June 11: A.R. Rahman, Colleen and more

Rajeev Gupta/APIndian superstar: Indian singer and composer A.R. Rahman is best known in the U.S. for his Oscar-winning music for the film “Slumdog Millionaire.” [8 p.m.

Who’s in town

French musician Colleen is performing atmospheric, melodic pop music from her latest album, “Captain of None.” [7 p.m., Exploratorium, Pier 15, S.F.]

Lectures

Panama Canal: Former U.S. diplomat Gene Bigler joins local historians and business experts in looking at the history of the Panama Canal, which inspired the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition, and its future impact on the California economy. [6 p.m., Commonwealth Club, 555 Post St., S.F.]

Drink up: Adam Rogers spills the secrets of cocktails in his new book, “Proof: The Science of Booze.” [6:30 p.m., Schultz Cultural Hall, Oshman Family Jewish Community Center, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto]

LGBT history: Poet and activist Adrian Brooks sheds new light on 100 years of LGBT activism in “The Right Side of History.” [7 p.m., Books Inc., 2275 Market St., S.F.]

S.F. nostalgia: Frank Dunnigan’s book “Growing Up In San Francisco’s Western Neighborhoods” includes his memories of 49ers games at Kezar Stadium, Zim burgers and more. [7 p.m., BookShop West Portal, 80 West Portal Ave., S.F.]

“Planck” story: A launch party marks the release of Brandon R. Brown’s “Planck: Driven by Vision, Broken by War,” which tells the story of the German physicist whose son was executed for attempting to assassinate Adolf Hitler. [7 p.m., Folio Books, 3957 24th St., S.F.]

Literary events

Poetry reading: “Voz Sin Tinta” is a monthly showcase of bilingual poetry. [6:30 p.m., Alley Cat Books, 3036 24th St., S.F.]

At the public library

Shadow theater: Daniel Barash tells stories using shadow puppets. [2 p.m., Bernal Heights, 500 Cortland Ave., S.F.]

Velvet Underground lecture: Richie Unterberger, author of “White Light/White Heat: The Velvet Underground Day by Day,” is doing a multimedia presentation about the history of the groundbreaking New York band. [6 p.m., Potrero Branch, 1616 20th St., S.F.]

At the colleges

Glass art: Artists Mary Chuduk and Jan Harrell are leading a panel discussion about glass and enamel art. [7 p.m., Nahl Hall, California College of the Arts, 5212 Broadway, Oakland]

Local activities

Comedy showcase: Du Kurpalani, Heather Turman and Jon Durnell are among the comedians at this week’s edition of “Mission Position.” [8 p.m., Lost Weekend Video, 1034 Valencia Ave., S.F.]

1980s flashback: Whitesnake, known for albums such as “Lovehunter” and “Come and Get It,” is touring with original singer David Coverdale. [8 p.m., Regency Ballroom, 1290 Sutter St., S.F.]

Power of Thor: Bodybuilder, rock singer and B-movie actor John-Mikl Thor, who rose to fame in the 1970s, attempts a comeback in the documentary “I Am Thor.” Thor is hitting the stage afterward at Thee Parkside. [7 p.m., Roxie Theater, 3117 16th St., S.F.; 9 p.m., Thee Parkside, 1600 17th St., S.F.]

Indian superstar: Indian singer and composer A.R. Rahman is best known in the U.S. for his Oscar-winning music for the film “Slumdog Millionaire.” [8 p.m., City National Civic, 135 W. San Carlos St., San Jose]

Events

NightLife: This week’s NightLife at the Academy includes live music by Hanni El Khatib, Hot Flash Heat Wave and more. [6 p.m., California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, S.F.]

Jewish poetry: Prominent and not-so-prominent local Jewish poets are reading the works of late Jewish writers such as Joel Oppenheimer, Paul Celan, Gertrude Stein and more. [6:30 p.m., Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F.]

Graphic novel: Artist Koren Shadmi discusses his new graphic novel, “Mike’s Place: A True Story of Love, Blues and Terror in Tel Aviv,” which is based on a true story. [6 p.m., Mission Comics and Art, 3520 20th St., S.F.]

Silence is golden: Comedy classic “The General” (1926) stars silent-film star Buster Keaton, who was known for doing his own death-defying stunts. [7:30 p.m., Balboa Theatre, 3630 Balboa St., S.F.]

Stand-up comedy: Eric Schwartz, who has appeared on “The Tonight Show” and BET, is headlining a comedy bill that also includes Dave Reinitz and Clara Bijl. [8 p.m., Rooster T. Feathers Comedy Club, 157 W. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale]artsSan Franciscothings to do

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