Cambridge Day: A week of events in Cambridge, Somerville: ‘La Sonnambula,’ robot show, improv fest

By Marc Levy
Sunday, August 18, 2019

Monday

Massmouth Summer Story Showcase from 7 to 9 p.m. at Club Passim, 47 Palmer St., Harvard Square. General admission is $12. Five-minute, true short stories from 10 names drawn at random from a box, with five volunteer judges looking at how well each story is told, how well it is constructed, how well the story explores the theme and how well it honors the time limit. Information is here.

Multicultural glow-in-the-dark dance from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Vox Pop, 431 Artisan Way, Assembly Square, Somerville. Free. Teen Empowerment and Somerville Media Center bring not just glow in the dark dancing, but youth organizers’ dance routines and free snacks, all in celebration of culture and diversity. Information is here.

Tuesday

“Dyanna” robot art exhibition from 6 to 8 p.m. in the courtyard of Somernova at 12 Tyler St., in Ward Two, Somerville, between Porter and Union squares. Free, but register here. Skunkadelia, makers of steel sculptures of friendly robots, unveils the life-size Dyanna, a “heroic, powerful female icon,” and other surprises. Information is here.

Bellini’s “La Sonnambula” from 7:30 to 10 p.m. (and repeating Thursday, Saturday and Sunday) at Auspicious Phoenix Productions, 64 Joy St., Inner Belt, Somerville. General admission is $40, with $20 low-income and $80 real-cost tickets also available. This immersive opera delves into the supernatural mystery and romance surrounding a small, sleepy town, directed by Dan Rogers with a chamber orchestra conducted by Ismael Sandoval. Information is here

Wednesday

Recess in Junglenova from 12:30 to 1: 30 p.m. (and repeating Wednesdays) in the courtyard of Somernova at 12 Tyler St., in Ward Two, Somerville, between Porter and Union squares. Free, but register here. This Union Square-area innovation district invites people to bring lunch and have recess – with tetherball, four square and other games. Information is here.

Olivia Gatwood’s “Life of the Party” spoken word from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at The Harvard Coop, 1400 Massachusetts Ave., Harvard Square. Free, but register here. Gatwood, a feminist poet with a large online fanbase, weaves together her own coming of age with an investigation into our culture’s romanticization of violence against women, deconstructing the dark side of girlhood, violence against women and society’s obsession with true crime. A conversation, Q&A and signing accompanies the reading. Information is here.

Zeke Russell at the Boston Poetry Slam, from 7:15 p.m. to midnight at The Cantab Lounge, 738 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. There’s a $3 cover for this 18-plus show. Russell, a member of the current Boston Poetry Slam Team, is featured after two hours of open mic starting at 8 p.m. Information is here.

GrownUp StoryTime: “Sultry-Sappy Summer” from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Remnant Brewing, 2 Bow St., Union Square, Somerville. Tickets are $5 (with fees, $6.94). Whether you’ve been having a sappy summer or a sultry summer, come tell the story. Information is here.

Thursday

Outdoor Movie Night: “Frozen” from 6 to 10 p.m. at CambridgeSide, 100 CambridgeSide Place, East Cambridge. Free. The Disney smash – with free popcorn from the East Cambridge Business Association – is at 8 p.m., after family games and treats at 6 p.m.; at 7 p.m. Mad Science does its thing, putting on a fun, interactive demonstration of the principles of “Air and Ice.” Information is here.

The “Buy Me, Boston” Video Loft from 7:30 to 9 p.m. at The Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle St., Harvard Square. Tickets are $12. Brian Coleman, author of “Buy Me, Boston,” shares video nuggets gathered during archival digs around the region, ranging from performance and studio music videos by Boston artists to local access and talk show oddities and long-forgotten local television commercials – this time focusing on live music performances from the 1960s to the 1990s, including exclusive clips from the Billy Ruane “Road To Ruane” Video Archives and the Massachusetts Rock Against Racism Archives at UMass Boston. Information is here.

“Call Mr. Robeson: A Life, With Songs” from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Multicultural Arts Center, 41 Second St., East Cambridge. Free, but register here. Actor, singer and civil rights champion Robeson was eventually branded a traitor for his calls for social justice, and this theater piece written and performed by Tayo Aluko (with live piano accompaniment by Timothy Steele) follows him to the breaking point, summoned to appear before the 1950s House Un-American Activities Committee. Information is here.

Bellini’s “La Sonnambula” from 7:30 to 10 p.m. (and repeating Saturday and Sunday) at Auspicious Phoenix Productions, 64 Joy St., Inner Belt, Somerville. General admission is $40, with $20 low-income and $80 real-cost tickets also available. Information is here

Friday

Star Bright Books Back-To-School Warehouse Sale from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. (and repeating Saturday) at Star Bright Books, 13 Landsdowne St., Cambridgeport. Free to enter. A two-day warehouse sale takes half off every book in the catalog of this board, picture and chapter books publisher open since 1994 and publishing books in 26 languages including Spanish, English, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Arabic, Portuguese, Nepali, French, Amharic, Bengali and Hindi. Information is here.

“Cherry Docs” from 7 to 8:30 p.m. (and repeating Saturday, Sunday and Thursday) at The Rockwell, 255 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville. Tickets are $26 (with fees, $29.21). A Jewish lawyer defends a young Neo-Nazi on trial for murder in a play by David Gow and directed by Evan Turissini from Acropolis Stage. Information is here.

“The Cask of Amontillado” from 7 to 9 p.m. at Vox Pop, 431 Artisan Way, Assembly Square, Somerville. Free, but register here. The Post-Meridian Players reprise Mare Freed’s adaptation of the chilling “The Cask of Amontillado,” which transplants Edgar Allan Poe’s story to the Roaring ’20s. Directed by Naomi Ibasitas. Information is here.

Cervena Barva Press Reading Series from 7 to 9 p.m. at The Center for Arts at the Armory, 191 Highland Ave., Somerville. Admission is $5 and includes refreshments. Readings from Mary Bonina, DeWitt Henry, David Gullette and Joseph Featherstone. Information is here.

Union Improv Fest Kickoff from 7 to 10 p.m. at Lilypad, 1353 Cambridge St., Inman Square. Tickets are $5 (with fees, $6.94). Sketch and improv comedy in the run-up to the next day’s marathon. Information is here.

Saturday

Union Improv Festival from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Sunday at Once Somerville, 156 Highland Ave. All-day passes are $20 (with fees, $22.85) and primetime passes are $15 (with fees, $17.55) for shows starting in the evening. Whoa. This second annual marathon offers a lot of long-form improv comedy, with teams from Boston, Los Angeles, New York and Chicago. Information is here.

Portrait of an Artist & Poet from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at The Center for Arts at the Armory, 191 Highland Ave., Somerville. Admission is $5 and includes post-event refreshments. The Cervena Barva Press Studio presents Jenny Grassl and Kelly DuMar, reading their poetry and talking about their paintings, with an exhibit of some of their work. Information is here.

Dances of the Spirit: The Works of Isadora Duncan from 3 to 5 p.m. at Longfellow Park, 175 Mount Auburn St., West Cambridge near Harvard Square. Free. Expect original dance inspired by Daniel Chester French, sculptor of “Mourning Victory,” alongside repertoire by Isadora Duncan, French’s friend. A workshop on Duncan’s technique follows. Information is here.

Something To Go To from 7 to 10 p.m. at CultureHouse, 500 Kendall St., Kendall Square. Free. The popup hangout offers an excuse to get out of that thing you don’t want to go to – by saying you have “Something To Go To,” even if that thing is really just hanging out. Games, snacks and drinks provided, and today there’s the game that must not be named: giant cornhole. Information is here.

Movies in the Park: “Dumbo” from 7 to 10 p.m. at Sylvester Baxter Riverfront Park, 300 Grand Union Blvd., Assembly Square. Free. Bring a blanket, lawn chair and picnic for this series from WBZ NewsRadio 1030 and the state Department of Conservation and Recreation. This is 2019’s computer graphics-aided reimagining of the classic, directed by Tim Burton with Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton and Danny DeVito – and special effects so good you will believe an elephant can fly. Information is here.

Midnight Special late-night movie in 35mm: “Cabin Boy” at midnight at Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square. Tickets are $12. The summer’s final midnight flick is a willfully dumb Chris Elliott alt-comedy and ironic epic from 1994 about a fancy lad who goes to sea – finally getting respect (kind of) a quarter-century after befuddling America. Information is here.

Star Bright Books Back-To-School Warehouse Sale from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Star Bright Books, 13 Landsdowne St., Cambridgeport. Free to enter. Information is here.

“Cherry Docs” from 3 to 4:30 p.m. and 7 to 8:30 p.m. (and repeating Sunday and Thursday) at The Rockwell, 255 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville. Tickets are $26 (with fees, $29.21). Information is here.

Bellini’s “La Sonnambula” from 7:30 to 10 p.m. (and repeating Sunday) at Auspicious Phoenix Productions, 64 Joy St., Inner Belt, Somerville. General admission is $40, with $20 low-income and $80 real-cost tickets also available. Information is here

Sunday

Founders Day from noon to 4 p.m. at Longfellow Park, 175 Mount Auburn St., West Cambridge near Harvard Square. Free. Celebrate the 103rd birthday of the National Park Service with family-friendly crafts and activities and a talk with President Theodore Roosevelt for the final hour. Information is here.

Pingpong Tournament from 2 to 5 p.m. (and repeating on future Sundays) at CultureHouse, 500 Kendall St., Kendall Square. Free. Win honor, glory and maybe a prize in this weekly tournament at the pop-up “living room for the community” or “indoor public park.” Information is  (and there’s a full schedule of events here, including trivia and game nights, film screenings and more).

Bellini’s “La Sonnambula” from 2 to 4:30 p.m. at Auspicious Phoenix Productions, 64 Joy St., Inner Belt, Somerville. General admission is $40, with $20 low-income and $80 real-cost tickets also available. Information is here

“Cherry Docs” from 3 to 4:30 p.m. (and repeating Thursday) at The Rockwell, 255 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville. Tickets are $26 (with fees, $29.21). Information is here.