From London in 1920 to later-in-life Vegas shows, Noel Coward was quite the life of the partyor at least his plays were often about the life of the party. The playwright, songwriter and performer and his often-upbeat works have been a huge influence on modern theater. Theatre Three's Jac Alder and Terry Dobson are honoring Coward with a cabaret show of Coward's songs titled Noel Coward: Talent to Amuse. (Appropriate considering his Vegas time was spent performing in that same style.) Now, despite the theater referring to the included numbers as "classic," we honestly don't recognize a one by name. However, once you hear a song by "The Master," (such as "A Room With a View," "Mad About the Boy" or "Why Do the Wrong People Travel") there is a definite familiarity. We're not saying you'll be able to bust out the lyrics, but it's a phenomenon on par with how everyone in the world seems to recognize "Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'." See for yourself at Theatre Three, in the Quadrangle, Thursday through November 19 (7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 7:30 p.m. Sundays). Tickets are $25 and $30. Call 214-871-3300, option 1.
Friday, October 28
"I've played the silver ball./From Soho down to Brighton, I must have played them all./But I ain't seen nothing like [this] in any amusement hall." Seriously. All in one place, the Texas Pinball Festival offers more than 125 pinball machines and arcade games ripe for playfree play. Machines varying in age (manufacturing dates range from the 1950s to 2005) are available for play and purchase, plus the festival plays host to the NASCAR Wizards Tournament (as well as many other contests), a MoNsTeR BaSh PaRtY and more. Even pinball designers will be on hand giving seminars and autographs and answering questions. Unfortunately, the eternal question, "How do you think he does it?" is still emphatically answered with "I don't know!" We suppose only members of the Who can help us with that one. Festival hours are 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Sunday. The Holiday Inn Select-D/FW Airport North is located at 4441 W. Highway 114 at Esters Boulevard in Irving. Admission is $5 to $15 per day with weekend passes available for $20 to $30. Call 214-632-5537 or visit www.texaspinball.com.
Saturday, October 29
Thank goodness the Noble Planetarium at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is presenting Mars At Its Best in observation of Mars Day this year. Man, if we had to see one more guy drone on about Mars at its worst, we were going to lose it. Yeah, so it gained a couple of pounds. The soil wasn't so vibrant in a couple of paparazzi shots. Big deal, folks. It's hard work being a planet--especially when all the political figures have their eyes on you. Who do you trust, you know? The planetarium and the Fort Worth Astronomical Society celebrates the day the Red Planet is closest to Earth (a mere 43,162,788 miles away) with presentations at 6:45 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 8:15 p.m., as well as telescope and video monitoring on the north lawn beginning at 7:30 p.m. Weather permitting, visitors should be able to see the planet at approximately 8:30 p.m. But please, let's all agree not to say anything if Mars looks a little bloated. The FWMSH is located at 1501 Montgomery St. Call 817-255-9300 or visit www.fortworthmuseum.org.
Sunday, October 30
Anyone who ever took anything remotely resembling a film class is familiar with the 1922 silent vampire freak-out Nosferatu. Starring Max Schreck as the gaunt and gruesome bloodsucker, F.W. Murnau's influential film (based on Dracula) would spawn many a remake and inspired spin-off (1979's Werner Herzog/ Klaus Kinski endeavor Nosferatu: Phantom der Nacht and 2000's Shadow of a Vampire are examples). Now it's inspiring an original, improvised score. As part of the Music at the Meadows series, Sunday's 3 p.m. screening of Nosferatu also offers the accompaniment of BL Lacerta, a trio that combines "jazz, classical, rock, electronica and world rhythms." The event begins with an introduction by associate professor in the division of cinema-television at Southern Methodist University's Meadows School of the Arts and horror film guru Kevin Heffernan. We warn you, though: If you've never heard of or seen Murnau's Nosferatu, Schreck's teeth alone may inspire youto leave the light on at night. The Meadows Museum is located at 5900 Bishop Blvd. Admission is free. Call 214-768-2516.
Monday, October 31
Dig around. It's probably still in a drawer somewhere. Maybe it's in that dust-covered Caboodle. Just admit it. You still have a tube of Revlon's Blackberry lipstick. A relic from that requisite goth phase in high school. You paired it with blue-black hair dye and black tights, remember? (And this wasn't just a girl thing--we've got pictures to prove that.) Now before you go tossing that teenage cosmetic, why not bust it out one last time for a little fun and a lot of charity at Goth Ball 2005, presented by Arts Fighting Cancer and, well, us? Not only do all proceeds benefit the Cancer Relief Fund, but there's a $1,500 prize for "Best Costume." No one ever said it did wonders with your skin tone, but who's to say your old friend Blackberry won't help you win that booty? Tickets are $20 ($15 in advance), and admission is for those 21 and older. Call 214-752-6759 or visit www.gothball.com.