FunStuff: Charlottesville events March 8 and beyond

Pinter Fest
There's something irresistible about seeing the edginess of Nobel Prize-winning English playwright Harold Pinter performed in the warmth of an Afton-area theater named for The Waltons creator Earl Hamner. Local theater maven Boomie Pedersen directs A Slight Ache, which was written in 1958. Head to Nelson while it's still light and have dinner at a local brewery, like the nearby Blue Mountain.
March 8, 9, 10, 7:30pm; March 11, 2pm, Hamner Theater, $15


A Slave in the White House
Not everyone was enthralled with Dolley Madison; and her former slave, Paul Jennings, was one with misgivings, according to his own memoir of working for President James Madison. Barboursville author Elizabeth Dowling Taylor, who has worked at both Monticello and Montpelier, tells Jennings' story and his complex relationship with the first family as a slave and ultimately as a free man (thanks to Daniel Webster) in her new and best-selling book, A Slave in the White House: Paul Jennings and the Madisons.
March 8, New Dominion Book, 5:30pm, free




Do-si-do in Greenwood
Secretly yearn to swing your partner? The Crozet Community Association hosts a country square dance with instruction for that, as well as contra and circle dances, so no experience necessary. Uncle Henry's Favorites will do the pickin'; Brad Sayler is doing the callin', and Supervisor Ann Mallek is doing the organizin'. Donations go to the Crozet Historic District application. Desserts and cider.
March 9, Greenwood Community Center, 7:30-10:30pm, donations


Flight of the Band-rumped Storm-Petrel
We've already learned that "pelagic" means "open sea." David Shoch has tracked down pelagic birds in oceans all over all over the world, including waters off Tasmania, Peru, and Indonesia. This program focuses on the more-attainable sea birds he's seen off Hatteras, North Carolina, and he offers a sneak peek at migrating raptors coming soon over Charlottesville.
March 8, Ivy Creek Natural Area Education Building, 7pm, free




Sprout Film Festival
Now in its 10th year, this New York-based festival is dedicated to bringing awareness about developmental disabilities, such as autism or brain damage, and quashing the stereotypes about them. The films are about (and sometimes made by) developmentally disabled people and show the issues they face, while avoiding an "eat-your-vegetables" tone.
–March 9, MLK Civic Center, 10:30am and 7pm, $10 donation evening



Vintage vinyl
For those kicking themselves for getting rid of their vinyl collections, here's a second chance to fall in love again with those albums you forgot were on the soundtrack of your life. Twenty-five dealers will have thousands of LPs and 45s, joined by CDs, DVDs, and bargain records at the Vinyl and CD Collectors Show.
March 10, Holiday Inn Emmet Street, 10am-4pm, free








Lunch with the artist
When invited to show at Virginia Tech, sculptor Kurt Steger wanted to help ease the pain from the massacre there. He came up with the Burden Boat. Viewers are invited to write their burdens on a slip of paper and put them in the boat, where they'll be ceremonially burned, in this case on March 25 at the end of his sculpture exhibit at Les Yeux du Monde. To do lunch with Steger and catch his artist's talk, RSVP by March 11 at  434-973-5566 or on Les Yeux's website.
March 14, Les Yeux du Monde, noon, $12



WG Clark studies
Here's a nice segue from Les Yeux du Monde, the gallery in a house designed by WG Clark, to an exhibit of Clark's architectural musings of abandoned projects on display in a structure he did see to realization: the East Addition to Campbell Hall, which houses UVA's School of Architecture.
Weekdays through June 3, Dean's Gallery, Campbell Hall, 9am to 5pm, free




Dark, but danceable
By day, Raphael Wintersberger is a sound engineer and former Charlottesvillian now living in Brooklyn. At night, he steps into his latest incarnation, electronic mix-meister Martin Lucifer. Each note is made in the moment from his acoustic/electronic smorgasbord, and no two shows are alike.
March 14, Rapture, 10pm, free






The most surprising thing about the return of hometown phenoms Parachute is that this show hasn't sold out yet. The Charlottesville five, formerly known as Sparky's Flaw, have been touring the globe the past couple of years, first with Kelly Clarkson, and more recently with Kate Voegele. In December, lead singer Will Anderson was linked with Taylor Swift, but maybe that's old news. What's hot is the chance to see this ever-soaring band play at home.
March 14, The Jefferson, 7:15pm, $18 advance





Farmers v. Monsanto
If the idea that Monsanto owns the patents to the genetically engineered seeds producing as much as 85 percent of the food grown in this country  makes you see red, well, you're probably already eating organic foods. And even if not, you may want to hear what Don Patterson, one of the 33 farmers who are plaintiffs in a suit against Monsanto, has to say about what sparked the legal battle. The lawsuit was thrown out of court last week, but the plaintiffs, which include 14 seed companies and 33 agricultural organizations, are not appeased.
March 14, Rebecca's Natural Food, 6:15pm, free

This week's "FunStuff" was compiled by Lisa Provence, and next week's "FunStuff" will be compiled by another newsroom staffer. To get your event considered, send a press release to

Correction March 5: The evening show for the Sprout Film Festival is 7pm, not 7:30pm.

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