SHOP PENN Playlist for April

Temps are on the rise in University City and now is the time to get out and enjoy all that the district has to offer. #ShopPenn is here for you with all the best exhibits, events, and shows to check out throughout the month of April. Find out everything happening with the latest edition of the “Shop Penn Playlist,” a snapshot of the top events being offered around the Penn campus all month.

Beautiful Blackbird: The Creative Spirit of Ashley Bryan – Penn Libraries
Opens April 6

In 2019 the Ashley Bryan Center donated the archive of the renowned artist, author, and humanitarian Ashley Bryan, who died last year at the age of 98, to the Kislak Center at the Penn Libraries. This exhibition explores his century-long story, the story of one man — seeking his place in a world that did not always welcome him, finding himself through observation and expression, and using his creative gifts to make sense of his life and to help others to do the same.

The School for Temporary Liveness – The Rotunda
April 6-8

The School for Temporary Liveness invites you to gather in Philadelphia from April 6–8, 2023 for three days of collective study and experiments in practice, performance, and pedagogy. Located at the Rotunda and Slought, STL Vol. 3 operates as a para-site. If the university is typically understood as the place for proper forms of education, then STL offers a space beside the institution—a temporary zone for the unfolding of our improper and uneven assembly.

Penn Singers: A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder – Penn Live Arts
April 7-8

A Gentleman's Guide To Love and Murder is a witty, whacky musical comedy that follows Monty Navarro as he slaughters his way to the top. The D'Ysquith family are members of the British aristocracy and as Monty is shocked to discover, they're also his very own flesh and blood - which Monty is ready to spill to get his share of the family fortune.

Bowen*Young – World Café Live
April 11

With haunting and ethereal songs that masterfully delve into the depths of ferocious love, heartbreaking loss and steadfast hope, the debut album, Dangerous Love, by new duo Bowen Young unveils a unique style of music the couple has dubbed “Cinematic Americana.” Bowen Young’s timeless debut record created by Clare Bowen and husband Brandon Robert Young is a multi-sensory feast. The music, produced by Americana songwriter / producer Sean McConnell, invokes themes painted by the duo’s powerfully authentic lyrics and hypnotic harmonies.

Bulrusher – Penn Live Arts
April 13-16

Bulrusher by Eisa Davis delicately explores the intricacies of an emerging racial awareness and self-identity in a small, isolated, idyllic town in the redwood country north of San Francisco. Set in 1955 with the murder of Emmet Till distantly haunting the background, Bulrusher is about an orphaned multiracial girl with a gift for clairvoyance that makes her feel like a stranger even amongst the strange: the taciturn schoolteacher who adopted her, the madam who runs a brothel with fierce discipline, the logger with a zest for horses and women, and a guitar-slinging boy who is after Bulrusher’s heart.

Paul Taylor Dance Company – Penn Live Artstwo dancers on stage in front of a black background
April 21-22

“One of the most exciting, innovative, and delightful dance companies in the entire world,” (The New York Times) the Paul Taylor Dance Company returns to our stage in a program including the world premiere of If You Could Swallow the Sun by Omar Román De Jesús as well as Le Sacre du Printemps (The Rehearsal), where a dance rehearsal and film noir whodunit merge in a clever reimagining of the Stravinsky masterpiece, and Brandenburgs, an elegant and joyous Taylor classic set to Bach’s much-loved concertos. “The American spirit soars whenever Taylor’s dancers dance,” (San Francisco Chronicle) and this performance will be no exception.

Stephen Ulrich and Big Lazy – RadioKismet
April 22

NYC's gritty instrumental trio will perform their trademark crime jazz, guitar noir and highway twang as well as music from Ulrich’s recent solo release Music from This American Life (Barbes Records). Stephen Ulrich guitarist and Big Lazy band leader has released his first solo album Music from This American Life. The album is a collection of 10 pieces Ulrich was commissioned to write For Ira Glass’ iconic radio program of the same name. Ulrich is best known for his long-running ‘crime jazz’ trio Big Lazy and for his score to the HBO series Bored to Death. Barbes Records has simultaneously released his band’s back catalogue of 6 albums.

Candlelight: A Tribute to Taylor Swift – World Café Live
April 25

Candlelight concerts bring the magic of a live, multi-sensory musical experience to awe-inspiring locations like never seen before in Philadelphia. Get your tickets now to discover the music of Taylor Swift at World Cafe Live under the gentle glow of candlelight.

Seeds of Change Kickoff – Penn Museum
April 26

We’re not going to soften it—the news about climate change is not a problem for the future. It’s happening here and now, affecting billions of people across the earth. But there are solutions, sometimes from unexpected places, and you can be a part of it. As a living hub for ongoing dialogue, connection, and activism, the Penn Museum presents Seeds of Change, a new series of programs intended to spark curiosity, share facts, and inspire action around some of the most pressing issues of our time.

The Gathering – The Rotunda
April 27

The Gathering is the longest/strongest-running truly Hip Hop event in Philly. The Gathering IS b-boys/b-girls, pop-lockers, emcees, graffiti writers, DJs, men, women, and children of all ages enjoying an organic, community-based celebration of the struggle, the Love, and the culture of Hip Hop.

ICA Benefit 2023 – Institute of Contemporary Art
April 27

ICA’s Benefit celebrates the meaningful connections ICA offers to art, artists, and audiences. Proceeds provide critical support for ICA’s exhibitions and engagement programs. Join ICA for an extraordinary evening honoring Maori Karmael Holmes, founder and Chief Executive and Artistic Officer of BlackStar Projects, and Ken Lum, artist, Marilyn Jordan Taylor Presidential Professor and Chair of the Department of Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design.

Penn Relays – Franklin Fieldlong jumper in the air with a stadium crowd watching
April 27-29

Penn Relays is the oldest and largest track and field competition in the United States, hosted annually since April 21, 1895 by the University of Pennsylvania at Franklin Field. More athletes run in the Penn Relays than at any other track and field meet in the world. It regularly attracts more than 15,000 participants from high schools, colleges, and track clubs throughout North America and abroad, notably Jamaica, competing in more than 300 events over five days.

Rock to the Future’s Annual Music For All Ball – World Café Live
April 29

Rock to the Future is playing for peace at their Music for All Ball on April 29th at World Cafe Live! Celebrate and support Rock to the Future’s music-based anti-violence programs and discover the transformative role it plays in the lives of the young people they serve. Emceed by Quentin Williams (DragonTree Media Group), this night-to-remember will include collaborations with Rock to the Future students and incredible Philadelphia musicians including Sug Daniels, Reef the Lost Cauze, Natasha Felder, and a full-set from The Bacon Brothers, including their new anthem “Philly Thing.”