Area children are now officially back in school, and this weekend's slate of events has a decidedly adult feel. Among the offerings are a slew of concerts featuring big-name performers, new productions from two of Dallas' finer companies, and, just to throw the kids a bone, a marathon of movies from a galaxy far, far away.
Below are the 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, August 25
Slipknot in concert with Marilyn Manson
Following Slipknot lead singer Corey Taylor's unplanned surgery earlier this summer, their co-headlining concert with Marilyn Manson was moved from June 26 to August 25. For fans, it will have been worth the wait as Slipknot takes the stage at Gexa Energy Pavilion in support of 2014's .5: The Gray Chapter, while Manson is touring in support of his 2015 album, The Pale Emperor.
Dallas Theater Center presents Constellations
Dallas Theater Center has been on a well-deserved break after the stunning success of its last production, Dreamgirls. It's starting the 2016-2017 season with Constellations, the spellbinding, romantic journey between a theoretical physicist and a beekeeper that breaks the boundaries of the space-time continuum. The play runs through October 9 in the Studio Theatre at the Wyly Theatre.
AXS TV Concerts Hosted by Mark Cuban: Bret Michaels
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has hit the time machine with his concert series. He's brought us The Monkees, the Village People, and now Poison lead singer Bret Michaels. The singer, who's become almost as well-known for his reality TV appearances as he has for his music, plays all the hits at the Bomb Factory.
Friday, August 26
Diplo's Mad Decent Block Party
Now in its eighth year, DJ extraordinaire Diplo founded the Mad Decent Block Party as a way to showcase acts on his own album label, Mad Decent. This event, taking place outside Club Zouk, will be one to remember, as it features performances by Diplo, Kaskade, Tiësto, DJ Snake, Dillon Francis, Kesha, Flosstradamus, Zeds Dead, and many more.
Uptown Players presents The Toxic Avenger
You can always count on Uptown Players to come up with an outside-the-box idea for a play. The Toxic Avenger is a hot toxic love story and laugh-out-loud musical that has it all — an unlikely hero, his beautiful girlfriend, a corrupt New Jersey mayor, and two guys who play, well, everyone else. The love story with an environmental twist runs through September 11 at Kalita Humphreys Theater.
Saturday, August 27
Dallas Streetcar Community Block Party
The Bishop Arts District has been a hot spot for years, but parking has always been an issue. The arrival of the Dallas Streetcar line, which officially opens on August 29, promises to offer a nice alternative. This block party gives guests an exclusive sneak peek ride on the Dallas Streetcar extension from downtown Dallas into Bishop Arts.
Alamo Drafthouse presents Star Wars Marathon
Mea culpa: I jumped the gun previewing this event earlier this month. It’s been 39 years since audiences first saw the original Star Wars, but even after all those years, the Force is still strong with us all, especially with the Force awakening again last year. Alamo Drafthouse celebrates our love for the movie trilogy with rare digital screenings of the special edition versions of A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi at Majestic Theatre.
Brad Paisley in concert with Tyler Farr and Maddie & Tae
The Dallas-Fort Worth area is never at a loss for visits from country music stars, but Brad Paisley has taken his sweet time getting back to town, last appearing locally over three years ago. He'll close out the summer season at Gexa Energy Pavilion with this concert in support of his forthcoming album, Life Amplified, and he's joined by opening acts Tyler Farr and Maddie & Tae.
Coldplay in concert with Alessia Cara and Bishop Briggs
In their 16-year career, Coldplay has seemingly gone through massive swings of popularity, but whether or not they're considered "cool" by certain segments of society has yet to dampen their album sales. Their most recent album, A Head Full of Dreams, was a top 5 hit around the world. They'll showcase that and other songs at this giant concert at AT&T Stadium, which also features appearances by Alessia Cara and Bishop Briggs.
Sunday, August 28
Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals in concert
Ben Harper has had one of the more eclectic careers of any singer out there. With music that has included genres like blues, folk, soul, reggae, and rock, Harper has collaborated with multiple people to satisfy his musical whims. Along with his regular band, the Innocent Criminals, he's playing at South Side Ballroom in support of his latest album, Call It What It Is.