years after his suicide. It combines rare home movies and examples of Cobain’s notebooks and visual art with animated sequences and personal interviews to create an intimate, stylized portrait.