Another spring weekend in April brings another onslaught of interesting things to do. Choices include several high-profile concerts, a weekend-long celebration of art, and opera on a very, very big stage.
Don't forget that the Dallas International Film Festival continues through Sunday; check out our guide to help make your picks. 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, April 11
Dallas Summer Musicals presents Wicked
It's been an Oz kind of year so far, with Oz the Great and Powerful opening in theaters and now Wicked making a return trip to Dallas. The musical about the witches of Oz, now celebrating its 10th anniversary, has been to the Music Hall at Fair Park several times, and it never fails to disappoint. The production runs through April 27.
Bon Jovi in concert
Dallas fans get to see a slightly-less-than-whole Bon Jovi when the group stops by American Airlines Center Thursday night, as guitarist Richie Sambora unexpectedly left the tour on April 2. Although that's upsetting to some, the show must go on, and so it will with the rest of the band playing songs from their latest album, What About Now, and many classics.
Friday, April 12
2013 Dallas Art Fair
The Dallas Art Fair is a three-day festival suited to art enthusiasts and newcomers alike. Taking over the Fashion Industry Gallery Friday through Sunday, it's designed to give visitors a sense of what the art world is like today, featuring scads of contemporary paintings, sculpture, photography, video and installation art.
Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie presents Penn & Teller
There are some magicians who are all flash and no substance, but Penn & Teller, performing Friday at Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie, go above and beyond for their fans. Not only do they wow you with their illusions, but they also entertain by giving you a peek behind the curtain of how it all works. And somehow that only blows your mind even more.
Saturday, April 13
Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra presents Natalie Merchant
Natalie Merchant has had a diverse career, from her time as lead singer for 10,000 Maniacs to the different tones of her solo career. Although she hasn't put out a new album in three years, it's her latest album, 2010's Leave Your Sleep, that's featured in this collaboration with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. She puts on three shows Friday through Sunday at Bass Performance Hall.
Dallas Opera presents Turandot simulcast
Last year, the Dallas Opera lured 15,000 people to Cowboys Stadium to watch a simulcast of its production of The Magic Flute on Jerry World's gigantic HD scoreboard. The opera appears to be on its way toward breaking that record this year, as more than 20,000 people have already RSVPed to watch Turandot, along with the classic Bugs Bunny cartoon What's Opera, Doc?
Sunday, April 14
2013 Lone Star Park Opening Weekend
Local horse racing fans finally get to celebrate spring when Lone Star Park starts its racing schedule this weekend. There are different activities going on every day Thursday through Sunday, including concerts following racing on Friday and Saturday. Sunday is Family Fun Day, featuring pony rides, a petting zoo, bounce houses and more.
Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo in concert
It's not often that marriages can stand the test of time in the music world, let alone be as musically productive as the union between singer Pat Benatar and guitarist Neil Giraldo. Love may be a battlefield, but because Benatar's famous song came out soon after their wedding in 1982, love has been very good for this couple. They show off their strong bond in this outdoor concert at Annette Strauss Square.