Comedy and theater are the headliners for this round of events around Dallas-Fort Worth, with multiple big productions taking place and big-name comics taking up residence in town.
If those aren't your style, we've also got a nostalgic concert in store and a screening of a true classic movie. Below are your best options for your precious free time Thursday through Sunday. Don't like what you see? Lucky for you, we have a much longer list of the city's best events.
Thursday, February 13
Dallas Summer Musicals presents Disney's The Little Mermaid
The Little Mermaid has been at the top of the list for Disney recently, with the re-release of an interactive version of the 1989 movie to theaters and the subsequent Blu-ray release. But this show from Dallas Summer Musicals blows that out of the water — literally — as Ariel, Sebastian and others take the stage at Music Hall at Fair Park. You'll still go under the sea, but without a drop of water on you. The musical runs through March 2.
Arts & Letters Live: Jonathan Lethem
We're just a few short weeks before the world premiere of Dallas Theater Center's Fortress of Solitude, so the Dallas Museum of Art welcomes author Jonathan Lethem, who wrote the book on which the musical is based. He is joined by members of the musical's team, who discuss adapting the novel to the stage. There is also a sneak preview of the show at the end of the night.
Friday, February 14
Dallas Opera presents Death and the Powers
After months of anticipation, Dallas Opera's Death and the Powers has finally arrived. The opera, which started on Wednesday and runs through Sunday at Winspear Opera House, is a technological marvel that tells the story of a billionaire who downloads his consciousness into a machine to try and live forever. There is also a sold-out free simulcast of the final performance at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, with stand-by tickets a possibility.
Kitchen Dog Theater presents The Motherfucker with the Hat
There are plenty of romantic options out there on Valentine's Day, but why not take in this Tony-nominated play, presented by Kitchen Dog Theater, in which a man's hat is the impetus for an uproarious quest for vengeance? Originally starring Chris Rock and Bobby Cannavale, it's an obviously foul-mouthed look at modern love, playing at McKinney Avenue Contemporary through March 15.
Saturday, February 15
Jeff Dunham in concert
It takes a special kind of ventriloquist to justify booking a gig at American Airlines Center, but Jeff Dunham is just that popular. This is actually his third time coming to the home of the Mavericks and Stars, so he obviously doesn't have any trouble putting butts in the seats. You can see why he's one of the highest-grossing comedians working today on Saturday night.
Maze featuring Frankie Beverly in concert with Bell Biv Devoe
Maze featuring Frankie Beverly is becoming a regular Dallas-area feature, as this marks the act's third headlining concert in Dallas in less than a year. Each time the soul legends have brought along a different well-known act as opener, and this time it's the late ’80s/early ’90s R&B trio Bell Biv Devoe. It's all playing at Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie.
Craig Ferguson in concert
As Jay Leno proved throughout his run on The Tonight Show, just because you host a late-night talk show doesn't mean you can't continue doing stand-up regularly. Craig Ferguson has taken that to heart, as he appears at McFarlin Auditorium on the SMU campus despite the fact that he has a new Late Late Show to host on the very same Friday night.
Sunday, February 16
Lone Star Film Society presents ArthouseFW: Sunrise
German director F.W. Murnau only lived until he was 42, but he left a giant cinematic legacy with films like Nosferatu and 1927's Sunrise, which won three Oscars, including Best Picture. The Lone Star Film Society pays tribute to Murnau by screening Sunrise as part of its ArthouseFW series at the Kimbell Art Museum.
Uptown Players presents HAM: The Show
This is a busy weekend for Uptown Players, as the group is starting its 2014 season with Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, the 2013 Tony winner for Best Play, on Friday and Saturday. The players are also presenting HAM: The Show, in which Sam Harris delivers a unique performance featuring selections from his book and songs he's done on Broadway and elsewhere. Both shows play at Kalita Humphreys Theater.