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Flight of the Conchords' Kristen Schaal Signs Her 'Sexy Book of Sexy Sex' This Friday @ Chronicle Books

You may recognize indie comic bombshell Kristen Schaal from her turn on HBO's Flight of the Conchords as Brooklyn's most endearing stalker, or from contributions to The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. You may even recognize her distinctive elocutions from a role in Toy Story 3.

Well, get ready for toy stories of a decidedly more adult persuasion when the comedienne reveals a more sultry side during a lunchtime signing of her book The Sexy Book of Sexy Sex at Chronicle Books this Friday.

Mill Valley Film Festival Opens Thursday with Latest from Colin Firth, Hilary Swank

The 33rd Mill Valley Film Festival kicks off Thursday with two opening-night films: The King’s Speech, winner of the Audience Award at last month’s Toronto Film Festival, starring A Single Man Oscar nominee Colin Firth as King George VI, who conquers his humiliating stutter with the help of Geoffrey Rush’s unconventional speech therapist; and Conviction, Tony Goldwyn’s chronicle of a high-school dropout (Hilary Swank) who earns a law degree to free her brother (Sam Rockwell) from prison.

Rebecca Solnit's 'Infinite City' Maps SF in a Whole New Light

"I wanted to make maps gorgeous, seductive, delicious, and beautiful again,” says author Rebecca Solnit, whose 13th book, Infinite City: A San Francisco Atlas (UC Press) will be released in November. “Cartography used to be both an art and a science. I wanted to return to that.” Solnit’s career up to this point—she has authored books on topics as diverse as human response to disaster, getting lost, and wanderlust—prepared her to create an atlas that maps her specific experience with the city she has called home her entire adult life. Solnit collaborated with 27 writers, cartographers, designers, researchers, and artists to create 22 full-color maps that offer whimsical, insightful views of the city, along with essays that expand on the sometimes-surprising juxtapositions within.

One map, titled “Monarchs and Queens,” shows butterfly habitats alongside queer public spaces.

Bloody but Never Broken, Sarah Butler Relives the Infamous Day of the Woman with 'I Spit on Your Grave'

The first time Sarah Butler read the script for I Spit on Your Grave, Steven R. Monroe’s tense, unrelenting remake of the notorious 1980 rape-and-revenge thriller Roger Ebert deemed “a vile bag of garbage, reprehensible and contemptible,” she made an urgent call to her manager.
 
“I’d auditioned for it, but when I saw the script I decided to skip the callback,” says Butler, 25, best known for one-off appearances on CSI: Miami and CSI: New York. “All the nudity, violence, graphic rape scenes – normally, my manager is very protective of me, but he asked me to read it again, so I did. He said it could be the role of a lifetime, and I tried to look at it from that perspective.”

Lizz Roman: This Dance, This Place

Known for captivating choreography in unconventional spaces, Lizz Roman hits Danzhaus this weekend, sending her dancers on another athletic trawl through the halls and stairways of the sometimes nightclub in Potrero.

SPARC, The Swank New Pot Club on Mission

Looking forward to the Prop 19 vote in November, the New York Times Magazine profiled the new San Francisco Patient and Resource Center (SPARC) as the new face of pot clubs last Friday. The chic newcomer, which Curbed describes as "a swank boutique hotel meets a West Elm store," is a far cry from the shadowy sketchiness often associated with these types of joints (there are 24 licensed dispensaries in San Francisco).

This Week's Hottest Events: Broken Bells, Beer Pairing Dinners at Monk's Kettle, and Judd Apatow

Music: Broken Bells and Van Morrison
Power alt rock/indie duo Broken Bells—Danger Mouse (aka Brian Burton) and The Shins' lead James Mercer—has been tearing it up on the music scene since their self-titled debut album release earlier this year. Rolling Stone even flagged the cd "the year's coolest left field pop disc" and they've been on perpetual repeat at the 7x7 offices. You want tickets to this one. $30; Tuesday 10/5; The Fox, 1807 Telegraph Ave., Oakland, apeconcerts.com. But, if cutting-edge, new music isn't your scene, you can always splurge on an oldie but goody. Van Morrison's making a stop in SF. Start singing "Brown Eyed Girl" now. $84+; Friday 10/8; Nob Hill Masonic Center, 1111 California St., livenation.com

Smuin Ballet Does The Shins, 'Oh, Inverted World'

Quickly gaining a reputation for pulling some of the world’s finest choreographers to San Francisco, Smuin Ballet’s world premiere of Trey McIntyre’s Oh, Inverted World is a stunner. Set to music by The Shins, McIntyre fully lives up to his reputation as one of the most sought-after choreographers working today.

 

October's Classical Music Roundup: Takacs Quartet, Joshua Bell at SF Symphony and New Spectrum Ensemble

Takacs Quartet

Takacs Quartet, one of the world’s foremost chamber ensembles, takes the San Francisco stage for the first time in more than 20 years. As does Geraldine Walther, who defected from the San Francisco Symphony five years ago to join Takacs Quartet (as a twenty-nine year veteran, she was probably ready for a change of scenery) (not to imply the SF Symphony scenery isn’t a pleasure to behold). Applying their legendary technical skill and musical magnetism to Haydn, Beethoven, and Bartók (a bow to the ensemble’s Hungarian roots), this Grammy- winning group is a one night only offer.
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