Best Bets • 07.29.16

Friday 07.29— Saturday 07.30

2_Denise-Lee_Photo-by-Mark-Oristano

Dallas Cabaret Festival continues with a stellar lineup

Day 1 of the inaugural Dallas Cabaret Festival has ended, but the fun is just beginning. Friday welcomes Linda Petty at 7 p.m., Julie Johnson at 8:30 p.m. and Marisa Diotalevi at 10 p.m.; Saturday is an all-star tribute to the late pianist Buddy Shanahan, hosted by Denise Lee and Gary Lynn Floyd (7:30 p.m.). And best of all? It’s all free! That really is music to our ears.

DEETS:
The Women’s Building at Fair Park
3800 Parry St.
DeniseLeeOnstage.com

Wednesday 08.03 — Sunday 08.21

R145_TaylorAlbin

The circus settles into North Texas for an extended run

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is probably the most identifiable name in the world when it comes to circuses — and there’s a reason it has long been called The Greatest Show on Earth. If you wanna feel like a kid again, this is the time, as its newest incarnation, Circus XTREME (combining thrills, exotic animals and performers) is the wildest collection of clowns since the GOP convention.

DEETS:
American Airlines Center
2500 Victory Ave.
Aug. 3–21
Fort Worth Convention Center
1201 Houston St., Fort Worth
Aug, 18–21
Ringling.com

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition July 29, 2016.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Manilow rushed to hospital, forced to cancel 2 concerts, no word yet on Dallas show

CourtesyofOrlandoSentinel

Following a performance in Memphis, Tenn., Barry Manilow was rushed to a Los Angeles-area hospital late Thursday night, Feb. 11, “due to complications from emergency oral surgery” he had on Monday, according to a post on the singer/songwriter’s Facebook page. Apparently, based on an update on Entertainment Tonight’s website, Manilow, 72, underwent a second surgery since returning to the hospital, and as of 9:43 a.m. PST, was out of surgery and doing well.

Quoting Manilow’s representative, ET reports that doctors don’t expect any further complications, but that Manilow “has been instructed not to talk, sing, or rap” for the next 48 hours.

Because of the medical emergency, Manilow was forced to postpone two other concerts in Tennessee, and may not be able to attend the Grammy Awards on Monday, Feb. 15. He is nominated for his 15th Grammy for his album, My Dream Duets, released in October 2014.

There’s been no word yet on whether the singer will have to cancel or postpone his Dallas concert, set for Tuesday night, Feb. 18, at the AAC.

Published reports have not indicated what caused Manilow to have to undergo the initial surgery.

—  Tammye Nash

Best Bets • 02.12.16

Saturday 02.13 — Sunday 02.14

comiccon

Dallas ComicCon Fan Days swoops into Las Colinas

Time to have a nerdgasm, as gay geeks! Dallas ComicCon is back, with its Fan Days celebration. This time, guests include out heartthrob Joh­­­­­­­­­­­n Barrowman (Torchwood, Arrow), Barrowman’s Arrow co-star Stephen Amell and his brother, The Flash’s Robbie Amell, Sean Pertwee and David Mazouz from Gotham, and the stars of The Dukes of Hazzard. It’s tons of fun.

DEETS:
Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas
500 W. Las Colinas Blvd., Irving
10 a.m.–7 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sunday
DallasComicCon.com

Thursday 02.18

CourtesyofOrlandoSentinel

Barry Manilow wrote the songs … and now he sings them one last time

From his early days as Bette Midler’s accompanist, playing piano in the Continental Baths, to writing some of the biggest hit songs of the 1970s to performing them as a respected crooner, he’s been a gay icon since long before he “officially” came out. Now 72, he’s touring in what will probably be his final major concert. Expect all the hits (“Mandy,” “Weekend in New England,” “Copacabana,” “I Write the Songs”) and maybe to tear up a little. Even if you’re a newcomer to his music, it’s easy to become a Fanilow.

DEETS:
American Airlines Center
2500 Victory Ave.
7:30 p.m.
Ticketmaster.com

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 12, 2016.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Adele to perform at AAC in Dallas next fall; tickets on sale Thursday

AdeleAdele, who has a little album you may have heard something about, will bring her amazing voice to Dallas’s American Airlines Center… but it’ll take almost a year. Her tour has just been confirmed at American Airlines Center on Nov. 1 and Nov. 2. Tickets go on sale this Thursday at 10 a.m. The links above will take you direct access on Thursday morning. Good luck!

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Cocktail Friday: Garth Brooks Edition

ManInTheHatGarth Brooks is one of our favorites, so we’re excited he’s in town this weekend for two concerts at the American Airlines Center. Well, we aren’t the only ones. The Texas-themed (and gay owned!) Stampede 66 by Stephan Pyles is happy to have Garth around for a few days, and so came up with this recipe for a cocktail they call The Man In The Hat. Yee-haw!

1.5 oz. High West Double Rye

.5 oz. Pimm’s

.5 oz. Cocchi Vermouth

.5 oz. Texas Honey

2 dashes Fee’s Orange Bitters

Making it: Shake ingredients together and pour over ice in a highball glass. Garnish with orange peel.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Garth Brooks is back, and that’s especially good for gay folks. Here’s why

Garth-Brooks

It’s been 17 years since Garth Brooks went on a live concert tour that took him to the Metroplex. Well, that drought ends on Sept. 18 and 19, when he will appear at American Airlines Center for two concerts.

If you’re not a country music fan, you might not fully grasp how significant this is. Brooks was a sensation in the 1990s, the biggest country star — and one of the biggest crossover musicians — in history. He was a hit-maker, releasing about a dozen albums (including studio, live and compilation) in less than 10 years. And he scored 13 — 13! — Top 10 singles in a row, including 12 Top 5. And what is significant about that 14th release? It only hit the Top 20, peaking at 12 — still a hit, but not a runaway. The song was called “We Shall Be Free,” and it shocked conservative shit-kickin’, boot-scootin’ country fans at the time. Not only did it promote liberal values (i.e., American values, like freedom of religion and speech), but it also contained the following lyric: When we’re free to love anyone we choose / when this world’s big enough for all different views

Ummm … did Garth Brooks, the biggest music star in history, just come out — in 1992! — in favor of … gay rights?!??

You’re damn right, he did.

Brooks’ sister is openly lesbian, and he may be a country-boy, but he ain’t no bigot. Brooks won over a lot of gay fans with that one … and he paid a price.

For more than a decade, he’s cooled it, rearing children with wife Tricia Yearwood. But he’s back, and he was right: As of now, we all are free to love — to marry — anyone we choose.

I’ll be there. (You can too, starting at 10 a.m. July 24. Click here.)

Below is a performance of the song recorded in Houston last month — just two days after marriage equality.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Tegan & Sara book Dallas concert stop

TS6Last year was a watershed for the lesbian twins Tegan & Sara. After years with a cult following, they released a new album, Heartthrob, with a decidedly pop bent. Suddenly, they became as hip as Justin Beiber became … not. (Hey, we can only handle so many Canadian pop stars at a time.)

The duo just began their North American Let’s Make Things Physical Tour which will run nonstop throughout most of 2014, often in conjunction with Katy Perry’s Prismatic Tour (after all, each of them has kissed a girl and liked it). One of the final stops will be opening for Perry at American Airlines Center — not a bad venue to prove you’re bona fides. The show hits Dallas Oct. 2 and 3.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

REVIEW AND PHOTOS: P!nk at American Airlines Center on Friday

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Confession: P!nk’s had some memorable early singles, but I never really followed her. And when I found out most of the songs I knew weren’t on the setlist, I worried. About two hours after her opener “Raise a Glass,” it’s fair to say I’m a new fan.

American Airlines Center was packed to the ceiling for the pop rebel last night. With a proper mix of grace, edge and dorkiness, she churned out an exciting show that throbbed with energy and lacked any agenda save for getting the party started.

There is nothing more to P!nk than pure entertainment. At least, on stage. The backdrop of several screens with a big central heart was an easily clever way to add excitement to the show that only felt to accessorize the songs rather than distract. The imagery morphed from lush, velvety reds to 16-bit Nintendo-like images (“Walk of Shame”) that made AAC feel like at times burlesque on steroids to a nostalgic video game arcade. And cameras caught the action onstage with varied video effects that added a kinetic energy to an already pulsing show. Even shades of “American Idiot” the musical felt evident during “U + Ur Hand.”

—  Rich Lopez

PHOTOS: Lady Gaga at the American Airlines Center — but not the Round-Up

As most Little Monsters probably know, Lady Gaga is not allowing media photo coverage of her Born This Way Ball, which stopped at the American Airlines Center in Dallas last night. But our Chuck Marcelo went as a spectator and managed to grab some pretty decent shots anyway. Unfortunately, for the first time in three tours, Gaga didn’t show up at the Round-Up Saloon afterward, leading to some hurt feelings since the bar had announced earlier in the day that she would be there. The Round-Up has since pulled its original post advertising Gaga’s appearance. As of this morning, the bar hadn’t posted an official apology, but this thread on its Facebook page seemed indicative of the back and forth:

 

Check out the rest of Chuck’s pics below. To read Rich Lopez’s review, go here.

—  C Marcelo

REVIEW: “Michael Jackson Immortal”

The immense cheesiness of the show is embodied in this overblown campy moment from the show, which is lip-synched.

Michael Jackson Immortal did something no other Cirque du Soleil show has ever done: Bored me.

Cirque truly is a magic-maker, having almost single-handed reinvented the concept of the circus, turning it into something unmissable rather than might-as-well. The trick of Cirque shows is that they combine the simple elegance of feats of athleticism with beauty and muscularity, while employing cutting edge technology in startling ways. Its best shows — Ka and Love, two of the permanent shows in Las Vegas — seamlessly wed plot, engineering and the human form.

Immortal does none of that. Yes, there are some pyrotechnics (the best of these, an indoor fireworks display, comes too little, too late) but the entire production feels conceived as an after-thought, some second-tier acts tacked on to boring choreography and muddled production values.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones