12 things you should know about this week


Through April 15

Congressional Art Competition

Louisville Water Tower

3005 River Road

A fist-pump, high-five or plain, old-fashioned congratulations is in order for Assumption senior Mary-Kathryn Smith. Her painting was selected last week as the winner of John Yarmuth’s sixth annual Congressional Art Competition. The piece, titled “Fear At Night,” will be hung in the Capitol for a year. This year’s competition was the biggest so far, with more than 100 entries from high schools across the city. “This competition is about cultivating a love of art and encouraging young people to get involved in creative endeavors,” Yarmuth says. “I am proud to take Mary-Kathryn’s painting to Washington, where it will not only represent her accomplishments, but everything young artists in Louisville are capable of and the unique qualities of our city’s arts scene: history, promise, creativity, and engagement.” The winning art will be displayed at the Water Tower through Sunday. —Sara Havens


Wednesday, April 11

200 Years


2100 S. Preston St. • 635-9227

$5; 10 p.m.

When it reigns, it pours: Not only does this triple ripple bill feature Old Baby’s much anticipated record release celebration for their debut EP, Misunderstanding Human Behavior, it’s also the official Louisville debut of 200 Years and the return of the tour-strengthened State Champion, who recently made it in New York. Old Baby (featuring members of Young Widows, Sapat, Workers, and King’s Daughters & Sons) made it there, too — they can make it anywhere — so it’s up to you, Louisville, to buy thousands of copies of their disc, out now from Chicago’s Hawthorne Street, notifying the outside world that we’ve got another winner. 200 Years, the baby of Six Organs of Admittance guitar god Ben Chasny and Magik Markers vocalizer Elisa Ambrogio, also has a first record out, from Chicago’s Drag City, and will quickly lull you into excitement overload. —Peter Berkowitz


Thursday, April 12

Running of the Rodents

Spalding University

824 S. Fourth St.

Free; 10:15 a.m.

It’s not just a figure of speech; Spalding University has been hosting a literal rat race — christened “The most exciting two seconds in sports” by Trivial Pursuit in 1987 — for 40 years. The theme of this year’s Running of the Rodents is “Viva Rat Vegas,” so naturally the eight furry contestants were named accordingly: Their ranks include Lady Luck, Roulette, Burlesque and LibeRATce. The race was created by former Spalding professor Sister Julia Clare Fontaine as a stress reliever for students during finals week, and the festivities have since grown to include a penny war, a cereal-eating competition, a parade, balloon sculpting, a beanbag toss, and a Rat Hat competition for racing fans. Later in the day, a king and queen of the Rat Ball will be selected to reign over the entire student body. —Simon Isham


Thursday, April 12

All Shall Perish

Expo Five

2900 Seventh St. • 637-5218

$18 adv., $20 DOS; 5:30 p.m.

Deathcore works like a diet soda — it hits many of the right notes, but leaves a derivative taste incomparable to the originals. In spite of being a trite formula, many of its followers understand its true function: to be experienced live while moshing. Luckily, a few bands out there playing this subgenre do more than write breakdowns and stale, open-chord chugging. Progenitors All Shall Perish are still kicking with a technical assault that would level mountains, ripping every concertgoer a new asshole and a headache. They’ve been thriving, long before it boiled down to a “style” clichéd into carbon copy hell. Conducting From the Grave continues to mesmerize with flowing leads and melodic guitar shredding. With the sci-fi prog of The Contortionist, and crowd-drawing Carnifex, it’s a diverse bill guaranteed to bring a head-banging crowd to its knees. —Austin Weber


Friday, April 13

Edith Bingham & Linda Bruckheimer

Whiskey Row Lofts

131 W. Main St. • 871-4570

$5 suggested donation; 6-8:30 p.m.

Edith Bingham and Linda Bruckheimer are people who believe that heritage shapes the present and future. For this respect of the past, Preservation Kentucky is honoring their activism. The event will present the Excellence in Rural Preservation award to Linda Bruckheimer for restoration of her childhood home in Bloomfield, Ky., including an 1820 farmhouse and downtown buildings. The Excellence in Preservation Education award will go to Edith Bingham, a longtime fighter for Louisville’s historic buildings, including Whiskey Row. There’s also an exhibition with art by Kelly Cook, Andy Cook, Bill Macintire, Sandie Griffith, Kim Torres and Mike Stauss (a portion of sales will go to Preservation Kentucky). Music is by The River Sirens, Company Sons, and Lead-Based Pickers, with food supplied by Doc Crow’s. —Jo Anne Triplett


April 13-29

‘A Southern Exposure’

Bunbury Theatre at the Henry Clay

604 S. Third St. • 585-5306

$15-$21; 7:30 p.m., 2 p.m. Sundays (no show April 21)

Mark Twain said that Kentucky is 20 years behind. I’m not so sure about that — I think Louisville has made it to at least 2004 by now, but I don’t know about the rest of the state, which can sometimes look and feel like a totally different world in certain parts. Bunbury’s latest production, a romantic comedy and winner of the Barter Theatre’s Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights, is set in “present-day” Kentucky, whatever era that is. Callie Belle Hurt has fallen in love and is moving to the big city — not even Louisville, but New York (gasp). This shakes up her eccentric but traditional family, which faces some tribulation while she’s gone. But in this charming Southern piece, love triumphs over distance and differences. —Jane Mattingly


Saturday, April 14

‘Monkey Mocha Fantastique’

Sunergos Coffee

306 W. Woodlawn Ave.

Free; 6:30 p.m.

You have been honing your craft in obscurity, waiting for just the right moment to unfurl your mettle on a grand stage. Your nerves: fireproof. Your hand and eye remain steady, even in the heat of battle. You’ve toiled in the trenches, but now know you have what it takes to lock horns with the battlefield’s deftest competitors. You are Louisville’s most fierce latte artist! You will claim your crown at the Sunergos Coffee Arena Saturday as non-combatants, er, non-baristas, congregate for the premiere of “Monkey Mocha Fantastique,” a 15-minute artwork of the digital variety with moving pictures and audio. Local filmmaker William Wallace will be on hand with cast and crew to discuss their production and, undoubtedly, the awesomeness of coffee. —J. Christian Walsh


Saturday, April 14

Sam McPheeters

The Green Haus

2227 S. Preston St. • 636-4141

Free; 7:30 p.m.

Today’s young punkers do realize that, when they get older, they will probably write books and/or form new bands inspired by their sudden, newly discovered love of outlaw country — right? Sam McPheeters made a big name for himself with his bands Born Against, Men’s Recovery Project, and Wrangler Brutes, and through his label, Vermiform. Now he’s making his name as a prose writer: writing essays and columns for Vice, The Village Voice and other non-lamestream outlets; founding his upcoming literary magazine, Exploded View; and authoring his first novel, “The Loom of Ruin,” about “an angry, angry, angry man.” He’ll read from and discuss the novel along with Kentucky proud Brett Eugene Ralph, the punk singer turned poet and country-rock singer, and younger scribe Jake Snider, a rising talent. And while you’re here, enjoy some succulents and well-loved couches. —Peter Berkowitz


Sunday, April 15

Rock the Night for Youth

Stevie Ray’s Blues Bar

230 E. Main St.

$10; 3 p.m.

The obstacles of adolescence — peer pressure, unrequited crushes, chemistry homework, bad skin — can make being a teenager seem unbearable. For LGBT youth, this tumultuous time is made even more difficult when bullies belittle them for being “different.” That’s where Louisville Youth Group comes in, providing a welcoming space for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teens to socialize and learn they are not alone. On Sunday, you can rock out to live music all day long to raise money for this grassroots organization. LEO’s Bar Belle is hosting the event, which features Robbie Bartlett, She Groove, Huh Robots, Troubadours of Divine Bliss, and The Blue Umbrellas. A few local food trucks will be serving up tasty fare out front to keep the masses well fed as they imbibe for a good cause. —Sarah Kelley


Monday, April 16

Author Erik Larson

Kentucky Center

501 W. Main St. • 584-7777

$20; 5 p.m.

Author Erik Larson has secured a stellar reputation in a unique niche: He writes nonfiction books that saturate the reader in a historical time and place just as remarkable things go horribly wrong. The bestseller lists took serious note of Larson with “The Devil in the White City,” which recounts both the enduring marvels of a late-19th century World’s Fair and the psychopathically charged murder campaign simultaneously blighting Chicago. Larson’s eye for juxtaposition and shiver-inducing irony was more recently turned toward the family of the U.S. ambassador to Germany while the Nazis gathered power, resulting in “In The Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and An American Family in Hitler’s Berlin.” As part of the Kentucky Author Series, Larson will be interviewed by Robert Siegel of NPR’s “All Things Considered.” T.E. Lyons


Monday, April 16

The Cave Singers


2100 S. Preston St. • 635-9227

$12; 9 p.m.

It was about this time last year that the Cave Singers first took the stage at Zanzabar. The Seattle-based indie folk-rock band received a warm reception from the crowd, which singer Pete Quirk called one of the best he’d ever played in front of. They haven’t got a new album out this time around, but you can think of it as just a break for you to catch up on your old favorites. There will be no deficit of new tunes, though, because their openers and stage-mates, Louisville electro-folk band Whistle Peak, are so pumped about the recent release of their album Half Asleep Upon Echo Falls. Though both groups assert that they’re “indie pop bands” who claim natural scenery as an inspiration, their interpretations vary vastly. —Simon Isham


April 17-18

New Voices Young Playwrights Festival

Actors Theatre

316 W. Main St. • 584-1205

Free; 7 p.m.

For anyone who watches reality-based television, 10 minutes is a lot of time to get something done. The young playwrights from schools across Louisville get 10 minutes to entertain play enthusiasts. Actors Theatre hosts a festival to exhibit the talent brewing at duPont Manual, Dunbar, St. Francis, South Oldham and Sayre high schools. Onlookers will enjoy plays that “feature an eclectic mix of topical themes set against both familiar and unexpected backdrops,” says Melinda Beck of Actors Theatre. Topics range from assassins who must choose between their love for one another and their love of killing, a variety show gone horribly awry when the recovery efforts become the feature, and the futuristic and touching story of love and loss when a young man must part with what he holds dear. For eight talented artists out of more than 400 submissions, this is 10 minutes of fame. —Allison Ray