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To Do: February 22–March 8, 2017

Twenty-five things to see, hear, watch, and read.


Art
1. See Joanna Malinowska’s Not a Metaphorical Forest
Humans and nature collide.
A beaver lodge made of discarded Christmas trees worms its way into your mind, while a row of tools made by the artist tunes you into this totally do-it-yourself eccentric visionary. Funny and philosophical, the works by Malinowska are a reminder that with only imagination and will can human beings change the world. —Jerry Saltz
Canada, 333 Broome St., through March 12.

TV
2. Watch The 89th Annual Academy Awards
Referendum on the red carpet.
More so than any Oscars ceremony in recent memory, this one feels like a Rorschach test of American viewers, pitting the white, middle-class visions of Manchester by the Sea and La La Land against the predominantly African-American worlds of Fences and Moonlight. Jimmy Kimmel probably isn’t the ideal host to navigate this cultural minefield, but what can you do? —Matt Zoller Seitz
ABC, February 26.

Pop
3. Listen to Dirty Projectors
With an assist from Solange.
In the past five years, Dirty Projectors has shrunk from five members to one and moved from the East Coast to California. The band’s new self-­titled album sees singer-­guitarist David Longstreth sorting through the fallout of a breakup that nearly broke his band as well. —Craig Jenkins
Domino Records, February 24.

Theater
4. See Dear World
Hello, Aurelia!
If the Bette Midler revival of Hello, Dolly! is the season’s main course of Jerry Herman, the fascinating Dear World is an ideal appetizer. Based on Giraudoux’s The Madwoman of Chaillot, this musical about a loon who saves Paris from greedy businessmen first opened on Broadway in 1969, while Dolly was in its fifth year. Tyne Daly stars. —Jesse Green
York Theatre Company at St. Peter’s, February 25 through March 5.

Classical
5. Go to Guitar Marathon
In praise of the ax.
The classical guitar is among the most intimate of instruments, but with a little judicious amplification, it turns into a two-handed chamber ensemble of enormous range. This festival showcases the guitar’s intrusions into other instruments’ terrain, with transcriptions that range from ­Mussorgsky to Prince. —Justin Davidson
92Y, February 25.

Theater
6. See Zamboni Godot and Lunchtime
Return to the planet of the Apes.
Theater of the Apes, dedicated to “original, ­affordable, comic work most commercial ­producers would find laughable,” has only one previous credit, but it’s a good one: Urinetown. Now the company is resurfacing with Ayun Halliday’s updated, all-female take on Waiting for Godot, set in modern hells like the DMV office. It plays in rep with Lunchtime, a cautionary play about salad bars by Urinetown’s bookwriter and co-lyricist, Greg Kotis. —J.G.
The Brick, March 2 through 18.

Movies
7. See Love & Taxes
Wonky with a satirical edge.
For 30 years, monologuist Josh Kornbluth has been a beloved fixture in San Francisco, where I saw the precursor to his hilarious Red Diaper Baby in 1987. (I became a friend after that—but am objective!) Now he and his brother have adapted one of Kornbluth’s monologues into a fun feature, which charts his years as a tax scofflaw and his decision to grow up and learn about the tax code. —David Edelstein
In theaters March 3.

Pop
8. Listen to VOIDS
Snapshots of restlessness and loss.
Math-rock legends Minus the Bear may have parted with founding drummer Erin Tate during the making of their sixth album, but the shake-up seems to have rejuvenated the group, which soldiered on with longtime drum tech Kiefer Matthias to craft the band’s first effort in years. —C.J.
Suicide Squeeze Records, March 3.

Movies
9. See A Cure for Wellness
Don’t drink the water.
Gore Verbinski’s return to goth-horror is so hyperstylized it’s easy to miss the critique of capitalism behind all the fever-dream imagery. And what imagery — every shot is hypnotic, from sealed sensory-­deprivation tanks to bathtubs full of eels.
In theaters now.

Storytelling
10. Go to Pop-Up Magazine
Live journalism as theater.
The folks from California Sunday Magazine’s live-event series return to New York for another night of multimedia storytelling, music, and photography onstage. Contributors will include journalists from Texas Monthly and NPR’s “All Things Considered.” Sold out; check secondary ticket outlets.
Town Hall, March 2.

Opera
11. See Idomeneo
A masterpiece, reinvigorated.
Mozart’s opera of Cretan royalty has lain dormant since 2006, but now music director emeritus James Levine leads a revival of Jean-Pierre Ponnelle’s 1982 version—the only one the company has ever staged. The cast includes some of Levine’s favorite collaborators, including ­Matthew Polenzani in the title role of the returning warrior king and Alice Coote in the cross-dressing role as his son. —J.D.
Metropolitan Opera, March 6 through March 25.

Books
12. Read Down City
A daughter seeks the truth.
Leah Carroll’s investigative memoir is a complex portrait of the crimes and addiction of her parents, as well as a story of survival. Did Carroll’s mother—murdered at the age of 30—inform on the Mafia? Was her father’s terrible end a suicide or the result of alcoholism? Carroll’s unsentimental prose is heartbreaking.
Grand Central, March 7.

Movies
13. Watch I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore
Complications, as they say, ensue.
Melanie Lynskey plays a depressed woman who teams up with her super-intense weirdo of a neighbor (Elijah Wood) to solve and perhaps even avenge the burglary of her house. Written and directed by Macon Blair, this Sundance Grand Jury Prize–winning drama expertly hits the comedy-drama sweet spot. —M.Z.S.
Netflix, February 24.

Classical
14. See Boston Symphony Orchestra
A Russian affair.
If Dmitri Shostakovich spent his whole career struggling with the rewards and dangers of being a famous Soviet composer, his student Sofia Gubaidulina bided her time, writing music of sublime but unauthorized strangeness that leaked to the West before it was recognized at home. Teacher and disciple are united in this program that includes her new concerto for violin, cello, and a Russian accordion called the bayan; also, Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 7. —J.D.
Carnegie Hall, February 28.

Movies
15. See John Wick: Chapter 2
This one’s gory.
After a truly terrible and campy opening action sequence, Chad Stahelski’s sequel to the 2014 Keanu Reeves shoot-’em-up settles down into one of the darkest bloodbaths you’ll ever see. As assassins pursue the onetime “bogeyman,” the violence is hard-core, and it’s choreographed in long takes with ­balletic—and scream-at-the-screen—precision. Common, Ian McShane, and Lance Reddick give delightful support, but Stahelski’s near-tragic tone never wavers. —D.E.
In theaters now.

Art
16. See Shara Hughes’s Lamenting, Sighing, Weeping
She should do a gigantic banner.
Organizer Dodie Kazanjian pulls off curatorial home runs in this special, secret gallery, a jewel in the crown of the Metropolitan Opera. This ravishing show of Shara Hughes’s Technicolor paintings is part fantasy, part Post-Impressionist revival, and a whole lot of reverie and love. —J.S.
Gallery Met at the Metropolitan Opera, through May 13.

Classical
17. See New York Philharmonic
Three nights of exquisite sound.
As the orchestra prepares for a new music director, outgoing conductor Alan Gilbert is spending the season making sure his legacy remains fresh in the mind, leading Leonidas Kavakos in a new violin concerto by Lera Auerbach, one of several female composers the orchestra has highlighted this season. She’s in good company: Mahler’s Fourth Symphony closes out the program. —J.D.
David Geffen Hall, March 1 through 3

Books
18. Read Autumn
Prophecy from across the pond.
How long will it take for fiction to make sense of the fever nightmare of the new administration? Until then, we have this postcard from the future, via Ali Smith’s speed-­written masterwork on the post-Brexit world (published in England in October). The story of a professionally insecure lecturer and her 101-year-old friend is impressionistic and deeply personal, but it’s also about a polarized, troll-infected society. —Boris Kachka
Pantheon.

Movies
19. Go to Jordan Peele: The Art of the Social Thriller
All your favorites together.
In preparation for the release of his new film Get Out, Key & Peele’s Jordan Peele presents this series that has no real theme but still gives you a chance to watch some great movies on BAM’s nice big screen. Who can resist another go-round with Hitchcock’s Rear Window or Demme’s The Silence of the Lambs (both on February 26) or Kubrick’s The Shining? —D.E.
BAMcinématek, through March 1.

Books
20. Read The Evening Road
A picaresque vision.
Laird Hunt sets his story in 1930 Indiana on the night of a lynching, following two women whose lives collide—one a “cornsilk” (white) traveling with people to the “rope party,” the other a “cornflower” (black) looking for her white lover. More bonkers Americana than straight historical fiction, the novel illuminates its time better than any staid sepia period piece ever could. —B.K.
Little, Brown.

TV
21. Watch The Good Fight
Nevertheless, she persisted.
The Good Wife was so much more than just the story of Alicia Florrick, as this spinoff makes clear by centering on Christine Baranski’s Diane Lockhart, caught in a moment of free fall. Just as everything in her life crumbles, she becomes the heroine we need for these troubled times, and thanks to the new platform, now she can swear, too.
CBS All Access.

Theater
22. See Willie Stark
Huey Long sings.
Along with 1984 and It Can’t Happen Here, it may be time to reread Robert Penn Warren’s All the King’s Men, about a corrupt Huey Long–like demagogue battling impeachment. Better yet, hear it sung: A Great Performances telecast of Carlisle Floyd’s opera Willie Stark, produced by Houston Grand Opera in 1981 and directed by Harold Prince, gets a rare and relevant screening this month at the Paley Center. —J.G.
The Paley Center for Media, February 25.

Pop
23. Hear Thundercat
A go-to bassist steps out.
Having collaborated with everyone from Kendrick Lamar to Suicidal Tendencies, L.A.’s most prolific bassist, Stephen “Thundercat” Bruner, is hard to pin down. Generally, his performances stick to the outré funk laid down by Parliament—imagine an even more virtuosic Bootsy, with pipes to match.
Irving Plaza, March 3.

Classical
24. Go to In C
Big-band Minimalism.
Terry Riley’s 1964 salvo In C remains one of contemporary classical’s most striking pieces, filled with conflict, joy, and a whole lot of polyrhythm. For their annual birthday concert, Darmstadt ­Essential Repertoire revisits the work with 34 ­musicians, including avant-metal drummer Greg Fox.
(Le) Poisson Rouge, February 27.

Pop
25. See Homeshake
Adventures in indie pop.
Guitarist Peter Sagar was the first mate to Mac DeMarco’s never-ending tour of NSFW antics and stoned daydream pop. Pivoting to R&B as Homeshake, Sagar sets himself apart with expert use of a drum machine and a wobbly falsetto just vulnerable enough to draw you closer.
Sunnyvale, 1031 Grand Street, Bushwick, February 22.