A Remembrance and a Sigh: There's no satisfying explanation for what triggers the artistic muse. Fort Worth-based painter Ana Beaulac, for example, picked up the brush in 1989 after the tragic death of her son. She and husband Cirrus Bonneau, a photographer and sculptor, are featured in A Remembrance and a Sigh. Both are staunch Catholics who describe the act of creation as a kind of communion with God. Come see if you can locate the holy thread in these works. The show opens January 12 and runs through February 14 at Haggar Gallery, 1845 E. Northgate Drive in Irving. It's free. Call 721-5319.
Elektra: While people complain about how cold and arrogant the field of psychoanalysis is, Freud and the rest of his cronies were in many ways merely theoreticians who streamlined insights on human nature first provided by the classics of literature. Freud didn't create, but rather merely reorganized, concepts like Oedipus and Elektra complexes. The latter refers to an infantile stage of development in which a daughter (supposedly) becomes a rival with her mother for her father's affection. The Dallas Opera presents a highly stylized, erotic production of the Greek tragedy Elektra and we bet it'll be more fun than reading a Freudian essay on childhood sexuality. Performances are January 11, 17, and 20 at 7:30 p.m. and January 14 at 2 p.m. at the Fair Park Music Hall. Tickets are $20-$105. Call 443-1000.
Grosse Fatigue: As part of its Independent Showcase, the USA Film Festival screens one of the most critically acclaimed comedies of 1995--a huge hit in France, where it was produced, as well as in New York City. Grosse Fatigue was written and directed by and stars Michel Blanc, the great comic-dramatic actor whose gnomish charisma would translate to superstardom only in Europe. Blanc plays himself, and rounded up a galaxy of French stars to play themselves, in this absurdist send-up of fame that involves a Blanc look-alike (Blanc again) who is taking over his career. The perpetually aghast actor soon discovers that the public doesn't really care who Michel Blanc is, as long as the image shows up on time. The screening kicks off at 7:30 p.m. at the AMC Glen Lakes Theatres, 9450 N. Central Expressway. Tickets are $6.50. Call 821-NEWS.
Paul Robeson Jr.: If you want to know what it's like to labor in the shadow of a profoundly revered public figure, then just ask Paul Robeson Jr. He is, of course, the son of stage-and-screen-actor-turned-activist Paul Robeson, a man who stands as one of the earliest, most public, and most eloquent advocates for civil rights in America. Robeson Jr. has carved out for himself a reputation as a journalist and archivist who continued his father's activism, but spreads a wider net with news stories that include the complex relationship between blacks and Jews and the fall of the Soviet Union. He comes to Dallas to address the South Dallas Cultural Center's Tenth Anniversary Public Holiday celebration of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday. The Breakfast and Scholarship Awards Ceremony happens at 8 a.m. at the Fairmont Hotel. Tickets are $25 per person. Call 670-0314.
C.J. Critt: With libraries all across the country (including Dallas) taking it in the teeth with municipal budget cuts, library officials are scrambling to find more ways to connect directly with the public. One of the ways you can show support is not painless, but it is downright fun: Attend the Spoken Word Coffee House, a Tuesday evening performance and "kaffee klatsch." Returning after her last warmly received performance in the House is C.J. Critt, the Dallas-based actress-poet-monologist whose credits include the footlights of Broadway and TV commercials (she was the original "ring around the collar" lady). Critt has performed her spoken-word show all around the country to ecstatic reviews. Critt performs at 7 p.m. at 3845 N. Garland at Apollo. A $5 donation for program and refreshments is requested. Call 205-2803.
The Sternheim Project: The Unmentionables and The Snob: Dallas Theater Center artistic director Richard Hamburger commissioned an original adaptation of two great (though rarely performed) turn-of-the-century German masterpieces by Carl Sternheim. The two short plays, The Unmentionables and The Snob, are being produced under the title The Sternheim Project. Both explore in broad comic terms the pursuit of money and social status and how they start to blur together in ridiculous ways as the chase gets more desperate. Co-adapters Paul Lampert, Kate Sullivan, and Melissa Cooper have updated the plays to explore the American 20th century's two crassest decades--the '50s and the '80s. Performances happen Tuesdays through Thursdays at 7:30 p.m.; Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at 2 & 8 p.m.; and Sundays at 2 p.m. through February 4 at the Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd. Tickets are $15-$39. Call 522-