Steps in a new direction
When artists experiment with other genres, the results can be tragic. Take Eddie Murphy's "Party All the Time"--the unfortunate song that sends a shudder down our spines when we think of actor-singers. Or, two words: David Hasselhoff. Then there's Farrah Fawcett, who dazzled the art world by using her nude body as a paintbrush on canvas. And Paula Abdul, dancer and choreographer. Yeah, she belted out top-selling singles...thanks to the remixing genius of the engineers at Virgin Records. Let's face it: As a competitor rather than a judge on American Idol, pigs would have had to fly her to the second round. Britney Spears' movie Crossroads, Mariah Carey's Glitter. It's much too painful to go on. But there are times when bringing two different art media together works--for example, the collaboration between the Dance Council and the Nasher Sculpture Center, 2001 Flora St., called A Dallas Dance Festival Sampler. From 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, you can take in sculpture paired with dance performances by the city's top dance companies at the Nasher (starting at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 7:15 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.). Admission is free from 10 a.m. until noon and $5 to $10 after. Call 214-219-2290. --Stephanie Morris
Kids don't bop
As kids, we had no idea what "the chicks'll cream" meant when we sang along to "Greased Lightning" from Grease soundtrack. Then we heard it 20 years later, which was enough to vow to feed our kids only classical music. Sorry, no Kidz Bop versions of Green Day or Franz Ferdinand for you. Burgeoning baby Beethovens--and skittish parents--can enjoy Anne Marie Nelson's Music for Little Ears, a program of classical music performance, movement exercises and stories, at 10 a.m. September 7 at the Highland Hills Branch Library, 3624 Simpson-Stuart Road. Admission is free. Call 214-670-0987. --Shannon Sutlief
Anglophiles unite! No longer hide your love for the United Kingdom but band together in support of the British humour that makes Her Majesty's domain so bloody appealing, sans the 10-hour airplane ride. Theatre Britain's Lettice & Lovage by Peter Shaffer brings the "best of British" playwriting to the Trinity River Arts Center, 2600 N. Stemmons Freeway, Thursdays through Sundays, from September 1 through September 18. It's the story of an eccentric tour guide who befriends an uptight Preservation Trust official. Hijinks ensue. Tickets are $12 to $15. Call 972-490-4202. --Andrea Grimes
Suds and Studs
Desperate housewives everywhere appreciate the glory days of General Hospital when Ned and Lois were the most rocking couple in Port Charles. Ned's propensity for leather pants and low-slung guitars made middle-aged women feel young again--or at least gave them the opportunity to think about men sporting the kind of britches that can only be worn without even the tightest of tightie-whities; a comforting thought when your afternoons are spent folding the freshly laundered, faded BVDs of your inattentive, workaholic husband whose meaningless position in middle management has doomed you to a lifetime of suburban ennui. But this weekend's laundry will have to wait because the leather-pantsed one himself will be performing Saturday afternoon with his band at Dick's Last Resort in the West End at the intersection of North Lamar and Houston streets. Wally Kurth, aka Ned, will join his Kurth and Taylor Band in a benefit show for Bryan's House, a care facility for children affected by HIV/AIDS. The guys go on at 1 p.m. Post-show entertainment includes an auction and appearances by GH's Ignacio Serricchio and Adrienne Leon. Tickets are $35, or $75 for VIP meet-and-greet access. Call 214-747-0001. --Andrea Grimes
Friedrich Nietzsche said that life is a struggle you endure while waiting to die. Now there's a chap who could use a lomi-lomi massage and a mai tai. But then Nietzsche didn't live in an era with a relaxation mantra like we do. Over the last 25 years, we've developed an entire industry dedicated to loosening up the stressed-out masses. Guided meditation, aromatherapy, those dorky little waterfalls for office cubes--they're all designed to help us unwind and kick back. This Labor Day, Dallas' most relaxing radio station (and I don't mean The Oasis) is presenting a free sunset concert at the Dallas Arboretum. WRR Classical 101.1 and the Dallas Wind Symphony are pairing up Monday for Picnic in the Park, a two-hour event at the Martin Rutchik Concert Stage in the arboretum. The symphony will present patriotic pieces, renditions of songs by groups such as Earth, Wind & Fire and Chicago and music from the movie The Incredibles. Bring a picnic basket, blanket and cooler, and lounge on the lawn while WRR host Gabrielle West sings "The Star-Spangled Banner." The evening will also have face painting, food vendors and a registration for a chance to win two tickets on Lufthansa. It's an opportunity to leave your Xanax prescription and yoga mat at home and enjoy a little hard-earned R&R. The concert will be held Monday at the Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Road. Admission to the arboretum is free after 5:30 p.m., and events start at 6 p.m. The concert will begin at 7 p.m. Off-site parking is available at the YMCA, 7305 Gaston Ave., with shuttles beginning at 5 p.m. Call 214-515-6500. --Leah Shafer
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