"History is always happening" at Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site
7:30 p.m., Weekend Theater. $14-$18.
After gaining huge exposure on the big screen, “the demon barber of Fleet Street” returns to his original home, the stage. Let's keep our fingers crossed that the Weekend Theater knows its fake blood. Based on a character from a 19th-century British serial, “Sweeney Todd” tells the story of a barber, the titular Todd, who's exiled to Australia by a powerful judge who wants Todd's wife for his own. The story catches up with the barber post-exile. Deranged and hell-bent on revenge, Todd reopens shop, cutting more throats than hair. To hide his crimes, his sometimes lover Mrs. Lovett hides the remains in her meat pies, which quickly become the talk of London. The Weekend Theater bills this much-beloved Stephen Sondheim musical as an “intimate production,” which “shows us that sometimes melodrama is the most effective vehicle for capturing basic truths about the human condition.” Andy Hall directs and Lori Isner is musical director. The musical runs on weekends through June 22 with Sunday matinees at 2:30 p.m.
10 p.m., White Water Tavern. $8.
The world has (or had) the Van Halens, the Allmans and the Stinsons. Little Rock has the Kerbys. Those other famous rocker brothers have married TV stars and Cher, played at the Fillmore and trashed hotel rooms. The Kerbys, Josh and Kevin, played Vino's without their shirts one time. They also have rocker neck beards and menacing tattoos, respectively. With Kevin, known for his prowess as a singer/songwriter, kicking out chunky riffs on the ole electric guitar, Josh vamps and hollers out the lead vocals. They sound cowpunk-ish, but rawer and more well-rounded. Bryce, a refugee from the Contingencies, plays drums and the bassist is known almost exclusively as Slaughter House or sometimes just Slaughter. San Antokyo is celebrating the release of its debut album; the cover charge gets you a copy. Magic Hassle, an American Princes side project featuring David Slade, Matt Quin and Burt Taggart, opens the show along with barroom heroes Smoke Up Johnny, who after playing out prolifically and touring, briefly, with the Green Day alter ego, Foxboro Hot Tubs, probably won't be playing again for a long, long time. So make it count.
9 p.m., Downtown Music. $5.
Back in April, rapper Max Farrell, who performs as Maxx, hosted a concert at Vino's that packed in close to 300. Those are pretty staggering numbers for a local bill, particularly with a high school kid — an upper-middle-class white kid at that — headlining a hip-hop show in a club known lately for emo and punk. Farrell, who's since graduated from Central High (he'll attend Grinnell in the fall), is a strong talent. His rhymes are basic, but often skewed and smart enough to mask their simplicity. His flow, once fairly deliberate, has become dexterous. He's even producing with impressive results (see Rock Candy for a sample). But Farrell's success probably has more to do with his general charisma than his rap talent. He knows a lot of people, including, from his time in the inaugural session of the Hip-Hop School, a good number of the scene's top rappers. Emboldened by his initial success, he's seeking to broaden his reach. He was fairly ubiquitous at Riverfest, handing out flyers, and he's cut a promotional video for the show, which shows him catching air after taking a hill in his Chevy truck (craziness on the road leads to craziness on the stage seems to be the message). His line-up should help, too. Local favorite 607 joins North Rock, Bware, Rockst*r and long-off-the-radar Trapper the Rapper. Razormack.com hosts with g-force manning the turntables.
Congratulations Tara, beautifully written!