Allan Knee's new romantic comedy, Syncopation, is an endearing story about a Henry, a Jewish meatpacker who dreams of becoming a championship ballroom dancer. When he places an ad for a dance partner, the floodgates are opened to a world of awkward interpersonal goings-on and old-fashioned hilarity. Opens Friday, Feb. 8, at Meadow Brook Theatre, Oakland University, Rochester; 248-377-3300. Runs Wednesday-Sunday until March 5. Tickets $20-$36. Visit mbtheatre.com
The group takes its name from the Missouri trailer park where singer-guitarist George Hunter spent his early childhood, and Catfish Haven does its white trash roots right. They've nabbed the attention of bands like My Morning Jacket, Daniel Johnston, Kings of Leon and Zwan all of whom have extended invitations for the band to play alongside them. But it's their raspy roots rock sound that has stirred up the attention of music fans in their hometown of Chicago. Lager House, 1254 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-961-4668. With Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin and Bird Gang.
Renowned children's author-illustrator Ed Young comes to the Southfield Public Library this week. Young has won three Caldecott Medals for The Emperor and the Kite (1968), Lon Po Po: Red Riding Hood Story from China (1990) and Seven Blind Mice (1993). The author will be available for a meet-and-greet and will present a special screening of the animated film Sadako, illustrated by Young himself and written by Eleanor Coerr. 6 p.m., 26300 Evergreen Rd., Southfield; 248-796-4200. Free.
The J. Moss Project
Hip hop, modern R&B, pop and traditional gospel get equal billing with the J. Moss Project this week. Moss is currently touring with Yolanda Adams on her "Yolanda ... Today" tour, but returns to his hometown for a special offering of his most famous hits, including tunes from PAJAM, Moss' Def Jam Records-backed gospel group. 7:30 p.m., Greater Grace Church, 23500 W. Seven Mile Rd., Detroit; 313-402-7305.
URBAN/Jungle Love and Femo-technology
Presented by a group of folks called the Laboratory for Creative Thought, the URBAN/Jungle Love and Femo-technology installation at the 555 Gallery should be worth a look-see. The exhibition is an exploration of women, African-Americans, technology, alienation and cultural collectivism. Friday's multimedia opening reception also features a performance from ALMA Drum & Dance. 6 p.m., 4884 Grand River Ave., Detroit; 313-894-4202. Display ends Feb. 25.
The Dirty Show
It just wouldn't be Valentine's Day around these parts without the phallus-friendly art exhibit, The Dirty Show. For the seventh year in a row, H.D.B.I.C (Head Dirty Bird In Charge) curator Jerry Vile brings together some of the finest sex-positive (and sometimes plain nasty) artwork from across the country. Expect photography, sculpture, painting and performance art from the best in the sex biz. Tangent Gallery, 715 E. Milwaukee, Detroit. Opening night doors open at 5 p.m., though the bar doesn't open until 7 or 8. Hours vary through the week. Details and ticket information at dirtyshow.org.
Erotic Poetry & Music Festival
Some people say it's neither erotic nor poetry and let's face it, some of what's read is little more than dirty prose but the Erotic Poetry Festival at 313.JAC, like the Dirty Show, is a tradition. Where else can diatribe masters like Jimmy Doom (former frontman for hardcore outfit A.L.D.) exorcise his sickest and most twisted demons without being thrown out by the shirt collar? Music for dancing will be provided by Causing a Scene, Silent Violent and others; featured poets include Cindi St. Germain, Scotty Bowman, Ian Lee Lamb and Auntie Babs. At 313.JAC, 624 Brush St., Detroit; 313-962-7067.
If saxophonist Kenny Garrett had never done anything after his killer solo on Miles Davis' Live Around the World CD (covering Michael Jackson's "Human Nature," no less), he'd still be on the all-time heavies list. Of course, homeboy Garrett has done plenty since. This week, he and his quartet are featured with the University of Michigan Jazz Ensemble directed by pianist Ellen Rowe for the University of Michigan Jazz Festival. 8 p.m., Power Center, 121 Fletcher St., Ann Arbor. Call 734-764-2538 for information. Tickets $30-$10 (lowest price for students with I.D.). Garrett also appears at a 4 p.m. workshop for festival participants at the Power Center with the public invited to observe for free.
Share the Magic Clothing Drive
As you are getting all gussied up for your big Valentine's Day date this year, take a moment to think about the people out there in your own neighborhood, perhaps who don't have the ability to bathe regularly. Lack of personal hygiene is just one of the hidden factors that prevent many homeless people from getting out of their current situation: This Valentine's Day, why not give back? You can donate clothing and hygiene products for the Capuchin Soup Kitchen's shower program at Art Van Furniture in Warren. Drop offs are 6-10 a.m. at 6500 14 Mile Rd., Warren; 586-939- 2100
A Fine Day: Anna Cagialosi
It's easy to see that fine artist Anna Cagialosi's background is in fashion. The charming female characters that inhabit her paintings are delicate yet striking, and her contextualization fabulously conjures images of fabric and flesh. Runs until Feb. 25 at Primary Space Gallery, 2750 Yemans St., Hamtramck; 313-870-9470.Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org