Five things to do this weekend: March 29-30
Classical music with the Juilliard String Quartet (Saturday at Harvard University’s Farkas Hall Studio, 10-12 Holyoke St., Harvard Square; free) or you can play keyboards from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries (1 p.m. Saturday at The Green Room, 62 Bow St., Somerville. Free).
This weekend offers unique opportunities for lovers of classical music:
The Juilliard String Quartet – violinists Joseph Lin and Ronald Copes, cellist Joel Krosnick and violist Roger Tapping – whose precision and tonal character has earned accolades from audiences and critics throughout the world, conduct an open rehearsal performing Shulamit Ran’s String Quartet No. 2, “Vistas,” at 11 a.m. and a master class with Harvard undergraduate musicians at 2 p.m. No tickets or RSVPs are needed, but seating is first-come, first-served.
Union Square’s new Green Room art space happens to house three beautiful keyboard instruments: a double-manual harpsichord based on the popular 18th century Flemish style; a square piano by Broadwood & Sons, built in the early 19th century and painstakingly restored; and a modern grand piano from the height of Baldwin’s manufacturing from the middle of the 20th century. Visitors will not only hear the instruments played professionally, but even get to try them.
The Boston Underground Film Festival runs all day Saturday (starting at 11:30 a.m.) and Sunday (starting at 12:30 a.m.) at The Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle St., Harvard Square.
This annual event is underway, but the weekend holds quite a few highlights, starting with Saturday morning cartoons that includes favorites and obscurities from the ’60s through the ’80s, all with vintage commercials and PSAs. The curators promise “sci-fi, monsters, crime-solving, hot dogs, kid power, bubblegum bands and general nonsense.” The day goes on to include music videos, fictionalized eviscerations of academia and Hollywood and a documentary about Christianity in America.
Sunday starts with Michael J. Epstein & Sophia Cacciola’s ode to ’70s exploitation, slasher, and thriller flicks, “Ten” – your chance to see the first-time full-length filmmakers wrangle a big cast and equally big ideas, all springing from a short they made for a fake-trailer contest right here at The Brattle. It’s followed by curated shorts, two dramas and a part-animated sci-fi flick starring Robin Wright, Harvey Keitel, Jon Hamm and Paul Giamatti. The festival’s closing-night awards cap the weekend.
The full schedule is here.
This hourlong comedy from monologist David Mogolov grapples with politics, consumer culture, self-inflicted dental woes and a variety of personal failures. Finding himself dumbfounded by a question from a political pollster, Mogolov plunges into his past and the nation’s present, searching for a reason any one person’s opinion ought to matter. The further he goes, the less plausible it seems democracy has worked as well as it has. Critics and audiences loved the show’s New York City debut, with Stagebuddy.com saying it “has all the elements that make off-Broadway theater worth going to: great material, great direction and great performance.” The piece is written and performed by Mogolov and directed by Steve Kleinedler, with music by Ryan Walsh and Evan Sicuranza.
TEDxSomerville at 1 p.m. Sunday at Brooklyn Boulders, 12A Tyler St., Somerville.
TEDxSomerville is a daylong event celebrating the ideas, art, initiatives, inventions, community and other creativity that comes out of Somerville with presentations by speakers, artists and musicians eager to share their passions, talents and ideas. This year’s theme: “Movement.” Speakers include rock star and indie-funding exemplar Amanda Palmer. Check-in is at noon. Click here to sign up for access. The event site is here.
See some live music with Dead Rider (at 9 p.m. Sunday night at Middlesex Lounge, 315 Massachusetts Ave., near Central Square; $5) or … And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead (on a three-band bill starting at 9 p.m. Sunday at T.T. the Bear’s Place, 10 Brookline St., Central Square; $18 in advance or $20 day of show).
Chicago’s Dead Rider, featuring Todd Rittman of the noise rock band U.S. Maple, is touring to promote their self-produced album, “Chills on Glass” – which is a pretty good description of what Dead Rider does. It’s smooth and jagged at the same time, filled with electronic chills that cut right through you. The band headlines after Minibeast (devised by musician Peter Prescott of Mission Of Burma, Volcano Suns, Kustomized and Peer Group as an outlet for his interest in instrumental music) for the Treat Yo Self creative industry night.
… And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead is touring behinds its eighth studio album, “Lost Songs,” but plans to do songs from throughout its prog-rock career. “Lost Songs” was written via international collaboration, between Austin, Texas, and Phnom Penh, and the songs show a similar reach, with introspective tracks as well as some inspired by the Syrian civil war and Russian punk-rock activists Pussy Riot. The night starts at 9 p.m. with La Femme, a French band playing strange wave and new Motown, and continues with Midnight Masses, a psychedelic rock band of which Wired wrote: “If Billie Holiday were to sing with The Doors, the outcome might sound something like this.”