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The Met reaches Arkansas 

HAIRSPRAY: Final  performance.
  • HAIRSPRAY: Final performance.

In an effort to bring opera to the masses, New York’s Metropolitan Opera began broadcasting its programs in high-definition video at movie theaters in major cities around the country last year, and the program, “The Metropolitan Opera Goes to the Movies,” has been expanded this year to Little Rock.

Last Saturday, the Met showcased Placido Domingo in Tan Dun’s “The First Emperor” in a live broadcast at the Breckenridge Stadium 12 theater. The next Met production is a rebroadcast of “The Magic Flute,” pared down to a 100-minute production that should be enjoyable viewing for children and adults. The show is Tuesday, Jan. 23, beginning at 7:30 p.m. at the Breckenridge 12, in the Breckenridge Village shopping center on Rodney Parham Road off Interstate 430.

Julie Taymor, who brought “The Lion King” to Broadway, directs Mozart’s “The Magic Flute,” featuring the puppetry of dancing bears, flying birds and a giant serpent. The opera is sung in English and features a young cast conducted by Met Maestro James Levine.

Admission for this and all the Met shows is $18. The Breckenridge Stadium 12 will broadcast shows from the Met each month through April. For a full schedule, see www.metoperafamily.org/metopera/broadcast/hd_events.aspx.

More ‘Hairspray’

The national tour of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical “Hairspray,” based on the John Waters film, will wrap up its three-night run in Little Rock on Thursday, Jan. 18, at Robinson Center Music Hall. The show stars Brooklynn Pulver as Tracy Turnblad, an overweight teen-ager who wants to land a spot on ‘The Corny Collins Show,” a Baltimore afternoon TV dance party similar to “American Bandstand.” She ultimately hopes to get the show to allow white and black kids to dance together at a time (1962) when that wasn’t allowed, and she also has her heart set on landing the handsome Link Larkin.

The show is part of Celebrity Attractions’ 2006-07 season of Broadway hits. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $17 to $52 and are available through Celebrity Attractions (244-8800, or the Robinson Center box office before the show) or Ticketmaster (975-7575).

Wildwood features
Wynston-Smith

Mary-Wynston Smith, whose career began with the Wildwood Young Artist Program in 1973 as its first participant, will present an evening of song in Wildwood Park’s Salon Series on Friday, Jan. 19.

“Mary Wynston-Smith and Friends” begins at 8 p.m. at the park on Denny Road, just off Kanis Road in West Little Rock. Wynston-Smith will present “Wesendock Lieder” by Wagner, and Timothy Tucker will join Wynston-Smith for “Coffee Cantata” by Bach.

For tickets or more information, call 821-7275, ext. 232, or visit www.wildwoodpark.org.

Boats galore

The annual Marine Expo at the Statehouse Convention Center this weekend will offer hundreds of boats, from bass boats to ski boats to deck boats to party barges. And, besides boats for sale, there are discounts on fishing tackle and other boating-related items, plus prize giveaways.

Hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $4 for everyone 13 and up. Call 225-6177.

Weekend does ‘West Side Story’

A special Thursday night opening kicks off the Weekend Theater’s production of the Broadway hit “West Side Story,” with music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim.

The story by Arthur Laurents, based on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, involves rival youth gangs, the Jets and the Sharks, dealing with racism and poverty-filled lives. Jamie Scott Blakey directs the show, with musical direction by Lori Isner.

The show opens Jan. 18 and run through Sunday, Jan. 21, then picks up again for shows Jan. 25-28. Thursday, Friday and Saturday shows are at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday’s matinee is at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $18 for adults and $14 for students and seniors.

Call 374-3761 for reservations.

CTLR’s ‘Noises Off’

Frank O. Butler will direct the Community Theatre of Little Rock’s production of the comedy “Noises Off,” which starts Friday, Jan. 19, and runs through Jan. 28 at Woolly Auditorium on the Arkansas School for the Blind campus.

The show focuses on a group of actors performing in a touring British bedroom farce, as the troupe’s backstage drama begins to spill onstage, resulting in a farce-within-a-farce. The play by Michael Frayn inspired a 1992 film of the same name. CTLR’s cast includes Susan Andres, Rachel Archer, Perry Bland and Harold Dean.

Showtimes are 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, with the show resuming Friday, Jan. 26. Tickets are $14 for adults and $12 for students and seniors. Call 663-9494.

Children’s Theatre
pigs out

The Arkansas Arts Center’s Children’s Theatre takes on a fabled tale, “This Little Piggy Went to the Market,” for shows beginning Friday and running for three weekends. When Mother Piggy sends her piglet to the village for groceries, she reminds him to be kind to others, obey the rules and never leave the road. But will the curious pig obey his mother?

Showtimes are 7 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday, and tickets are $14 for adults and $11 for children. Call 372-4000.

MOD sounds off

You’ll be picking up “Good Vibrations” at the Museum of Discovery as the interactive venue opens its newest exhibit on Saturday, Jan. 20.

“Good Vibrations: Light, Sound and Motion” will allow visitors to explore the nature of science with 15 hands-on exhibits that encourage learning about weather, sound, light, geology and motion. They’ll illustrate heat emitted by the body via an infrared camera, how low-pressure gas affects electrical charges, how sound vibrates liquid in a glass tube and forms small geysers, and the differences in sound waves emitted by three musical strings.

The exhibits were purchased from the world-renowned Exploratorium in San Francisco by the Arkansas Discover Network, a consortium of museums and educational centers around the state.

Admission is $7 for adults and $6 for children ages 1-12 and seniors through Jan. 31, then the price will rise a $1. Call 396-7050 or visit www.amod.org.

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