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November 30, 2016

November 29, 2016: Your Arts and Culture Adventure Picks


This post is a part of a series of posts curating adventurous arts and culture experiences in Southeast Michigan. Sign up for email updates (choose “Arts & Culture Adventures” list).

adam desjardins

Mmm….Thanksgiving may be over, but it’s Christmas time! This year I’m hungry for change, and if you are too, I encourage you to donate to a local organization or a cause that you care about! For me, it’s the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota and Gleaner’s Community Food Bank in Detroit. As always, I encourage you to check out the arts happenings below because they’re affordable, enjoyable, and well, I just know you’ll love them.


Fun Home at the Fisher Theatre

After taking home a slew of accolades and audiences’ hearts while on Broadway, Fun Home is finally coming to a theater near you. Based on the memoir by graphic novelist Alison Bechdel, the plot follows Bechdel in three periods of her life: a present day, middle-aged cartoonist, a student at Oberlin College in Ohio, and a child growing up in rural Pennsylvania. The musical unravels Bechdel’s most personal memories from exploring her sexuality to her discovery of complex family secrets, taking audiences on a vulnerable, emotional, albeit fun trip down memory lane. Tickets start at $29 and the show runs from November 29 – December 11 in the architectural gem that is the Fisher Theatre. More.

Also check out their Facebook Page for even more events. 


noel-night44th Annual Noel Night in Midtown Detroit

This is one of my absolute favorite events in the world and it’s happening next week on December 3! I’m not big on holidays, but I have always loved Noel Night because year after year, it continues to be an event that is extremely accessible, artistically incredible, and completely free. Taking place from 5pm to 10pm, over 70 institutions in Midtown Detroit open their doors to the public to showcase 200+ performances, holiday markets, family craft activities, and so much more. My highlights from recent years have included the Detroit Party Marching Band outside the DIA, gospel legend Irma Thomas at First Congregational Church, and klezmer music at the Detroit Public Library. It’s free. Go. More. To like them on Facebook, check them out here.

Japanese Prints of Kabuki Theater at UMMA

kabuki-theaterMen in drag! Stardom! 18th + 19th century Japan! For centuries, Kabuki Theater has encapsulated all of the above and more, preserving a tradition of theatrics, drama, and Japanese history that still lives and breathes today. On display now through January 29 at the University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA), this exhibition of colorful woodblock prints will give viewers a look into the fandom, the fantasy, and the spectacle that captured the hearts of many from Japan and afar. Oh, and UMMA is always free. More.

Image: Utagawa Toyokuni III (Kunisada), Ichikawa Ichizō III as Kinryū Kumokichi, Edo period (1615-1867), 1857, color woodblock print or paper. University of Michigan Museum of Art, Gift of John Campbell, 2009/2.100

The Carr Center in Downtown Detroit

Consider this a grab bag, an artistic smorgasbord, because that is what the Carr Center is. After 7 years of creating a space for African and African-American cultural arts traditions in Downtown Detroit, the Carr Center is facing the possibility of being uprooted from their building as plans for a fancy hotel loom. That said, their artistic programming puts up a fight with two CD release concerts by local musicians in the coming weeks, a giant two-story art exhibition entitled “You Are Here” running until December 17, and a concert headlining jazz icon Dee Dee Bridgewater and jazz pianist (+ artistic director of the Carr Center) Geri Allen on December 2. Check out their website and go to show your support. More.



Thanks for giving this a read! Which events do you have on your calendar? Have any suggestions? Feel free to shoot me an email at, or comment below. I’d love to hear from you!

Photos courtesy of artists and performance spaces.

Adam Desjardins is a UMS Blogging Fellow. Learn more about the blogging fellows program.

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