Sunday, Jan. 29
“Marking Their Place in History” exhibit of Cambridge Black Trailblazers (continued) from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Cambridge Main Library, 449 Broadway, Mid-Cambridge, and continuing through March 1. Free. Information is here.
“El Canto del Caballero” from 3 to 4 p.m. at the Somerville Museum, 1 Westwood Road, in the Spring Hill neighborhood. $20. Renaissance music from Spain performed by the Duo Maresienne – works by Cabezon, Vasquez, Selma, Ortiz, Guerrero and Trabaci, among others, from between 1530 and 1630. Information is here.
Monday, Jan. 30
Catherine Newman reads from “We All Want Impossible Things” at 7 p.m. at Porter Square Books, 25 White St., Porter Square. Free, but registration is suggested. One friend is dying of ovarian cancer in hospice and the other is really going through some stuff; readers are warned to be ready to laugh through their tears. The author will be in conversation with Joanna Rakoff, author of “My Salinger Year” and “A Fortunate Age.” Masks are required. Information is here.
“Renaissance” graduating student recital by Ni Dong at 8 p.m. at the Longy School of Music, 27 Garden St., Harvard Square. Free, with registration and donations of $10 or up welcomed. A program featuring works by Bach, Mozart, Chopin and Tan Dun. Information is here.
Tuesday, Jan. 31
“Make People Better” screening and discussion from 6 to 9 p.m. at The MIT Museum, 314 Main St., Kendall Square. Free. This documentary by Cody Sheehy looks at the work of Chinese scientist He Jiankui, who disappeared after developing the first designer babies. A panel discussion and Q&A follows with Samira Kiani, the film’s producer, and Antonio Regalado of the MIT Technology Review. Information is here.
Barrett Rollins reads from “In Sickness: A Memoir” at 7 p.m. at Harvard Book Store, 1256 Massachusetts Ave., Harvard Square. Free. The novel begins with a world-famous Harvard oncologist collapsing from long-hidden breast cancer and examines how even the most rational people can be taken down by irrational fears. “Tragic, moving, and wryly funny,” the store says. The author will be in conversation with Joan Wickersham, author of “The News from Spain.” Well-fitting masks are required. Information is here.
Wednesday, Feb. 1
Thursday, Feb. 2
“Woman in the Mirror” screening from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Cambridge Main Library, 449 Broadway, Mid-Cambridge. Free. Tatyana Bronstein’s new documentary film focuses on students struggling with the challenges of intense ballet training and on their teacher – Alexandra Koltun, a ballerina who defected from the Soviet Union because of antisemitism and lack of freedom and transitioned to the U.S. ballet stage, then into a teaching role. Information is here.
V (formerly Eve Ensler) reads from “Reckoning” at 7 p.m. at Harvard Book Store, 1256 Massachusetts Ave., Harvard Square. Free. The Tony award-winning author of “The Vagina Monologues” and “The Apology” uses prose, poetry, dreams, letters and essays drawn from her own journals to address the personal and political in a book Carl Bernstein calls “part memoir, part manifesto.” The author will be in conversation with Diane Paulus, artistic director of Harvard’s American Repertory Theater. Well-fitting masks are required. Information is here.
Tongue & Cheek: Original sex storytelling and history at 7:30 p.m. at Aeronaut Brewing, 14 Tyler St., near Union Square, Somerville. Free, with donations welcome at a 21-plus show. Discussion of taboos, queer history and sex culture in an event described as “a one-night stand with The Moth, Ted Talks and our neighbors the Smut Slam.” Information is here.
TrueAnon Presents: The Year of the Smile at 8:30 p.m. at The Sinclair, 52 Church St., Harvard Square (and continuing Friday). $30 for an 18-plus show. This investigative podcast from the dirtbag left, hosted by Liz Franczak, Brace Belden and Yung Chomsky, seems to be turning off the mics for this tour, telling attendees “It will not be recorded. You can never tell anyone what you see here. We are going to change your little life.” Chomsky opens the show with live music. Information is here.
Friday, Feb. 3
Teatime concert at noon at the Longy School of Music, 27 Garden St., Harvard Square. Free, with registration and donations of $10 or up welcomed. The school’s Chamber Music Department performs four pieces by composer Kenji Bunch for viola and piano. Information is here.
Cameron Lopez art reception from noon to 2 p.m. at the Somerville Public Library, 79 Highland Ave., on Central Hill. Free. The artist’s “The Imagination of Television Parodies and My Time Travel Plans,” cheery works inspired by ’90s pop culture, hangs at the [email protected] through February, starting with this reception. Information is here.
Poets Houman Harouni, Kythe Maryam Heller and David Rivard read at 7 p.m. at the Grolier Poetry Book Shop on 6 Plympton St., Harvard Square. $5. proof of vaccination at the door. Masks are required for the duration of the event. The readers are introduced by Ezra Fox. Information is here.
“Love and Rhythm” Valentine’s R&B concert from 7 to 10:30 p.m. at the Multicultural Arts Center, 41 Second St., East Cambridge. $10. Featured artists Eva Davenport, Karim, Kae Alayah, Aldra and Julian Mendoza are backed by Le Samourai, but also make way for a cypher in which the band plays cover songs and artists can sign up to sing or freestyle. With a photo booth and refreshments. Information is here.
“Reincarnation and Dance” with the Horszowski Trio at 8 p.m. at the Longy School of Music, 27 Garden St., Harvard Square. Free, with registration required and donations of $10 or up welcomed. The ensemble-in-residence performs Mendelssohn, Bach and J. Mills and has a Boston premiere of Kenji Bunch’s 2022 “Danceband” for piano trio and percussion, with Bunch as guest violist and Jared Soldiviero as guest percussionist. Information is here.
The Dead of Winter: A Night of Gothic Cabaret from 8 to 11 p.m. at The Rockwell, 255 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville. $20 for a 21-plus show. Entertainment with the musical Velvet Dirtmunchers, Annie and the Fur Trappers and Ms. Adventure Comedy. Information is here.
Square dance with The Ruth & Ben String Band from 10 p.m. to midnight at Lilypad, 1353 Cambridge St., Inman Square. $15. A late-night dance called by Grace Clements, no experience required. Information is here.
Saturday, Feb. 4
Friends of the Somerville Public Library winter book sale from 9:15 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Somerville Public Library, 79 Highland Ave., on Central Hill (and continuing Sunday). Free. Everything is $1. Information is here.
Après Cambridge from noon to 2 p.m. at The Picnic Grove at CX, 219 Jacobs St., North Point Free. An outdoor event with games, food and hot drinks at the Cambridge Crossing development. Look for an ice sculpture demo and photo opportunity, curling on a synthetic rink, hot cocoa and sliders from The Lexington, Belgian waffles from a food truck, Asian-inspired eats from Bon Me, the chance to create sock penguins and snow people at an arts and crafts station, games and a lounge. There’s a Lamplighter brewery “after party” until midnight that includes appropriately themed movies shown on a projector. Sponsored by the East Cambridge Business Association. Information is here.
The Fourth Wall Ensemble presents “Fruit Flies Like A Banana” at 7 p.m. at the the Arts at the Armory, 191 Highland Ave., Somerville. Back from a 50-show run in Edinburgh, Scotland, Fourth Wall presents a variety show in which Chopin is performed while riding hoverboards, Satie while hanging upside down and Joplin on plastic tubes – and so on. Each act is performed in an order selected by the audience for “a fast-paced thrill ride with surprises around every turn.” Information is here.
Somerville Songwriter Sessions at 7:30 p.m. at the Arts at the Armory Cafe, 191 Highland Ave., Somerville. There’s a $10 suggested donation. Singer-songwriters Rachel Marie, Jessye DeSilva and Owen Walsh get solo sets, followed by a round robin song swap. Information is here.
“Shelter” by Kathleen Supové at 8 p.m. at the Longy School of Music, 27 Garden St., Harvard Square. Free, with registration required and donations of $10 or up welcomed. The pianist takes on Randall Woolf’s “A Face in the Crowd” (2018), Mari Kimora’s “Reminiscendo” (2022) and much more, including her own brand-new “Glacier” and a bonus piece “based on graphic score provided by an audience member.” Information is here.
Night Flowers cabaret from 8 to 10 p.m. at The Rockwell, 255 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville. $25. Drag, burlesque and live music featuring Chanel the Angel, Dahlia Strack, Gia Greene, Jessica Dunaway, Kirbie Fullyloaded, Linda Marie Possa, Queen Kirlia and Rusty Hammer, hosted by Monstera Délicieux. Information is here.
Sunday, Feb. 5
The Hasty Pudding Theatricals’ “Cosmic Relief!” at 3 p.m. at Harvard University’s Farkas Hall, 12 Holyoke St., Harvard Square (and continuing through March 5). $47. These pun-filled musicals have been put on since 1844, long enough to include everyone from FDR to Rashida Jones in the organization. This one is about a disgraced FBI agent faking a moon landing amid a Communist panic – or something like that. Information is here.