Here’s what to do in Boston this weekend

MUSIC

Huun Huur Tu

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Friday, 8 p.m.
First Church in Cambridge
11 Garden St., Cambridge
$28, 617-876-4275
www.worldmusic.org

This group comes from the tiny nation of Tuva, a part of Russia on the border with Mongolia most famous globally for Tuvan throat singing, a technique that permits a vocalist to sing three notes at once. There are actually several sub-techniques within the umbrella of Tuvan throat singing; Huun Huur Tu are masters of the most popular type, “khoomei.”

Mahler: Symphony No. 9

Friday, 8 p.m.
Symphony Hall
301 Mass. Ave., Boston
$25-$100, 617-236-0999
www.bostonphil.org

Gustav Mahler knew he was dying when he wrote his monumental final symphony, and it closes his career with the epicness turned up to 11, expressing the profound anxiety of death but also the potential for peace that may yet lie beyond it, with passages of monstrousness and others of fragile beauty. Benjamin Zander leads the Boston Philharmonic through this journey into mortality.

The Little Blue One

Thursday through Saturday
Plaza Theater, Boston Center for the Arts
527 Tremont St., Boston
$20-$30, 617-933-8600
www.bostontheatrescene.com

This is a world premiere contemporary opera written by the young composer Dominick DiOrio and performed by the Juventas New Music Ensemble. Based on an Italian folktale, it tells the surreal narrative of a troubled albino adolescent girl whose dies her hair blue in the face of mockery, and locked in his palace. Hey, at least her dad’s cool with blue hair!

DANCE

New Eruptions

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Friday through May 11
Sanctuary Theater
400 Harvard St., Cambridge
$40, 617-354-7467
www.ballettheater.org

The final concert of the Jose Mateo Ballet Theater’s season pairs Mateo’s 2012 piece “Taking Turns”, set to a string quartet by Phillip Glass, with a brand new, as-yet-unnamed premiere piece. Our inner middle schooler can’t help but snicker and read some sexual innuendo into the program’s title, but it may not be entirely inappropriate—it is springtime, after all.

THEATER

Legally Blonde: The Musical

Thursday and Friday
Berklee Performance Center
136 Mass. Ave., Boston
$8-$18, 617-747-2261
www.berklee.edu/bpc

How did the premise of Amanda Brown’s 2001 novel “Legally Blonde”—a seemingly superficial, ditzy sorority girl becomes an ace lawyer, giving everyone no choice but to take her seriously—resonate so much that it found even more successful film and Broadway adaptations? Something to consider as you watch this Berklee College of Music production, and Congress continues to debate equal pay for women.

Penelope

Friday through May 3
Loeb Drama Center
64 Brattle St., Cambridge
$8-$12, 617-547-8300
www.hrdctheater.com

The Harvard-Radcliffe Dramatic Society presents this play, a riff on the “Odyssey”. It focuses on the suitors vying for the heart of Penelope—who’s saving herself for her husband, Odysseus, presently on a very meandering trip back home from the Trojan War—as they bicker over who deserves her most. It all takes place, somewhat eccentrically, in a drained-out swimming pool.

White Rabbit, Red Rabbit

Monday through May 12
Plaza Theater, Boston Center for the Arts
527 Tremont St., Boston
Free, ZeitgeistTickets@gmail.com
www.zeitgeiststage.com

This experimental play by Iranian playwright Nassim Soleimanpour has no director and no set actors—for each of the three performances there will be a different actor, and he or she will have been shown the script for the first time. Note: tickets are free, but you have to email the address above to reserve yourself some.

COMEDY

Shane Mauss

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Thursday through Saturday
Laugh Boston
425 Summer St., Boston
$20-$25, 21+, 617-725-2844
www.laughboston.com

This comic hails from Wisconsin and has a decidedly Midwestern style of deadpan, common sense delivery. You’d never take him for an “edgy” comedian, but there’s a sly darkness that occasionally rears its head amidst his otherwise charmingly silly observations about societal nonsense. It’s almost like if Kenneth from “30 Rock” tried to be a comic—the two even look like long-lost brothers.

MOVIES

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

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Sunday, 7 p.m.
Harvard Film Archive
24 Quincy St., Cambridge
$7-$9, 617-496-3211
hcl.harvard.edu/hfa

With Congressional approval ratings at an all-time low, this ultimately hopeful 1939 drama from Frank Capra may be more relevant than ever. Jimmy Stewart plays the idealistic young senator who actually wants to change things and fight corruption. He finds himself stymied every step of the way, but he does not give up. It’s sort of the antithesis of “House of Cards”.

BOOKS

Dan Falk

Saturday, 7 p.m.
Harvard Book Store
1256 Mass. Ave., Cambridge
Free, 617-661-1515
www.harvard.com

As the standard line goes, what emerges from Shakespeare, aside from great drama and poetry, is the voice of modernity. Journalist Dan Falk will discuss the connections between this birth of modern consciousness and the emergence, in Shakespeare’s day, of modern science, which he’s charted in his new book “The Science of Shakespeare: A New Look at the Playwright’s Universe”.

ART

Evelyn Rydz: Forever Yours

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Through September 14
Museum of Fines Arts, Boston
465 Huntington Ave., Boston
$23-$25, 617-267-9300
www.mfa.org

This exhibition features drawings and photographs from Evelyn Rydz’s travels on the beaches of Hawaii, where she became fascinated with the small pieces of human detritus—bottle caps, pieces of glass, etc.—that wash ashore, and the way nature tries, not totally successfully, to assimilate them. What’s funny is how they almost look like natural debris—as if they’re in disguise.

Jordan Eagles: Blood Dust

Friday through June 29
Mills Gallery, Boston Center for the Arts
539 Tremont St., Boston
Free, 617-426-5000
www.bcaonline.org

These sculpture-paintings by Jordan Eagles utilize actual cattle blood’s to launch an unflinching meditation on life and death and what might perhaps come after. Some of these pieces date back to 2011, their blood now dried up into the titular “dust”, which Eagles connects with the ominous line in Genesis: “Dust you are, and to dust you shall return.” Heavy!

ROCK SHOWS

Local H

Thursday, 9 p.m.
Great Scott
1222 Comm. Ave., Allston
$15-$17, 18+, 800-745-3000
www.ticketmaster.com

Long before it was hip to eschew a bass player, Local H burst out of Chicago in the early 90’s with just a guitarist and drummer. Their biggest hit was 1994’s “Bound for the Floor”, but our favorite track—the anti-West Coast anthem “California Songs”—came along ten years later. Their most recent album, “Hallelujah! I’m a Bum”, dropped in 2012.

The Uncluded

Sunday, 8 p.m.
The Sinclair
52 Church St., Cambridge
$16-$18, 18+, 800-745-3000
www.ticketmaster.com

The Uncluded is the unlikely duo of alt-rap MC Aesop Rock and twee folkie Kimya Dawson. What’s crazy is how well it works. Their third single, “Delicate Cycle” features Aesop spitting over nothing a typically stuttering open-position guitar pattern from Dawson, who provides a sung chorus. On other tracks, Dawson sing-raps charmingly, assimilating herself to Aesop’s idiom. Just call it twip-hop.

Slint

Tuesday, 7 p.m.
The Paradise
967 Comm. Ave., Boston
$25, 18+, 800-745-3000
www.ticketmaster.com

Early heroes of college radio rock, Slint formed in 1986 in Louisville, Kentucky, and broke up not long after finishing their seminal 1990 album “Spiderland”, whose spooky, skeletal post-hardcore sound inspired droves of murky, mumbly imitators. Sporadic reunions began occurring in 2005, and a documentary on the band, Lance Bangs’ “Breadcrumb Trail”, was released this year.



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