Live from South Park
The pitch about Isaac Hayes comes with the subject line "Black Moses," and part of the text reads, "How many times does a person get a chance to go to a free concert by a Grammy-winning, Oscar-winning, gold record-selling, cookbook-writing, barbecue sauce aficionado who also happens to be a member of the royal family of Ghana, West Africa?" In-deed. But this smorgasbord of accomplishments excludes the one Hayes is perhaps now most famous for--Chef, the character he plays on South Park. Chef is the reason the Dallas Museum of Art is planning for more than 18,000 fans at its free summer concert on Friday. Chef, with his deep voice. Chef, with his No. 1 U.K. single "Chocolate Salty Balls (p.s. I love you.)." Chef, whom all the ladies love. Yes, these days, it is Chef, and not Shaft, with which people identify Hayes. Still, there will be plenty of Shaft at the DMA because, during An Evening With Isaac Hayes, he likely will play the theme song that made the man famous--the first time. The concert's free and begins at 8 p.m. at the DMA's Ross Avenue Plaza. The museum is located at 1717 N. Harwood St. Call 214-922-1200 or visit www.dallasmuseumofart.org. --Paul Kix
Some things Dr. Phil just doesn't cover. Say, for example, your 9-year-old daughter becomes obsessed with chanting prayers in a dead language and begins to pull down your 7-year-old with her. Grounding won't cut it. Luckily Bob and Linda Forman of Sparks, Nevada, knew just what to do. They met the unexpected Hindu spirit in their Catholic daughters with an equal dose of entrepreneurial spirit, farming the girls out for concerts under the name Shanti Shanti. Bob, an unsuccessful musician in his own right, played backup, figuring that the Sanskrit chants passed down for 5,000 years couldn't stand on their own, while Linda, the hippie mom whose fault this was in the first place, managed the group. Sixteen years later, the Forman juggernaut is well on its way to The Kelly Family-like status. Sure, to an actual Hindu, Shanti Shanti might have something of a credibility problem. Imagine what a Catholic might make of some hot Hindu sisters reciting Latin Mass, with heavy reverb, synthesizers and Hanson-like harmonies. In fact, a couple of Catholic girls hawking Hindu prayers might not sit too well with the cardinal-formerly-known-as-Ratzinger either, if he weren't so busy trying to keep condoms out of Africa. Shanti Shanti performs at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Cathedral of Hope, 5910 Cedar Springs Road. Call 214-520-7828. --Rick Kennedy
Top o' the Toons
Amid the normal childhood crushes (Tom Wopat, Shawn Cassidy, Duran Duran), two of mine stuck out. At a young age, I actually called Jimmy Carter "foxy." (Go ahead, wince.) And at not so young an age, I publicly stated that Eric from The Little Mermaid was a total hottie, and, well, he's a cartoon. I've regretted both instances for many years. I don't, however, regret purchasing tickets ($11 to $69) for Disney's ON THE RECORD, a musical revue of 64 Disney songs...including two from Mermaid (yes!). Envy Ariel with me at The Music Hall at Fair Park from June 21 through July 3. Call 214-631-ARTS. --Merritt Martin
By the Book?
I need to know about the sledgehammer. Will there be a sledgehammer? Will Annie Wilkes, in Simon Moore's theatrical adaptation of Misery, place a plank of wood--as she did in the movie--between Paul Sheldon's ankles, tie the man down and take a mighty swipe at his feet with the ballooned metal edge of that heavy sledgehammer? Because if Annie does that in the play, I'm in. The Richardson Theatre Centre, 718 Canyon Creek Square in Richardson, performs Misery from June 16 through July 23. Tickets cost $8 to $14. Show times are 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and 3 p.m. June 26 and July 10. Call 972-699-1130. --Paul Kix
Is there a more fabulously adaptable playwright than Shakespeare? Seriously, I've seen King Lear whipped by Third Reich-sympathizing daughters, Romeo and Juliet set in postapocalypse New York City and a lesbian version of Othello. And that's part of his genius. His plays are more flexible than a double-jointed cart mender (wait, isn't that a character in A Midsummer Night's Dream?). Shakespeare's plots and characters are universal and endlessly adaptable; the impetus for creativity is square-set on the production company. What pressure! When Shakespeare can be anything, how do you make it something memorable and meaningful? It's a conundrum the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas tackles every year and, in the 10 or so years I've been a spectator, they've resolved it beautifully. This season, they're producing two plays that fall outside repetitive mainstream productions--The Winter's Tale and Richard III. For The Winter's Tale, prepare yourself for magic and mythology in the Byzantine Empire. It's a focused version of the production that reduces the play to two hours. Richard III will hearken to a version of what Shakespeare himself might have produced--a major coup with almost all the characters represented and plot preserved. Bring your blanket and prepare to witness Elizabethan theater in its glory. Members can arrive at Samuell Grand Amphitheatre with picnic in hand at 6:45 p.m. Groups, special guests and advance ticket holders are welcome at 7 p.m., and general admission is at 7:30 p.m. for an 8:15 curtain. The program runs June 18 through July 23 at Samuell Grand Amphitheatre, 1500 Tenison Parkway. On Fridays and Saturdays, admission is $7 for adults, $4 for seniors and students or free for those 12 and under. Tuesdays through Thursdays and Sundays, admission is free (but a $7 donation is requested). Visit www.shakespearedallas.org. --Leah Shafer
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