This Weekend in Charlotte (2/19/14): Rock of Ages, Charlotte Symphony, Demi Lovato, & HousingFest
The first pick of the weekend will transport you through time. While Grease may idealize the ‘50s as a rollicking time of dancing and vocally gifted teenagers, Rock of Ages does the same for the big hair and big voices of the 1980s. The narrative follows a budding romance between a busboy and a waitress, both with aspirations for something greater. The show, running at the Belk Theater all weekend, features tunes from the likes of Journey, Pat Benatar and REO Speedwagon.
While that first show is theatre emulating rock music, the latest in the Charlotte Symphony’s Pops series sees the orchestra and singers doing Broadway. Selections from The Wiz, Hairspray, and Wicked, among others, take visitors across the varied and magical worlds portrayed on the stage. The show runs Friday and Saturday at the Knight Theater.
Or maybe you’re looking for something funny, but a bit more intimate. If you’re a fan of FX’s The League, the Charlotte Comedy Zone has made it easy for you. Steve Rannazzisi, who plays fantasy-footballer Kevin on the show, brings his stand-up stylings to Charlotte for two nights.
Saturday gives you the opportunity to enjoy some live music while giving to a cause. HousingFest: A Concert to End Homelessness, benefitting the Urban Ministry Center’s HousingWorks program, provides money toward getting homes to those in need. Acts include The Blind Boys of Alabama and Jim Lauderdale. The Neighborhood Theatre show costs $25.
For more humor, with an added dose of music, check out the Wayne Brady performance at Knight Theater Sunday. The popular Whose Line Is It Anyway? contestant is both an improviser and talented singer.
Also, on Sunday: Demi Lovato fills the Time Warner Cable Arena with her mezzo soprano voice and danceable pop. The “Heart Attack” starlet returned to creating and performing music full-time in 2014, after a stint as a judge on The X Factor. At Amos’ Southend, Mayer Hawthorne adds some neosoul to the weekend. Andrew Cohen has played the role of hip-hop rapper/producer Haircut, but his most revered personality is Hawthorne, whose sound recalls the earlier days of Motown.