Weekend Event Planner

Meyerson 25th anniversary and Aretha Franklin top best weekend events in Dallas

Meyerson 25th anniversary and Aretha Franklin top best weekend events

Aretha Franklin
Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin takes the stage at Winspear Opera House on September 6 for CitySquare's annual fundraiser, A Night to Remember. Photo courtesy of CitySquare
Meyerson Symphony Center
Meyerson Symphony Center, which opened in 1989, celebrates its 25th anniversary with a week full of events starting on September 6. Photo by Andreas Praefcke
Michael Urie in Buyer & Cellar
Michael Urie plays multiple characters in Buyer & Cellar, at Dallas City Performance Hall through September 6.  Photo courtesy of AT&T Performing Arts Center
Thirty Seconds to Mars
Thirty Seconds to Mars, featuring Oscar winner Jared Leto as lead singer, joins Linkin Park at Gexa Energy Pavilion on September 6. Photo courtesy of Thirty Seconds to Mars
Drake Toyota Center 2013
Drake tries to prove he's a better rapper than Lil Wayne when the two Young Money artists face off at Gexa Energy Pavilion on September 7. Photo by Chinh Phan
Aretha Franklin
Meyerson Symphony Center
Michael Urie in Buyer & Cellar
Thirty Seconds to Mars
Drake Toyota Center 2013

September is when things start heating up again in the Dallas Arts District, so it's only natural that's the focus of this week's roundup. Five of the 11 featured events take place within its boundaries, with subjects including animals, history, theater, a milestone celebration and the Queen of Soul.

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, September 4

Perot Museum presents First Thursday Late Night: Jeff Corwin
The Perot Museum of Nature and Science has a lot on its plate over the next year, and it kicks things off with the premiere of Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland, featuring a special appearance by conservationist Jeff Corwin, who narrates the film. The evening also includes special activities themed around the Galapagos Islands.

An Evening with Ken Burns and The Roosevelts: An Intimate History
Director Ken Burns is one of the most acclaimed documentary filmmakers in the world, having made films on, among other things, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Civil War, Frank Lloyd Wright and baseball. He focuses his camera on the long and storied history of the Roosevelt family in his latest film, which he talks about in this special event at Winspear Opera House.

Off Broadway on Flora Series: Buyer & Cellar
The AT&T Performing Arts Center is kicking off its new Off Broadway on Flora series with Buyer & Cellar, a one-man show starring former Ugly Betty star — and Plano's own — Michael Urie. Taking place in the basement mall at Barbra Streisand's Malibu estate, Urie plays multiple characters, including Babs herself. The show runs at Dallas City Performance Hall through Saturday.

Friday, September 5

Dallas Summer Musicals presents Nice Work If You Can Get It
George and Ira Gershwin were responsible for some of the most iconic songs ever to be sung on Broadway, including "But Not For Me," "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off," "I've Got a Crush on You" and "Someone to Watch Over Me." Those and more are showcased in this musical that seems old but is actually almost brand new, having premiered in 2012. Dallas Summer Musicals presents the show at the Music Hall at Fair Park through September 14.

ArtCon(cert): Telegraph Canyon with Jacob Furr
Art Conspiracy, a nonprofit organization that brings local artists and musicians together to raise money and promote awareness of creative causes, puts on the second concert in an ongoing series at Kettle Art Gallery. Fort Worth is well-represented, with performances by folk rockers Telegraph Canyon and singer-songwriter Jacob Furr.

Saturday, September 6

Meyerson Symphony Center 25th Anniversary Celebration
Twenty-five years ago, the Dallas Arts District started to take shape with the opening of the Meyerson Symphony Center. The Dallas Symphony Orchestra and others pay tribute to the building with a week full of events. Saturday features a parade down Flora Street followed by family friendly activities and performances. There are also special performances nightly next Monday through Thursday, not to mention the season opening Pops concert, Let's Dance, taking place Friday through Sunday.

The Most Good Music Festival
Anytime you can get quality entertainment while doing something good for your fellow man, it's a win-win. That's the case with the Most Good Music Festival taking place at Panther Island Pavilion in Fort Worth. Texas country singers Stoney LaRue, Jack Ingram and others take the stage, with proceeds benefiting the Salvation Army and its goal of providing 1 million meals to hungry people around Dallas-Fort Worth.

Linkin Park in concert with Thirty Seconds to Mars and AFI
It's not often a concert features bands that have won both Grammys and Oscars, but that's the case when Linkin Park is joined by the Jared Leto-led Thirty Seconds to Mars at Gexa Energy Pavilion. Linkin Park is touring in support of the band's 2014 album, The Hunting Party, while Thirty Seconds to Mars' latest, Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams, came out in 2013. They are joined by opening act AFI.

CitySquare presents A Night to Remember featuring Aretha Franklin
The annual A Night to Remember, a fundraiser for anti-poverty organization CitySquare, always seems to live up to its name when it comes to entertainment. This year, Aretha Franklin joins a list that has included B.B. King, Steve Martin, Clint Black, Patti LaBelle, Bill Cosby, Jay Leno and Lyle Lovett. The Queen of Soul performs at Winspear Opera House.

Sunday, September 7

2014 Red Bull Air Race
Red Bull has some kind of craziness going on around the world throughout the year, and now it's bringing back the Air Race after a three-year hiatus. The event, taking place at Texas Motor Speedway, features airplanes flying through specially designed aerial racetracks with unique inflatable pylons. It's a combination of high speed, low altitude and extreme maneuverability that will surely thrill any racing fan.

Drake vs. Lil Wayne Tour
Rap battles usually take place in seedy underground clubs, but a high-profile one is on display at Gexa Energy Pavilion when superstars Drake and Lil Wayne face off. It's all in good fun, of course, as the two Young Money artists show off the skills that made them popular. You can also expect surprise cameos from other rappers to help each of them in his cause.