Dow, Sobrino and Fujiwara
This new jazz trio, comprised of bassist Andrew Dow, drummer Yuriano Sobrino and cellist Junko Fujiwara, will perform a mix of original pieces and improvised portions. They’re so new that they don’t have any recordings for us to check out, but it’s cool enough already just to see cello being used as a jazz instrument.
January 7, 8 p.m.
Third Life Studio, 33 Union Sq., Somerville
Philharmonic Funk Foundation
This group is exactly what it sounds like: they play funk with a full-fledged orchestra—strings, brass, woodwinds, the whole shebang. For this show, entitled “Under the Cherry Moon,” they’re paying tribute to Prince, an artist well deserving of such a grandiose treatment. “Dress code: funky disco,” they stipulate, and we suggest you heed, because the Purple One is watching.
January 6 and 7
Arts at the Armory, 191 Highland Ave., Somerville
Singer-songwriter Liza Anne achieves a beautifully wintry feel on much of her 2015 album “Two,” showing her mastery of a particular sort of sparse, folk-ish style, with its echo-laden vocals and sombre mood, that’s still having its moment. Some tracks, however, aim for brighter, more directly mainstream pop—she even employs the notorious “Millennial Whoop” on the single “Take it Back.”
January 6, 7 p.m.
Middle East Upstairs, 472 Mass. Ave., Cambridge
$10-$12, 18+, http://bit.ly/2hQVAfy
Aeronaut Brewing presents Fritz Lang’s 1927 masterpiece of dystopian speculative fiction, with live accompaniment by local artist Jeff Rapsis, who’ll create a whole orchestra on his synth. All these years later, and with so much advancement in movie magic, the film’s eerie visions remain transfixing, and its uncompromising socialist message just as urgent.
January 8, 7 p.m.
Aeronaut Brewing, 14 Tyler St., Somerville
$10, 21+, http://bit.ly/2iXk9Vu
Daughters of the Dust
The Brattle screens this 25th anniversary restoration of Julie Dash’s 1991 film about a family from South Carolina’s Gullah community, slave-descended islanders known for their unique creole culture, which preserved many West African words and customs. We find this family in the early 20th century, the younger generation seeking opportunity on the mainland, the older fearing the loss of their precious heritage.
January 6 through 11
Brattle Theater, 40 Brattle St., Cambridge
The Surprising Psychology of Everyday Life
Here’s a rare chance to get a real taste of a Harvard class. Adam Mastroianni, a Harvard Ph.D. candidate and stand up comic, is offering this five-session mini-course free to the public, asking such questions as “What makes us happy, why can’t we all agree, and are we really in control of our own thoughts?” Register through the link below.
January 10 through 19
Harvard University, 33 Kirkland St., Cambridge
In this play by British playwright Alistair McDowall, two brothers choose two very different ways to escape their grim surroundings. Luke is an inventor who’s just created an amazing device in his Council Estates flat; Rob sells drugs. The arrival of a wealthy contact of Rob sets off a chain of events that may put the fate of Universe at stake.
January 6 through January 21
Chelsea Theater Works, 189 Winnisimmet St., Chelsea
The Scottsboro Boys
SpeakEasy Stage has brought back this production for a bonus run. The 2010 Kander and Ebb musical tells the true story of a group of nine black teenagers who were falsely convicted of gang rape in 1930’s Alabama. The Broadway production scored 12 Tony nominations, and SpeakEasy’s has won a great deal of praise in its own right.
Through January 22
Calderwood Pavilion, 527 Tremont St., Boston
Doris Salcedo: The Materiality of Mourning
Harvard Art Museums present this Columbian artist, famed for her works processing the political violence in her war-torn homeland. One piece, “A Flor de Piel,” is a room-sized, hand-sewn tapestry made of preserved rose petals, all in memory of one nurse who was tortured to death, expressing with great beauty the irreplaceable loss of even a single human life.
Through April 9
Harvard Art Museums, 32 Quincy St., Cambridge
Countermoves: Cuba and Uganda
“We both went into other universes than our own,” says photographer Sean Kernan of this dual photo show. “But our responses were quite different.” Kernan took photos of a boxing club in Uganda, focusing on a single corner of a society, while his counterpart, Robin Z. Boger, travelled to Cuba, attempting to capture a larger, but less specific, range of existence.
January 11 through February 3
Chandler Gallery, 20 Sacramento St., Cambridge
Lesley University hosts this novelist and playwright who’ll read from her ambitious new 800 page novel “The Castle Cross the Magnet Carter,” which charts the lives of two sets of brothers born in the 1940’s, one pair white, the other black. There will also be a staged reading of a section of Korthron’s play “A Cool Dip in the Barren Saharan Crick.”
January 6, 6:30 p.m.
Marran Theater, 34 Mellen St., Cambridge
Stand Up at the Green Room
This local stand up showcase returns 2017, one of many opportunities for Boston comedy fans to catch great comedians close-up, without the crowd and the ticket prices of the bigger clubs. This lineup includes Molly Dugan, Pamela Ross, Ryan Chani, Angela Sawyer, Jere Pilapil, Kylie Alexander and Katie McCarthy. The venue isn’t a bar, but the show is BYOB for those so inclined.
Jan 5, 8:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
The Green Room, 62 Bow St., Somerville