Foodies Unite with Alton Brown; Remembering the Igloo (CPs Sun., 2/23/2014)

1) In today’s world where molecular gastronomy, mixology, umami, and artisan have become the stuff of foodies’ dreams, celebrity chef Alton Brown brings it all to the table when his first ever live tour stops at the Benedum Center. The night of food, comedy, music (yes, really!), and lecture let you see food in a whole new light. A kitchen aficionado, Brown made a name for himself through various shows on Food Network including “Iron Chef America,” “Good Eats,” and “Feasting on Asphalt.” Combining culinary prowess, science, and a little flair, the TV chef shows audiences everywhere that we can find good food without sacrificing nutrition, even on the go. Brown feeds off of audience reaction and participation, and if you’re lucky, you might get to assist him on stage. 8 p.m. 237 Seventh St., Cultural District.

2) One of the best things Pittsburghers do is reminisce. The Steelers and Pirates of the ’70s, the back-to-back Stanley Cup wins of the early ’90s, numerous Rick Sebak specials on WQED—you name it, we love talking about it. Local photographer David Aschkenas gives us some talking points with his latest exhibition, Arena: Remembering the Igloo at 707 Penn Gallery. This installation features a wide array of photos from the end of the Civic Arena’s era. Aschkenas initially shot over 10,000 frames, and culled the best for us. The exhibit includes the final months of the arena’s operation as well as its long and bittersweet demolition. Featuring various angles, filters, and focal points, Aschkenas’s project shows the sentimentality in all good things inevitably coming to an end. Runs through March 2. 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday. 707 Penn Ave., Cultural District.

3) Whether you’re a bluegrass novice or expert, fans of fiddles and banjos can enjoy the sweet and sultry sounds of The Whiskey Gentry at Club Café. Husband and wife Jason Morrow and Lauren Staley are part of the summery-sounding septet that dig deep into Americana for some of the catchiest tunes this side of the Mississippi. Staley’s highly trained vocals are backed by equally impressive musicians who take a punk spin to traditional bluegrass. The result is an edgy take on an old favorite. Like adding avocado to chicken, The Whiskey Gentry brings a new flavor to the music table. Opening acts include Broke Stranded & Ugly along with Aaron “The Uke Slinger” Jones. 8 p.m. 56-58 S. 12th St., South Side.

4) Experimental rock invades the Altar Bar with Russian Circles. The band follows the “Stairway to Heaven” approach to songs, starting slow and almost delicate, then making way for a heavy middle before a short taper at the end. This style builds suspense and leaves audiences everywhere wanting more. A little jam band, a little metal, and a little folk rock all bundled into one, RC evokes various emotions in its songs from rage to regret, as demonstrated in “Memorial” among others. This isn’t your typical metal show, nor is it your typical Phish cover band. Leave your expectations at the door and marinate in the variety of beats and sounds. With special guests KEN mode and Inter Arma. 8 p.m. 1620 Penn Ave., Strip District.

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Jessica Dayhoff

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