Porcelain: Two years ago the Dallas Theater Center staged Chay Yew's Porcelain as a reading for its "Big D Festival of the Unexpected." You could've heard a pin drop in that basement space as an Asian-Anglo hustler meets his Anglo lover during sex in a public rest room, and then promptly murders the fellow. The shock value of the material is emphasized over its more subtle tales about the vagaries of human nature. Kitchen Dog Theatre mounts a full production of the award-winning Porcelain, daring Dallas audiences to find themselves in this tale of social outcasts. Performances happen Thursday-Saturday, 8 p.m., and Sunday, 2 p.m., at the McKinney Avenue Contemporary, 3120 McKinney Ave. Tickets are $6-$12 (Sunday is pay-what-you-can). Call 871-ARTS.
Dance Exchange: A Choreographers Showcase: Contemporary Dance/Fort Worth is that city's only premiere professional modern dance company, which in North Texas pretty much means, "We love being ignored by the community at large." Actually, CD/FW has maintained a pretty steady audience base for its innovative presentations of contemporary choreography from around Texas and the country. Dance Exchange: A Choreographers Showcase is the last performance of its sixth season and the eighth time the company has performed this combination of brand-new modern pieces, a mix of Texas debuts and original commissions. Performances happen July 12 and 13 at 8 p.m. and July 14 at 2 p.m. in the Orchestra Hall, 4401 Trail Lake Drive in Fort Worth. Tickets are $6-$20. Call (817) 335-9000.
Gleaning Light: A Survey of Contemporary Pinhole Photography: Even as image technology--cameras both static and motion--grows by leaps and bounds thanks to our pal, the computer, there's a Luddite-ish group of national picture makers who've discovered the "limitations" of old technology often serve as fascinating resources for creativity. Gleaning Light: A Survey of Contemporary Pinhole Photography features 59 national photographers who employ the pinhole camera--a lenseless imagemaker that relies on the artist's knowledge and intuition for light. The fact that pinhole cameras are often constructed by the photographers themselves based on the requirements of the shoot make this medium all the more personal. The opening reception kicks off July 12, 7-9:30 p.m. The show runs through August 31 at Photographic Archives Gallery, 5117 W. Lovers Lane. It's free. Call 352-3166.
Discount Comedy Warehouse: The Discount Comedy Warehouse is a year-old Deep Ellum-based quartet of sketch and improvisatory comics who refer to themselves as the "George Zimmer" of comedy troupes. In other words, to the question of whether or not you'll laugh yourselves silly, they "guarantee it." This is actually the least funny line on a hysterical press release that maintains the troupe's talent "crashes onto the stage like a truckload of meat through a vegetarian outreach group." Various members have studied with Chicago's Second City, "while others performed in front of their families on religious holidays." Decide for yourself whether the troupe matches the hype. Performances happen July 12 and 13 at 11:15 p.m. at Pocket Sandwich Theatre, 5400 E. Mockingbird Lane. Tickets are $7. Call 821-1860.
Oliver Everett: It's hard for even the most Anglophilic of Americans to feel much sympathy watching England's Royal Family fall apart. After all, we peasants have experienced the bad blood that currently flows heavily among the offspring of the Queen Mother, although most of us haven't seen it in the bright shade of blue in which it currently splashes their antique walls. Oliver Everett must be the most restrained man in England: As the librarian at Windsor Castle and assistant keeper of the Royal Archives, he's surely heard the really hot gossip that hasn't found its way to the tabloids yet. Unfortunately, he visits Dallas for a very benign reason: to discuss the watercolor paintings featured in the Dallas Museum of Art's exhibit, Views of Windsor by Thomas and Paul Sandby from the Collection of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Everett speaks at 11:30 a.m. in the Horchow Auditorium of the Dallas Museum of Art, 1717 N. Harwood. Admission is $7. Call 922-1200.
Moonlore: Myths and Folklore from Around the World: Once upon a time people feared and admired the moon because it was their only source of guidance for work and travel during the night. The light bulb and other advances in artificial illumination have pretty much made this function obsolete worldwide, yet the pagan aura that surrounds Ms. Luna has only barely diminished. Arlington-based author Gwydion O'Hara for a long time has been fascinated with the moon as muse, mother, avenger, and goddess, hence his book, Moonlore: Myths and Folklore From Around the World. In addition to basic factual info about the moon's still-important scientific role, the author includes 60 stories from ancient and modern societies. He discusses his book 1-3 p.m. at Scorpio Herbs Bookstore, 3015 Sale St. It's free. Call (817) 446-3202.
Nia akimbo: You should know that the beautiful name "nia akimbo" that graces the Dallas-based poet was not given to her at birth. (As some wise scribe once said, only the names we give ourselves will matter when we die.) The phrase "nia akimbo," literally translated, means "purpose misplaced," which partially explains this woman's sensibilities when it comes to her literary calling: She believes writers often toil in a state of what Langston Hughes called "a dream deferred." Nia akimbo made Dallas headlines when her poem "Here" was selected to be inscribed on the Freedman's Cemetery Memorial Project. She offers an evening of story and verse for Paperbacks Plus/Upstairs and the Neighborhood Touring Program of the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs. The readings will begin at 7:30 p.m. at Paperbacks Plus, 6115 La Vista in Lakewood. Admission is free. For more information, call 827-4860.
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