Music and Performances
Gary Farmer & The Troublemakers. He's not just an award-winning actor, and he's not just an award-winning actor and director. Gary Miller is also a director and a Native American activist best known for his roles in films like Dead Man and Pow Wow Highway. He's coming to Tucson with his five-piece blues, roots and jam band to play a night full of both originals and covers. Joining him is his friend Derek Miller, who has been playing music for three decades and is known as a hotshot on the indigenous music scene. 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 23. Sea of Glass Center for the Arts, 330 E. Seventh St. Adults $15 in advance, $20 day-of. Teens 12 to 15, $12 in advance, $17 day-of. Kids $4 either way.
Equinox and Beyond. Join the downtown performance artists at Cirque Roots for their annual celebration of community and art! Tucson is, of course, one big celebration of community and art, in a way, but on this night, check out a variety show, beats by DJ Cruise Control and lots of spontaneous art. The fall equinox (the day when the sun shines directly on the equator and day and night are nearly the same length) happens at exactly 6:54 p.m. in Tucson, so consider this event the after party, or a party to ring in the fall season. 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22. Cirque Roots, 901 N. 13th Ave. Free.
Beethoven Odyssey. The Tucson Symphony Orchestra is back with their 2018-2019 season, and they're kicking it off with a bang: Conductor José Luis Gomez will be leading the orchestra in playing music from 2001: A Space Odyssey on its 50th anniversary, including Richard Strauss' tone poem Thus Spake Zarathustra. In addition, special guest and violin superstar Anne Akiko Meyers—one of the most in-demand violinists in the world—will be featured in Beethoven's Violin Concerto, one of his best-known and most important works. 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 21 and 2 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 23. Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. $15 to $86+.
Galileo. This weekend is your last chance to see the Rogue Theatre's production of this play by Bertolt Brecht, translated by Charles Laughton. It's fitting that it's being staged at the Rogue Theatre, because it's a (fictionalized) telling of all the struggles Galileo Galilei went through when he went rogue and confirmed the Copernican model of the solar system. With the headquarters of the Catholic Church being located on Earth, you can imagine the Catholic Church not being very pleased at the news that the Earth was not the center of the universe. Cynthia Meier directs, Jake Sorgen did the original composition and music direction, and a discussion with the cast and director follows each performance. Thursday, Sept. 20 through Sunday, Sept. 23, with 7:30 p.m. performances Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. matinees on Saturday and Sunday. The Rogue Theatre at the Historic Y, 300 E. University Blvd. $38 GA.
Tucson Storytellers: How Tucson Became Home. Well, how did Tucson become home for you? Are you a born-and-raised local? Did you move here for school or a job? Did the wind just sort of blow you here? Maybe you lived here for years before you had a moment where you felt like Tucson was really home. The Arizona Daily Star, This Is Tucson and the Tucson Museum of Art are hosting this event in which a handful of storytellers will share their stories about how this sweet little city became home for them. What a way to learn more about your neighbors, and to take some time to reflect on your own experience in the Old Pueblo. 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26. Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block, 140 N. Main Ave. $10 GA, $5 students.
The Grand Canyon Mystery. Join Live Theatre Workshop as they tell this original story about a gang of critters on the north rim of the Grand Canyon getting ready for the winter. As they're taking stock off their supplies and shelter, they realize the food supply they've saved up all year is gone! Who did this? Was it the raccoon? Maybe the snake? Probably the weasel. Or worse still, was it someone in the inner circle of the Fraternal Order of the Great Northern Rim (FOGNeR), like Barry Buffalo or Alfred Binghampton Elk III? This show is kid friendly, of course, but there's plenty of humor adults will enjoy as well. After all, who doesn't love a good mystery? 12:30 p.m. on Sundays from Sept. 23 through Nov. 11. Live Theatre Workshop, 5317 E. Speedway Blvd. $10 adults, $7 kids.
Thriller! With Lisa Otey and the Desert Divas. It's only a matter of time before the wheel of fashion comes back around and we all get to have fantastically huge '80s hair again, right? After all, retro is in. To hold you over until then, head over to the Gaslight Theatre for this night of paying tribute to the likes of Michael Jackson, Journey, Prince, The Pointer Sisters, Diana Ross, Joan Jett and more! Legwarmers are not required, but are heavily encouraged. 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, Sept. 24. The Gaslight Theatre, 7010 E. Broadway Blvd. $22.95 adult, $20.95 senior/student/military, $12.95 children.
The Great Outdoors
Yoga Under the Harvest Moon. Yoga and cocktails? On a roof? During the full moon? With serenity and alcohol inside you, Agustin Kitchen beneath you and a full moon above you, what could go wrong? This two-hour event might just be the perfect way to kick off the weekend with Leah Shaffer, a yoga instructor from local studio Om Yoga. If you make a reservation in advance, you can fill your stomach up with 20 percent off a meal at Agustin Kitchen right after the event. It will go well with your full heart. Breathe in the good. Breathe out everything that isn't custom cocktails and rooftop yoga. 7:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 21. Agustin Kitchen, 100 S. Avenida del Convento. $25.
National Public Lands Day. Established in 1994, this event has become the nation's largest single-day volunteer effort. This year is not only the 25th anniversary of National Public Lands Day, but it's also the 50th anniversary of the National Trails System and National Wild & Scenic Rivers system. How can you celebrate? The most fun choice is to visit a national park for free! That's right! They're all free today. Or, you can get involved with a volunteer work Fall Pumpkin Celebration. If you can't believe it's already pumpkin season, you'll have no choice but to believe it once you spend a day in the pumpkin patch at Apple Annie's enjoying all-you-can-eat pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin pies, pumpkin bread and homemade cider donuts. If you're more of a "grab it and go" person than a "frolic through the pumpkin patch" person, then you can just pick a pumpkin out of the produce barn or at the pumpkin stand. And be sure to check out Arizona's largest corn maze! Starting this weekend, every Saturday and Sunday through Oct. 28. The foodstuffs are at the orchard location, 2081 W. Hardy Road, open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during September and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. during October. Pumpkin picking is at the pumpkin patch, 6405 W. Williams Road, open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. during September and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. during October. Free admission, pumpkins priced by weight.
Bow Tie Block Party. The El Rio Vecinos, a philanthropic group that supports the El Rio Community Health Center, is throwing this great event for you to put on a bow tie and some boots while also supporting El Rio's emergency dental fund for children. DJ Herm, Grupo Mateca and Joe Barron will provide live music; local breweries and restaurants will provide food; and general admission tickets include food, music and five beverage tickets. VIP tickets get you access to the VIP room, free valet, exclusive food samples and two extra drinks. 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22. Tucson Scottish Rite Cathedral, 160 S. Scott Ave. $65 to $95.
The Sorting Party! Calling all Hufflepuffs! Well really, calling all Harry Potter fans, no matter which house they fall into. But we all know Hufflepuffs could use a little extra love. And hey, if you haven't taken the Pottermore quiz yet, this is your perfect opportunity to do so, so you know what to dress up as. Espresso Art Cafe is hosting a night of live music, cafe and bar specials and a photo booth, which, even without moving pictures, is so wonderful and fun that it might just be the closest thing to magic we have. Be sure to dress up in your best robes or get dolled up as your favorite creature. Accio espresso! 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 21. Espresso Art Cafe, 942 E. University Blvd.
Fun in General
Old and New World Harvest Demonstration. The Presidio San Agustin is back at it again with the hands-on educational activities that keep all ages engaged. In this presentation, you'll learn all about the crops that are native to our sweet Sonoran Desert, as well as the plants and foodstuffs originally from Europe. It never hurts to learn a little bit more about the desert we call home, and it especially never hurts to work up an appetite while you're doing it. (We don't know if you've noticed, but there are a LOT of good places to eat in Tucson.) 1 to p.m. Sunday, Sept. 23. Presidio San Agustin del Tucson, 196 N. Court Ave. Included with admission, $5 general, $1 kids 6 to 14, and free for members and kids 5 and under.