Choreographer Camille A. Brown brings her “Black Girl: Linguistic Play” to N.C. State University’s Stewart Theatre at 8 p.m. on Feb. 25. Brown and her dancers perform double dutch, steppin’ and tap, and use call-and-response games to evoke childhood memories and look at the empowerment of black women. The New York Times reviewer said it was “by turns, clever and tender,” and of the opening dance by Brown and Catherine Foster said: “the pair sync up for sneaker-stomping duets that are so elastic, so intricate that the sense of cadence and rhythm is as visual an experience as it is an aural one.” Tickets start at $25. Call 919-515-1100 or live.arts.ncsu.edu/.
Chris Rock is starting his first full-scale live comedy world tour in nine years this month at the Durham Performing Arts Center – an event so popular a third show has been added. At press time there still are a few tickets left for what he’s calling the “Total Blackout Tour.” The title comes from Rock’s pre-Oscar tweet last year promising a #blackout at the Academy Awards he was hosting. In announcing the tour in December, Rock promised all new material and said the shows would be filmed for one of two stand-up specials he’ll do for Netflix. The shows start at 8 p.m., Monday-Wednesday, Feb. 13-15. Ticket prices start at $49.50, plus fees and taxes, though at last check many of the individual seats left were $125. www.dpacnc.com.
The Carolina Jazz Festival from Feb. 15 to 18 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has been going on for 40 years under the innovative direction of its founder and director Jim Ketch, a musician and music professor. This year’s headliner is Marcus Roberts and the Modern Jazz Generation who performs at 8 p.m. Feb. 17 in Memorial Hall. Roberts career got a boost when he was performing with the Wynton Marsalis and Jazz at Lincoln Center bands – a success that continued when he went out on his own with a trio and then as a classical soloist. The festival will feature additional performances and workshops by the UNC Jazz Band, UNC Faculty Jazz Ensemble, UNC Jazz combos, Charanga Carolina and Dayna Stephens, a tenor saxophonist and composer who is the artist-in-residence. In conjunction, the campus also hosts the North Carolina Regional Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Festival. That’s from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in Hill Hall and the Kenan Music Building. Many of the events are free. Get the full line up at http://music.unc.edu/jazzfest/. For tickets call 919-843-3333.
Tanya Barfield was nominated for an Emmy for her work on the FX show “The Americans,” but she is first and foremost a playwright, winning critics awards and being nominated for a Pulitzer. This month, Manbites Dog Theatre takes on her play “Bright Half Life,” which looks at the courtship, marriage and divorce of two women over four decades. The show runs from Feb. 16 to March 4 at the theater, 703 Foster St. Durham. Tickets for the preview on Feb. 16 are $5; weeknight shows are $12 and weekend shows are $20. Discounts available for students, the military and senior citizens. Tickets can be purchased at 919-682-3343. For more info go to manbitesdogtheater.org.
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You can celebrate Valentine’s Day a few days late (just be sure to give the tickets on the 14th) by taking your beloved to see the N.C. Symphony’s pops program Friday and Saturday, Feb. 17-18. Billed as “Romantic Nights,” the symphony will perform love songs from Broadway musicals and films including “Phantom of the Opera,” “West Side Story” and “Gone with the Wind.” Stuart Chafetz conducts. Both shows are at 8 p.m. at Meymandi Concert Hall, Duke Energy Center, 2 E South St. in downtown Raleigh. Tickets start at $30. Details: http://ncsymphony.org