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Delirium and the Blues

Cirque du Soleil swings by Alltel on Thursday.


BLUESMAN: Harris, in Eureka.
  • BLUESMAN: Harris, in Eureka.
Cirque du Soleil swings by Alltel on Thursday.

In recent years, Canada’s Cirque du Soleil has taken its famously grandiose large-scale productions on the road to smaller venues like concert halls and arenas to perform for 12,000 to 25,000 people. Thursday, Alltel will host Cirque’s “Delirium,” a concert featuring dance, theater and multimedia. In “Delirium,” music will center the show. Twenty melodies from various Cirque shows have been given lyrics and remixed with a pulsating tribal beat. The high-tech, high-energy spectacle should include big acrobatics and over-the-top costuming and set design.
8 p.m. Thursday, May 31. Alltel Arena. $37.75-$108.75.

A strong lineup anchors the annual festival, which runs Thursday through Saturday.

The 20th annual Eureka Springs Blues Festival allies dozens of disparate acts for a weekend showcase of the blues. Corey Harris, who joined Billy Bragg and Wilco on the acclaimed “Mermaid Avenue” album of unfinished Woody Guthrie songs, has spent much of his career exploring the connections between the blues and other genres, including reggae, hip-hop, New Orleans funk and especially African music. Elvin Bishop first gained fame as a core member in the Paul Butterfield Blues Band in the early 1960s. Since then, he’s toured relentlessly, establishing himself as one of the great blues guitarists. Blues-rock heroes the North Mississippi Allstars and internationally acclaimed slide guitarist Roy Rogers will also be on the bill, along with Clay McClinton, Bernard Allison, Randy Beach, Eric Lindell, LZ Love, the Cate Brothers, Jimmy Thackery, Reba Russell and more. Find details at www.eurekaspringsbluesfestival.com.

Thursday, May 31 through Saturday, June 2. Eureka Springs. Various ticket packages and single show rates.

The ’80s cover band plays the RiverTop Party on Friday.

Fayetteville’s premier miners of recent nostalgia, Molten Lava, offer a list of influences, and presumably, cover fodder, on their mySpace page. It’s largely what you’d expect — INXS, Jesus Jones, the Police, Wham!, Phil Collins. But also mixed in are obscurantists (and former Goths) Love and Rockets and pop cult-heroes XTC. The band’s show on the roof of the Peabody will be a chance to see how deep the live jukebox really goes. For more information, call 399-8059 or visit www.rivertopparty.com.
8 p.m. Friday, June 1. The Peabody Hotel. $5.

Annual walk for AIDS happens on Saturday in downtown Little Rock.

The Arkansas AIDS Foundation (AAF) will host its fifth annual AIDS Walk Saturday at the Clinton Library. This event will include activities for children and adults and a balloon release in memory of individuals who have lived, are living, and will live with HIV/AIDS. After the balloon release, the Celebration of Life Walk will start with a health fair, free food and fun to follow.
10 a.m. Saturday, June 1. Clinton Library. Free.

Polka kings return to Sticky Fingerz for a show on Friday.
Brave Combo front man Carl Finch has said before that the impetus behind his band is the drive to “break down people’s perceptions about what’s cool to like in music.” To that end, Brave Combo has pushed, for 27 years now, polka, perhaps the world’s most patently uncool music. For their efforts, the band has played David Byrne’s wedding, recorded with Tiny Tim, won a Grammy and, maybe most prestigiously, appeared on an episode of “The Simpsons.” Their live shows are legendary. Expect polka-ized versions of songs like “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” and flourishes from genres as far-flung as surf rock and zydeco. And don’t be surprised if you get inspired to dance.
10 p.m. Friday, June 1. Sticky Fingerz. $7.

Pinnacle Mountain State Park plays host to a music festival on Friday and Saturday.

If Riverfest has you juiced for more live music, but jaded from the crowds, the new Pinnacle of Music Festival at the West Little Rock park might be the antidote. Parking costs $5; beyond that, with a blanket, a lawn chair, and maybe a cooler in tow, you’ll be set. On Friday, eight gospel acts, including the Singing Reeds and Satisfied, perform. The next day is blues themed. N-2 Blues, the Billy Jones Band and Michael Burks play. Burks, a Camden native and W.C. Handy Award winner, headlines the night with a long set sure to be filled with blistering guitar work. Park staffers say that they plan to make the festival an annual event with new genre focus each year.
4-9 p.m. Friday, June 1; 1-9 p.m. Saturday, June 2. Pinnacle Mountain State Park. $5 for parking.

Alt-rockers play Juanita’s on Saturday.

The Stark brothers, Scott and Brian, formed Starkz in 1998, when they were only 10 and 16, respectively. After establishing their sound in Fort Smith, the band has evolved into one of the state’s preeminent alt-rock combos. Vocalist Isaac Hedinger and new bassist Jerry Cordova round out the line-up. The band’s latest single, “Fight Talk Stop,” is in regular rotation on local radio.
9:30 p.m. Saturday, June 2. Juanita’s. $10.

Annual pride festival takes place on Sunday in downtown Little Rock.

The third annual Little Rock Capital Pride Festival will be held from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday, June 3 at the River Market Pavilions. The event seeks to recognize and support members of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community as well as provide people of all ages with live entertainment and educational information from area organizations, including: ACLU of Arkansas, Center for Artistic Revolution, Human Rights Campaign, HIV Survivors Past and Present and the Green Party of Arkansas. Pittsburgh pop-soul singer Brian Himan will headline the free event, which also features Pride Idol, a take on talent show “American Idol.” For more, visit www.littlerockcapitalpride.org.
2-9 p.m. Sunday, June 3. River Market Pavilions. Free.

Future To-Dos


Movies in the Park screens the ’80s classic on Wednesday.

The ’80s were the halcyon days of the teeny-bop film. The decade’s screen teens were vapid, over/under sexed, ne’er-do-well cliché-spouters — but in a way that was exponentially smarter than their counterparts today. Director John Hughes probably deserves a lion’s share of the credit. In the middle of the decade, he helmed “Sixteen Candles,” “Weird Science,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” and perhaps his highpoint and arguably the genre’s, “The Breakfast Club.” The film tracks five high school archetypes — the jock, the nerd, the delinquent, the freak and the popular girl — through a long day of Saturday detention. Hilarity and self-discovery ensue.
Sundown, Wednesday, June 6. Riverfest Amphitheatre. Free.


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