Best Bets

No, the band doesn’t travel with its treadmills, nor is it able to pack up its monstrous Rube Goldberg machine and take it on the road. But the live show justifies the reputation set by those addictive viral music videos. May 12 at Visulite Theatre.

It’s no wonder that Giuseppe Verdi found William Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello to be ripe for operatic adaptation — it includes all the things any good opera (or soap opera for that matter) should have: spurned lovers, accusations of adultery, emotional manipulations, murders clouded by misdirection, and untimely acts of betrayal. If you find that the twists and turns of the plot are a bit hard to keep up with in Italian, here’s a hint: it’s all Iago’s fault. As long as you know that, you are free to focus on the talent of Opera Carolina and forget about the subtitles. May 6-8 at Belk Theater.

Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
Perhaps the most remarkable thing about Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers is how their innate coolness seems to endure. Petty’s understated rock vibe maintains its effortless appeal with fans from multiple generations. What could be better than a freewheeling evening spent sprawled on the lawn beside the one you love while Petty croons "Here Comes My Girl" with the same grit and fervor as he did when he recorded the song in 1978? Nothing beats pure American rock and roll played outdoors with the anticipation of summer in the air. May 7 at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre.

Femme Fest 2010
We’re all for a display of cultural girl power—especially when it’s being harnessed for a great cause. This festival brings together artists, musicians, filmmakers, and writers from around the city and country to not only pay tribute to the many fabulous females who contribute to the arts, but also to raise money to support Center of Hope, a local homeless shelter for women and children. Rock on, ladies. Rock on. May 22.

NASCAR Hall of Fame Grand Opening
We’ve spent the last four years speculating on what the NASCAR Hall of Fame will do for tourism, what it will look like in our skyline, and what kind of experiences it will offer for die-hard fans and NASCAR novices alike. The wait is over. The doors open with a bang: NASCAR celebrities, outdoor activities for families, food vendors, and a free live concert by country music trio Love and Theft. Additionally, tickets are on sale for the first Hall of Fame induction ceremony on May 23, when the inaugural class (Earnhardt! Petty!) will be welcomed into the Hall of Honors. May 11.

On the Radar

Other events you should have on your calendar

  • 5/8 Beer,Bourbon,and Barbecue, Symphony Park at SouthPark
  • 5/9 John Hiatt & The Combo, KnightTheater
  • 5/12 Norah Jones, Ovens Auditorium
  • 5/19-6/13 Wicked, Belk Theater
  • Through 5/29 Welcome to the Monkey House, CAST
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