THE ESSENTIAL A&E PICKS FOR JUN 2 - 8 | Entertainment Picks | Salt Lake City Weekly

THE ESSENTIAL A&E PICKS FOR JUN 2 - 8 

Hannah Gadsby, "Weird Al" Yankovic / Emo Phillips, Interdisciplinary Arts Collective: a wall for the body, a circle for the soul, a fruit for your memory, and more.

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BEN KING
  • Ben King

Hannah Gadsby
Hannah Gadsby has been referred to as a "world class, award-winning funny person," and given the fact that she's an acclaimed comedienne who deals with subjects that are often dark and disturbing, yet still real and relevant, that label seems to stick. Her monologues can touch on homophobia, xenophobia, sexism and sexual assault, and while those subjects may not seem compatible with comedy, she has a way of connecting with her audiences and enlightening them through empathy and understanding.

Indeed, despite her challenges with autism and homelessness, Gadsby's gained tremendous success. A finalist in Australia's Raw Comedy Competition in 2006, she went on to appear at high-profile festivals, including the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Montreal's Just for Laughs Festival, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the New Zealand International Comedy Festival, winning a number of prestigious awards in the process. Her 2018 groundbreaking Netflix special Nanette elevated her fame further, garnering her a Peabody Award as well as a Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special.

The following year, she began touring with a new show, Douglas, which also aired on Netflix. It received rave reviews as well, and resulted in a rare distinction: an honorary doctorate from the University of Tasmania. Her new stage show, Body of Work, ought to ensure that the accolades keep coming, proving once again that there's a thin divide between humor and philosophy. Gadsby performs at the Capitol Theatre (50 W. 200 South) on Saturday, June 4 at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $57.75 — $191.50. Visit arttix.org for tickets and additional details. (Lee Zimmerman)

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"Weird Al" Yankovic / Emo Phillips
The fact that "Weird Al" Yankovic dubbed his current tour the "Unfortunate Return of the Ridiculously Self-indulgent, Ill-Advised Vanity Tour" speaks to the absurdity and eccentricity this superb satirist has shared for more than 40 years. Championed by L.A. deejay Dr. Demento in the late '70s and early '80s, he had his first hit with a take-off on the Knack's "My Sharona"—rebooted as "My Bologna"—and successfully followed up with parodies of Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust" ("Another One Rides the Bus"), Joan Jett's "I Love Rock 'n' Roll" ("I Love Rocky Road") and Michael Jackson's "Beat It" ("Eat It").

One of the biggest-selling comedy recording artist of all time, and a five-time Grammy winner (!), he made history when his 2014 release Mandatory Fun became the first comedy album to enter the Billboard Top 200 at number one. With Top 40 singles in each of the last four decades and a successful career as a video music director, actor, author and screenwriter, this weirdo warrants respect. Notably, he goes back to basics on his current tour, forsaking theatrics in order to rock out with his "serious" songs as well.

Opening act Emo Phillips, meanwhile, boasts over 7,000 stand-up comedy shows, a pudding-top hairdo, a falsetto voice and child-like mannerisms, thereby adding to the weirdness and wackiness of the evening overall. "Weird Al" Yankovic and Emo Philips perform at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre, 50 W 200 S, Sunday, June 5 at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $49.50, or $329 for A Meet & Greet Experience. Visit arttix.org for tickets and additional details. (LZ)

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Interdisciplinary Arts Collective: a wall for the body, a circle for the soul, a fruit for your memory
The queer experience is no single monolithic experience; for every individual, it's a process made up of collected experiences. Interdisciplinary Arts Collective—a local group focusing on experimental and avant-garde work—attempts to evoke that complexity with a wall for the body, a circle for the soul, a fruit for your memory, a mix of music, dance, poetry and visual art that allows attendees a similar ability to create their own experience of the performance.

Inspired by Jeanette Winterson's 1985 coming-of-age novel Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit and built on the infrastructure of John Cage's 1967 composition Musicircus, wall/circle/fruit is described by the artists as "a queer experiment in memory as myth-making, the scriptures we write to understand our own past, and the crossing of thresholds." The musicians, dancers and other creators of IAC will at various times be scattered throughout the performance area, allowing guests to move between artists and build their own experience of the piece. Music includes not just Cage but Mozart and Schumann, with poetry including works by Adrienne Rich, Kaveh Akbar and Alberto Ríos.

The show runs June 3-5 at the Uintah Steel workshop (1820 Printers Row, West Valley City), with performances 7:30 p.m. nightly. Admission is pay-what-you-can at the door via cash or Venmo; all proceeds go directly to the artists. Because the space is a working factory, guests are required to wear safety glasses and closed-toe shoes during the performance. Visit interdisciplinaryartscollective.com/musicircus for additional information. (Scott Renshaw)

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