• Kerry Bishe stars in Kevin Smith's film, "Red State."

First off, just let me say that no matter what else you’re doing this weekend, make sure you hang out downtown. Going to theater somewhere? Hang out downtown after. Going to the NUVO Nightlife Guide party at TRU in Broad Ripple? Hang out downtown after. Why? Because it’s Big Ten Championships, folks, and there will be thousands of people here from all over the Midwest and beyond and you’ll want to meet them and gladhand them and embrace them with your Hoosier, down-to-earth, no-nonsense savoir faire. Why, we’re so confident in our homespun selves, we can even use French terms, without fear of recrimination! So. Go downtown, press the flesh, spread the world of the coming revolution, especially if you know about any coming revolution.

Our Do or Die pick this week is Kevin Smith’s unconventional approach to releasing his new film, Red State. Rather than go through a studio or distributor, Smith is doing it DIY and taking it cross-country, offering both the movie and a post-movie Q&A (led by Smith himself, presumably), in order to both raise awareness about the film and gain back what the movie originally cost. We like that “pushing the envelope outside the box” sort of mentality, but that’s no surprise when it comes to Smith (Clerks, Dogma, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back).

The aforementioned Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament will be fascinating, even if you don’t go, because fans will be wearing the colors of the teams they are supporting, a lead-in to an impromptu conversation, if you’re into that sort of thing. Impromptu conversing with other humans, I mean; we know you love basketball. While we figure IU won’t make it far, Purdue might, and we care about these particular teams because we are, basically, territorial animals, and thus proximity is important on an anthropological, evolutionary basis. Get the low-down on the contest from Andrew Roberts.

If your team loses, why not embrace the tragedy of it all (or should I say la tragédie of it all) and commiserate with Carmen? The Indianapolis Opera’s season opener is La Tragédie de Carmen by George Bizet, adapted by Peter Brook. Credited as George Bizet’s most popular opera, La Tragédie is based on a young gypsy, Carmen, who incites love and jealousy from two young suitors, and who knows, maybe there’s a basketball contest loss thrown in there somewhere.

It’s Fringe Festival all year ‘round these days, as the folks at IndyFringe are filling their stage up with all sorts of performance art. For you Fringe fans, you’ll be thrilled to hear that Monkey Poet is back — AKA comedian Matt Penesh, performing in two shows, Welcome to the UK! and in an American premiere, Welcome to Afghanistan. A hit from the Edinburgh Fringe, Afghanistan is based off the memoir of Lt. John Greenwood who was involved in the first Anglo-Afghan war in 1839. UK is purely stand-up, but partly promotional for his album which will be on sale at the show. See both shows!

Here’s a new one at Herron, one of our premier arts destinations. They’re hitting it out of the park with their next show (had to use a different-than-basketball sports metaphor there), a reception and exhibit that includes Finnish artist William Dennisuk, Serbian artist Ivana Popov and Canadian artist Daniel Jolliffe. Sounds like a world party to me! The installation is perfectly timed with Indiana's growing appreciation for the current flourishing — and occasional controversy surrounding — of our city’s public sculptures.

If you like your music with a Celtic flair — and we know you’re looking forward to St. Patty’s Day activities — then check out Camerata Ireland. Sponsored by Tourism Ireland, this splash of Celtic charm will include programs infused with Mozart, Rossini and Barber as well as the vocals of Celine Byrne. The concert, honored by the joint patronage of Mary McAleese, President of Ireland and HRH Queen Elizabeth II, is a celebration of Ireland and its rich musical talent. Sounds grand!

Is this self-promotion? Nope. NUVO knows how to throw a dance party, and so I’m not gonna miss our Nightlife Guide Launch Party. The DJ list is beatific. It’s the folks I-want-to-play-at-my-wake list, even though I ain’t in any hurry to die or anything: A Squared Industries; OhBeOne; Indiana Jones; Twin Peaks; Action Jackson; Helicon; Jackola; Matt Allen; Stylistic; Uzo; Jamestown and Kodama. Celebrate nightlife at the nightlife guide launch party; how ouroboros can you get!

Anybody who knows me knows I am the height of fashion. Really, my fashion sense is so refined, I am wearing the same clothes I have donned for 20, even 30 years. Truly, my “era” just keeps coming back ‘round, again and again! But if you want to get up to speed (‘nother sports metaphor, for those of you keeping count) on what the cool kids are wearing, then Midwest Fashion Week is your place to be. We thought this was such a cool event, we did a feature on it.

If you haven’t been to a Naptown Roller Girls bout then, well, you’re a diminished human being and it’s time to rectify that! The ever-impressive Naptown Roller Girls are playing on Saturday at the Shamrock and Roll bout against Milwaukee's Brewcity Bruisers, the NRG’s fifth bout this season. It's a double header, with the NRG's Warning Belles playing the first bout, and the Tornado Sirens playing second.

Finally, we like stories. That’s what got us into this madness of working for a newspaper. So we’re pumped that Antonio Sacre is here. The award-wining solo performance artist is brought to you by Storytelling Arts of Indiana, whose organization's annual benefit, Talk of the Town, will precede the show, which includes a buffet dinner, games, a silent auction and a chance to talk with Sacre.

So there ya go, it’s fashion week here in Indy: people will be dressed in all sorts of costumes, from roller derby uniforms, to school logos to edgy fashion. Get out there and see it!


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