THE ESSENTIAL A&E PICKS FOR JUN 23 - 29 | Entertainment Picks | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly


Ryan Hamilton, Hunt Slonem: Catch Me If You Can @ Gallery MAR, Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me! Stand-Up Tour, and more.

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Ryan Hamilton
A lot of arts and entertainment events have been postponed or cancelled over the past two years, and most of them were related in one way or another to waves of COVID cases. Not so for comedian Ryan Hamilton, whose planned dates in January of this year were pushed back for a reason that sounds like the set-up for a joke, but is literally true: He was hit by a bus. Back in January, Hamilton was involved in an accident as a pedestrian that left him with a broken arm, several broken ribs and a collapsed lung. I think he's forgiven that he couldn't make the shows.

That incident probably will become the set-up for a joke, though, if Hamilton's history of self-deprecating humor is any indication. When he appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon in 2019, he built a bit around experiencing an "adult fall." "I fell on the streets of New York City," Hamilton said. "Everyone asked, 'Are you okay,' but let me make this point: Not everyone meant it. Two 25-year girls went, '[snicker] are you okay?' Zero empathy in their reaction. The words came out of their mouth, but what they really meant was, 'I wish my camera was on for that.'"

Hamilton makes his long-awaited return to the Kingsbury Hall (1395 E. Presidents Circle) stage for three shows June 24 (8 p.m.) and June 25 (7 p.m. & 9:30 p.m.). Tickets are $48.25 - $58.25, and patrons are requested to wear face masks while indoors. Visit for tickets and other event information. (Scott Renshaw)

  • Allison Dayka

Hunt Slonem: Catch Me If You Can @ Gallery MAR
If you're an artist, and there's a particular subject that keeps appearing in your work in exponentially increasing quantities, there's a certain poetry to that subject being rabbits. Or, to be precise in the case of New York-based artist Hunt Slonem, "bunnies," as Slonem is careful to specify, rather than "rabbits." It's important to the artist to capture that sense of child-like perspective evoked by the cutesy name of bunnies, since approaching his work with the wonder of first discovery is a huge part of what he does.

This week, Park City's Gallery MAR hosts a one-man exhibition of Slonem's work, Catch Me If You Can. The prolific artist has always been inspired by new experiences and the idea of letting art convey that innocence, whether those simple images from the natural world—not just his trademark bunnies, but also butterflies and tropical birds, including those he keeps in a personal aviary—are on canvas, or in public art projects like those he created for Metairie and Kenner, Louisiana. For him, approaching the same subject over and over again takes on the quality of a spiritual practice; "I'm more interested in doing it in the sense of prayer, with repetition," Slonem says. "It's really a form of worship."

Catch Me If You Can opens at Gallery MAR (436 Main St., Park City) on Friday, June 24, with an opening reception 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.; closing date is as yet undetermined. Regular gallery hours are Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Visit for additional information. (SR)

click to enlarge LIVE AT THE ECCLES
  • Live at the Eccles

Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me! Stand-Up Tour
For more than 20 years, NPR's weekly quiz show Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me! has turned a roundup of the week's events into a funny and freewheeling piece of entertainment. The format has even taken the show on the road over the years, allowing audiences to witness a live recording of the standard program. Yet even those shows didn't really showcase the full range of comedic skills possessed by the show's panelists when let loose to do their thing.

Four regular WW...DTM panelists are currently on the road together for a full evening of stand-up comedy fun. Your host is Alonzo Bodden, perhaps best know for winning Season 3 of Last Comic Standing before becoming a regular on late-night talk. Mo Rocca has had a career as a writer and entertainer for more than 25 years, including a stint as a correspondent on The Daily Show. Negin Farsad is a comedian and author of How to Make White People Laugh, and a filmmaker whose work includes 3rd Street Blackout. And Helen Hong is a veteran stand-up performer and actor with roles including Inside Llewyn Davis and Parks & Recreation.

The Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me! stand-up tour hits the Eccles Theater (131 S. Main St.) on Friday, Sept. 24, with a 7 p.m. showtime. Tickets range from $32.50 – $99.50; Live at the Eccles presentations continue to require proof of vaccination or proof of negative COVID test taken within 72 hours of performance time in order to attend. Visit for tickets and additional event information. (SR)

  • Tor Books

Brian McClellan: In the Shadow of Lightning @ The King's English
The world of fantasy fiction is overflowing with subgenres, but it's still interesting to hear Utah author Brian McClellan describe his work—exemplified by series like the Powder Mage Trilogy and Gods of Blood and Powder—as "flintlock fantasy," emphasizing their location in a world that includes magic but also the basic technology of an Industrial Revolution society. And while he started writing fantasy as a teenager, it wasn't necessarily inevitable that he would find himself focused on that genre. Then, as a young college student, he took a writing class taught by a young then-unknown writer by the name of Brandon Sanderson—on two separate occastions—and Sanderson's end-of-semester notes encouraged McClellan to keep giving this writing thing a shot.

He continues giving it a shot with In the Shadow of Lightning, launching a new series called Glass Immortals. It's the story of Demir, born to a position of privilege but voluntarily an outcast from that world. He returns to his family after the death of his mother, only to discover that the strange substance that powers their world, godglass, is running out, threatening the stability of everything.

Brian McClellan visits The King's English Bookshop (1511 S. 1500 East) for a reading and signing on Wednesday, June 29 at 6 p.m. The event is free and open to the public, scheduled for the store's patio; places in the signing line will be reserved for those who pre-order the book. To get the book, or for other event information, visit (SR)

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