Below is a list of things to do in Charlotte that we compose for each print issue of Queen City Nerve. Our city is kind of opening, kind of not, so not all of these are virtual events as we were highlighting at the beginning of the lockdown, but plenty are. COVID is still going strong, however, so party at your own risk. Wear a mask.
April 22 | 12:30 p.m. | Virtual
What: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library’s Community Read series focuses on creating a community dialogue around the themes of racism and social justice. The idea is to encourage community members to read (or listen) to books on current events and topics then participate in discussions. In partnership with Central Piedmont Community College, Cedric Dean, a formerly incarcerated criminal justice system reformer and author, will lead a discussion about race and the justice system. The discussion will also include connections to the Community Read selection book Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson.
April 22 | 9 p.m. | Virtual
What: The exuberant and rhythmic brass funk Mardi Gras Indian band based out of New Orleans celebrates Earth Day with the release of their new album, My People. The new release is the much-anticipated follow up to their Grammy-nominated album Spyboy, continuing the group’s distillation of pure joy, which encompasses generations of New Orleans musical expression, but it also reminds listeners how hard-won that joy is with its declaration, “My people, we’re still here.” Popmatters called the collective, “grand gumbo of singing, intoxicating rhythms and deep funk grooves that are impossible to resist.”
April 23 | 6 p.m. | Victoria Yards
What: Comedian, actor and writer Wolf has penned a number of sitcoms, including All of Us and Cuts, though he may be best known for his regular appearances on the round table of E!’s now-defunct late-night talk show Chelsea Lately. He also became a New York Times bestselling author for his contributions to Handler’s bestselling book Lies that Chelsea Hander Told Me. In addition to his stand-up comedy tours, Wolf also co-hosts the podcast Josh and Ross with fellow former Chelsea Lately round-table member Ross Mathews, in which the guys share their unique view on pop culture and the news of the day.
April 24 | 1 p.m. | Virtual
What: This virtual film series presents recent, internationally acclaimed and award-winning Latin-American films, specially curated for the Queen City. The documentary ESPERO TUA (RE)VOLTA depicts the Brazilian student movement from the protests of 2013 until the election of the new president, Jair Bolsonaro, in 2018. Inspired by the collective voice of the movement itself, the documentary is narrated by three high school students who represent central points of their struggle. The narrators’ jostling for space and time exposes the movement’s conflicts and demonstrates its complexity.
April 24 | 7 p.m. | Heist Brewery and Barrel Arts
What: Launched in 2010, The Wild Feathers have released three critically acclaimed studio albums, one live album and toured with major acts like Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson, all while continuously honing their blend of Southern rock, Americana roots and heartland pop. The Wild Feathers celebrate their decade together with Medium Rarities, an eleven-song collection of previously unreleased music spanning each incarnation of their still-evolving career. The Feathers themselves served as co-producers for much of the album.
April 27 | 7 p.m. | Virtual
What: The virtual discussion series Unmasked ignites timely conversations about critical issues. The program reviews recent voting policies that continue to escalate across 47 states in 2021, pivotal content in what feels like the eye of the storm. With the passing of Georgia’s most recent restrictive voting laws, including changes such as ID requirements and limitations to absentee voting, Unmasked invites scholars and political leaders to review patterns in policy-based discrimination in order to predict how these changes will affect American voters locally and beyond.
April 30 | 5 p.m. | Victoria Yards
What: To conjure the names of the N.C. jazz greats — Nina Simone, John Coltrane, Max Roach and more — is to acknowledge magic. In 2013, Mayor Anthony Foxx declared April 30th Jazz Appreciation Day in Charlotte in recognition of the impact jazz has had on our community. To cap off Jazz Appreciation Day and International Jazz Day, JazzArts Charlotte and Charlotte Center City Partners host an outdoor live music celebration featuring artists from across the Charlotte region. The musicians will rock the outdoor stage at Victoria Yards.
April 30-May 3 | Time Vary | The Underground
What: This immersive art show connects a diverse range of styles popular throughout Charlotte’s artistic community. The work is showcased through installations including a walkthrough floral experience, a wooden sculpture garden, a “Taxidermy Wall” with 20-30 hand-painted animal heads, a giant abstract UV reactive throne, and lots of other cool installations. Many of the artists — including Cheeks, Dammit Wesley, Fiberess, Fred Smith and Georgie Nakima — have long-standing personal ties to the Charlotte arts scene, with many of them being alumni of Art Hole, the commission-free gallery that closed in 2017.
May 1 | 12 p.m. | Common Market Oakwold
What: It seems like only yesterday that Common Market opened up a third uncommon store on Monroe Road. (The second Common Market being at the South End location launched in 2008.) The festive celebration will be filled with house-made tamales, sweets from Move That Dough Baking Co., ice cream from Two Scoops Creamery, funnel cakes, face painting, henna tattoos, live art, live music from Crystal Fountains and the New Creatures, and more. Events will be held outside with masks and social distancing required.
May 2 | 7:30 p.m | Virtual
What: Titanique’s story reveals what really happened to Jack and Rose on that fateful night, as told by Céline Dion. In a plot twist far more entertaining than Titanic director James Cameron’s three-and-a-half hour icy slog through the north Atlantic, Dion hijacks a Titanic Museum tour and recharts the course toward Titanic’s beloved moments. The evening features a powerhouse cast performing Céline’s iconic hits, including “My Heart Will Go On,” “It’s All Coming Back To Me Now,” and “All By Myself.” It’s way better than seeing Billy Zane’s career sink without a trace.
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