Saturday, 2 to 5:30 p.m.
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German Society of Philadelphia
611 Spring Garden St.
The German Society of Philadelphia hosts its fourth annual Bierfest — and that’s spelled correctly, because we’re talking about German beer here, with a fine local variety of lagers, weizens and bocks on tap. There’s also entertainment from the Philly Roller Girls, rock ’n‘ roll polka from Polkadelphia, a little corner called the Beer and Cheese Cave and other delights.
Lunar New Year Celebration
Friday, 6 p.m.
3701 Chestnut St.
International House hosts this smorgasbord of traditional Chinese food, music and dance, celebrating the Year of the Sheep, or the Goat or the Ram — depends on who you ask. But the humble animal is supposed to preside over a calm, productive lunar cycle, and is associated with the number eight, said to be auspicious in Chinese numerology.
Lost Ice: What the Birds Saw
Through March 31
Fairmount Water Works
640 Waterworks Dr.
This four-panel painting by local artist Pamela Tudor is a minimal but powerful comic strip-like sequence imagining a bird’s eye view (literally) of rapidly melting ice near the North Pole. Tudor cuts through the tedious “debate” around global warming’s causes — all our bird knows is that the ice is melting, fast. And what, if anything, will we do?
Linda Sosangelis: Opulence
Through March 8
236 S. 22nd St.
In these paintings, artist Linda Sosangelis looks back to the age of Orientalism, the Western fascination with Eastern culture that raged in the 19th century. The movement may not have been free of cultural bias, but Sosangelis’ paintings are concerned simply with the beauty of their images, whose seductive magnetism she reproduces through the meticulous lens of the 17th century Dutch masters.
Songwriters in the Round: Happy Birthday Kurt Cobain
Friday, 8 p.m.
20 S. Second St.
$10-$12, 21+, 215-928-0978
If Kurt Cobain were still with us, the reluctant King of Grunge would be 48 this Friday, which ought to make those who came of age in the ’90s feel pretty old. Well, at least the songs never age! Five musicians will pay tribute to Cobain’s formidable legacy at this show.
Sunday and Monday
300 S. Broad St.
Dirk Brosse leads the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia through Schoenberg’s poetry-inspired breakthrough work “Verklarte Nacht” (“Transfigured Night”) and a chamber-sized arrangement of Mahler’s fourth symphony, featuring soprano Chloe Olivia Moore, singing “Das himmlische Leben” (“This Heavenly Life”), the German folk song Mahler incorporated into the final movement, in which a child imagines Heaven.
BalletX Winter Series 2015
265 S Broad St.
BalletX performs an diverse set of works, including Spanish choreographer Cayetano Soto’s “Malasangre,” a tribute to the Cuban singer La Lupe; Val Caniparoli’s “Triptychm,” which explores the before, during and after of war; and a new work by Filipino-American choreographer Norbert De La Cruz III. All are premieres for the company.
Thursday, 6 p.m.
3601 Walnut St.
As the debates over misogyny in video games, collectively called “Gamergate,” rage on, author Adrienne Shaw takes a more universal perspective in her book “Gaming at the Edge,” exploring how marginalized groups within the gaming community relate to their status and the way they’re represented, both in games and the media at large.
Through March 1
7137 Germantown Ave., Mt. Airy
Quintessence Theater Group presents Steven Berkoff’s adaptation of Franz Kafka’s most popular story, a surreal nightmare that still manages to be a little funny. Gregor Samsa, a regular man, wakes up one day to find he’s been transformed into a giant bug — no explanation offered, and none ever comes. What’s a giant bug to do? And why doesn’t his family seem to care?
‘The Book of Esther: The Journey of Queen Vashti and Queen Esther’
Sunday, 2 p.m.
401 S. Broad St.
It’s rare to hear a story from the Bible described as progressive, but many scholars have read proto-feminist elements in the Book of Esther, with its strong female figures Vashti and Esther. That’s the tack taken by New York’s Ariel Rivka Dance for this show, telling the story, which lies at the root of the Jewish festival Purim, with an all-female cast.