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Last Of The Nice Days,
Big Names In Metro Phoenix Arts

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The Unlimited Arts Calendar is published biweekly and provides selected events for the proceeding two weeks. Send calendar submissions for consideration to:
Unlimited Arts April 12 to 26: Popular Swing Band Big Bad Voodoo Daddy Is Coming To Town As Is The Musical Son Of A Beatle And Some Comedians You May Have Heard Of: Marlon Wayans And John Witherspoon


By Staff Report
Modern Times Magazine

April 13, 2017 — Sheeesh, it’s is really nice outside in the Phoenix metro right now.

Sure, in a few months, everyone will be hunkering down in their cooled boxes, but right now, it is something close to paradise. And, our secret is out. Entertainers galore and local acts love coming to the Phoenix metro in March and April.

How about these names: Willie Nelson, Marlon Wayans, John Witherspoon, James McCartney and Juan de Marcos González. Don’t worry if you don’t know Juan de Marcos González — he’s famous, but mostly in jazz circles with his band, the Afro-Cuban All Stars.

And, maybe you were fooled by James McCartney because his name just sounds famous: he’s Paul (Beatle) McCartney’s son.

Oh well, there’s that and there’s much more in this week’s Unlimited Arts Calendar.

And get your fill before the hot months come and you get rewarded with more local fare.

Thursday, April 13 to Sunday, April 16

Children love Disney characters, from Mickey Mouse to the sisters of Frozen, but it seems a whole lot of adults do as well. Those beloved characters will come to life in Disney On Ice: Dream Big, being held through Thursday, April 13 through 16 at Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix. Showtimes vary; for more information or ticket prices, go to

Friday, April 14

A swing band that first became popular in the mid 1990s, Big Bad VooDoo Daddy is coming to Phoenix, with a three performances in Symphony Hall, 75 N 2nd St., Phoenix today and Saturday. Tickets start at $33; find out more by checking out

Saturday, April 15

The All-Star Comedy Explosion -- featuring Marlon Wayans, Deray Davis, John Witherspoon, Rickey Smiley and Michael Blackson -- will be held at 8 p.m. at the Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. Tickets start at $50; get more details by going to

Phoenix’s own Soul Power Band will play live at 9 p.m at the Rhythm Room, 1019 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix. The group specializes in the Motown Sound, funk and blues. Tickets are $8; get more info at

Tuesday, April 18

Tony award-winning musicalAn American In Paris will be performed live through April 23 at the ASU Gammage, 1200 S Forest Ave., Tempe. The acclaimed production is inspired by the classic 1951 Gene Kelly film. To buy tickets or learn more, check out

Wednesday, April 19

In support of their I See You tour, pop band The xx will be on stage at the Mesa Amphitheatre, 263 N. Center St. Sampha is the opening act for this all-ages show. Tickets are $40; to learn more, go to

Thursday, April 20

This year’s Phoenix Improv Festival is being held through April 22 at Herberger Theater Center, 222 E. Monroe St., Phoenix. Along with the United States, artists from a diverse line-up of countries -- including the Netherlands, Finland and Turkey -- will perform. Tickets are $10 and $20;

The self-described “sharp-tongued queens” from RuPaul’s Drag Race will be on stage as part of of the HATERS ROAST - The Shady Tour at 8 p.m. at Herberger Theater Center, 222 E. Monroe St., Phoenix. (While the show is open to all ages, the material can be rather racy.) Tickets range from $38 to $153. Learn more at

Considered the greatest science fiction film of all time -- and marking a 35th anniversary this year -- Blade Runner will be screened at 7 p.m. at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, 7374 E. Second St. Brad Allenby, professor of engineering at Arizona State University; Alicia Chavira, manager at Fashion by Robert Black; and Sara Cochran, SMoCA director and chief curator will provide real-time commentary on the film’s cultural impact. Admission is $4 or $7; learn more at

Friday, April 21

Phoenix rockers Sunday At Noon will take the stage at Pub Rock, 8005 E. Roosevelt St., Scottsdale. The band has released an EP. Opening acts are Analog Outlaws, Silver & Gold, and Daisy. The show starts at 7 p.m. For more information, go to

Saturday, April 22

Eclectic rockers The Mavericks will perform today and April 23 at Talking Stick Resort, 9800 Talking Stick Way, Scottsdale. To buy tickets or learn more, go to

Sunday, April 23

Afro-Cuban All Stars, one of the best-known Cuban music groups today, will perform at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. in the Musical Instrument Museum Theater, 4725 E. Mayo Blvd., Phoenix. Tickets start at $38.50; to purchase one, call (480) 478-6000 or go to

He’s “on the road again.” Willie Nelson and Family will play Celebrity Theatre, 440 N. 32nd St., Phoenix. Tickets start at $71; to purchase one or learn more, go to

Friday, April 28

The musical Oliver! will be performed through May 21 at Arizona Broadway Theatre, 7701 W. Paradise Lane, Peoria. For showtimes and ticket prices, call (623) 776-8400 or go to

Using percussion in super-creative ways, STOMP will be staged through April 29 at the Orpheum Theatre, 203 W. Adams, Phoenix. Showtimes and ticket prices vary; get more details at

Sunday, April 30

When your father was part of the greatest rock band of all time, becoming a musician seems a no-brainer: James McCartney (son of Paul) will perform at Valley Bar, 130 N. Central Ave., Phoenix. McCartney is touring in support of his new album The Blackberry Train. Opening acts are Anna Rose and Tobie Milford. Tickets start at $15; get more details at

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