Arts and Culture

‘Thurgood’ at the Bushfire Theatre on Friday and Saturday

May 18, 2018

This weekend you can get a rare glimpse inside the Bushfire Theatre for the Performing Arts at 52nd and Locust (224 S. 52nd St.) for the staging of Thurgood, the acclaimed bio-play about the former Supreme Court justice and civil rights icon.

Written by television and film director and producer George Stevens Jr., Thurgood is a stripped down portrayal of Marshall’s life as told by him and includes seminal moments in American history (the announcement of the verdict in Brown vs. Board of Education in the play would regular elicit celebratory hoots and hollers from audiences on Broadway).

Bushfire founder Al Simpkins will direct.

Founded in 1977, the Bushfire stages a few performances a year. The theater itself dates back to 1909, when it served as a Vaudeville house called The Locust. It was later converted to a movie theater until it was abandoned and fell into disrepair.

Tickets for Thurgood range from $15 (for kids) to $30. The show starts at 7:30 tonight and Saturday night.

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Mural unveiling (and food and music) for esteemed journalist, West Philly native Ed Bradley (updated)

May 17, 2018

The Ed Bradley mural at 949 Belmont Ave. (Photo by Steve Weinik for Mural Arts Philadelphia).

UPDATE: The event has been postponed until Saturday, June 16 due to the weather.

Mural Arts Philadelphia will unveil a new piece honoring journalist and West Philly native Ed Bradley on Saturday, May 19 June 16 at noon at the intersection of Belmont and Wyalusing Streets (949 Belmont St.).

Bradley was best known as a reporter for some 26 years on 60 Minutes. He was the first Black television correspondent to cover the White House and won dozens of awards during his career. That career in journalism began at Philadelphia radio station WDAS. Bradley had also been a public school teacher in Philadelphia, soon after he graduated from Cheyney University.

Bradley died in 2006 at age 65 of complications from lymphocytic leukemia.  Continue Reading

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Dinner in Three Acts: Delicious fundraiser for Curio Theatre

May 14, 2018

Dinner in Three Acts is a fun and delicious way to support educational programs at Curio Theatre.

Curio Theatre Company, the community theater at 48th and Baltimore, is starting an exciting new fundraising tradition. On Sunday, May 20, the company will be “producing” a Dinner in Three Acts – a three-course dinner at selected West Philadelphia homes. This is how it works:

Act One – 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. – Guests will start with registration and appetizers at one home.
Act Two – 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. – For their entree, guests will choose one style of cuisine from a varied selection served for groups of 10 to 15 people.
Act Three – 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. – Guests will return to the theater for dessert with coffee and tea.  Continue Reading

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Unveiling of new version of the ‘Broken Chains” mural at 52nd and Larchwood this Saturday

May 11, 2018

The design for the new “Broken Chains” mural at 500 S. 52nd St. (southwest corner of 52nd and Larchwood).

A new “Broken Chains” mural at 52nd and Larchwood, where several buildings are undergoing extensive renovation, will be unveiled Saturday, May 12th at 3 p.m.

The original Broken Chains mural (see below), a tribute to Black empowerment and leadership, will be removed as part of the ongoing renovation of the building at 500 S. 52nd (southwest corner of 52nd and Larchwood), one of several buildings near that intersection that the local development company, Spak Group, is renovating from the ground up. When completed, the building will include ground floor commercial (a sit-down restaurant) and three apartments.  Continue Reading

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Weekly Cedar Park Jazz series returns June 1

May 10, 2018

A great Cedar Park summer tradition – Cedar Park Jazz Series – is returning June 1st to 49th and Baltimore! The series, presented by Cedar Park Neighbors, will run through July 27th with performances every Friday, from 6-8 p.m. (weather permitting).

The series kicks off with a performance by pianist and composer Alfred “Alfie” Pollitt. Here’s a lineup of this year’s performances:


As always, all performances are free and open to the public. Just bring your lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy the music.

For updates, please check the Cedar Park Neighbors Facebook page.

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From Dollar Stroll to movies in Clark Park: UCD bringing back signature summer events

May 4, 2018

Baltimore Avenue Dollar StrollUniversity City District (UCD) has announced the return of their signature summer events this summer, including Baltimore Avenue Dollar Stroll and 40th Street Summer Concert Series. UCD has released their 2018 “Summer in University City” event schedule, so check out what’s happening this spring, summer and early fall:

40th Street Summer Series

The 40th Street Summer Series, co-produced by University City District, the University of Pennsylvania, and The Rotunda, returns to the green area behind the Walnut Street Library at 40th Street with free monthly concerts and
performances. This year’s programming offers a wide array of musical styles and performers and will run on five Saturdays from May through September.  Continue Reading

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