Maggie Rogers: Two Nights Only — The New York-based singer-songwriter burst into the cultural consciousness with her ethereal synth-folk single, “Alaska,” after astonishing Pharrell Williams with it during an NYU master class. When a clip of this moment—one featuring creative intimacy between a promising newcomer and a visibly moved, venerable icon of the industry—was posted online, it quickly went viral, garnering hundreds of thousands of views. While her roots are in folk music, Rogers’ debut EP, Now That the Light Is Fading, takes her music in a poppier, electronically infused direction while maintaining the wistful, understated charm of her early demos. Get to know her before she gets big.
Brooklyn Steel 8/16 – 8/17
Spend a Day with Demme — American cinema will never be the same without Jonathan Demme, one of the last great humanist filmmakers, who tragically passed away earlier this year. He leaves behind a wealth of work ranging from such Roger Corman-era B-movies as Crazy Mama (1975) to late-career, intimate character piece Ricki and the Flash (2016). It cannot be understated how much ground his filmography covers: massive mainstream successes such as the Academy Award-winning, socially conscious drama Philadelphia (1993) and the utterly iconic, serial killer thriller, Silence of the Lambs (1991), as well as his vibrant, formally innovative concert films such as the electrifying Talking Heads concert doc, Stop Making Sense (1984). Demme’s constantly evolving career took him—as well as audiences—all over the world, even if the story was set right here in his native New York, like Something Wild (1986), a free-spirited road movie with multicultural influences that zig-zags from NYC to Philadelphia and back again. That’s the ultimate power of his cinema: its unequivocal, universal love for individuals and its unending passion for telling their stories. BAMcinématek starts showing Stop Making Sense this weekend as part of their ongoing retrospective, “Jonathan Demme: Heart of Gold.”
BAMcinématek 8/16 – 8/24
More Than Meets the Eye — Are you a dinner-and-a-movie type who wants to kill two birds with one stone? Williamsburg’s own Videology Bar and Cinema has got you covered. Their food-and-drink-themed programming has been top-notch lately and this weekend is no different. They’re showing Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and hosting a midnight drink-along screening of high-octane actioner Speed (1994) while eager fans of David Lynch who can’t wait until Sunday for their fix with Twin Peaks can see Blue Velvet (1986) with a complimentary bottle of Pabst Blue Ribbon, all on Friday, August 18. That’s just a taste of their upcoming schedule, which also includes a screening of Wet Hot American Summer (2001), complete with S’mores, on Sunday, August 20.
Videology Bar and Cinema 8/18 & 8/20
An Alternative Remedy — If you’re looking for something a bit more in-tune with classical folk music, you can’t go wrong with the Grammy Award-winning Old Crow Medicine Show, a Nashville-based string band that brings a bluegrass twang to folk.
Brooklyn Steel 8/21
All the World Is Made of Pixie Dust — Critically acclaimed playwright Sarah Ruhl makes her long-awaited return to Playwrights Horizons with For Peter Pan on her 70th birthday, a surrealistic exploration of the mortal anxieties that come with getting older, arising when Neverland calls upon one of its Peter Pans, the recently bereaved Ann, some 50 years later, on her 70th birthday, for one last jaunt into childlike fantasia. Performances begin this Friday, August 18, and continue until October 1.