Events for the week
Band-Dude Karaoke: The concept behind karaoke is that non-musicians--or at least non-professional musicians--are forced to display musical talents they may or may not have. What people never consider is that the whole setup of karaoke is so awkward as to render even the most experienced singer stranded. Club Clearview understands this, and spreads the embarrassment of riches by enlisting popular local bands to appear for karaoke workouts. Pimpadelic and Strap are among 10 bands who will bare their behinds and put them on the line (musically speaking, of course) with this show. The evening lasts from 9 p.m. to midnight, and several of the participating bands will then play regular sets until 2 a.m. at Club Clearview, 2803 Main. For information call (214) 939-0224.
Heels & Nobs Winter Dance and Theatre Show: The Heels & Nobs Dance and Theatre Collective presents its appropriately titled Heels & Nobs Winter Dance and Theatre Show for the benefit of those whose attention spans have been permanently damaged by adolescent MTV consumption. Alfred Hitchcock once said that a movie should not exceed the endurance of the human bladder, and we say that more theater artists should take this into account. Directors Tim McCanna and Shannon Slaton and choreographers Karen Bower Robinson and Doug Hopkins have prepared a series of dance and musical performances long on enthusiasm and short on time, including Robinson's modern dance performance Las Somnambulas; three dance pieces from Doug Hopkins; Shannon Slaton's original short plays Parasitosis and The Blind Date; and a 30-minute musical by Tim McCanna. Performances happen January 23-25 at 8 p.m. at Theatre on Elm Street, 3202 Elm. Tickets are $10-$12. Call (214) 630-7722.
Auditions for Stupid Pet and Human Tricks: It's beginning to dawn on the rest of America what a small minority has been carping about for years: David Letterman is a lousy interviewer, an unfunny comic, and one embittered S.O.B. who's running on the fumes of a frat-boy irony that was pretty lame even when he started out with a full tank. He is reaching out across America to find new victims for his neo-Gong Show shtick known as "Stupid Pet and Human Tricks." Now that he's canvassed San Francisco, Philadelphia, Boston, and Chicago, he's coming to the Dallas-Fort Worth area to audition bipeds and quadrupeds. The only stipulation is that neither can be treated inhumanely during the course of the trick. This suggests that your cat-juggling skills will not be appreciated at audition time. Auditions happen daily January 24-26 at the offices of KTVT-Channel 11, 2777 Stemmons. For an audition time call (214) 787-1001.
Kristi Yamaguchi, Scott Hamilton, and Paul Wylie: What's the next step for athletes after winning Olympic medals and world-class championships? Sit back and let the corporations of the world shower you with juicy endorsements. Discover, the financial services card, has rounded up a hogshead of ice skaters for their Stars On Ice tour, with Kristi Yamaguchi, Scott Hamilton, and Paul Wylie headlining a performance team that includes Jayne Torvill, Christopher Dean, Radka Kovarikova, Rene Novotny, and Jill Trenary. A portion of every ticket sold benefits the Make-A-Wish Foundation, an organization that grants wishes to kids with life-threatening illnesses. The event happens at 8 p.m. at Reunion Arena, 111 Sports. For ticket info call (214) 373-8000.
Dinosaur: Since some of us nursed an intense Godzilla fascination as kids, we're not surprised that so many young ones begged their parents to take them to Jurassic Park (and will do so again for this summer's sequel, The Lost World)--even though some scary scenes in that film took them back to the B.P.T. (Before Potty Training) era. Every little kid--male and female--likes to identify with creatures even more gigantic and ferocious than their parents. Dallas Children's Theater is betting on this impulse with its original production of James De Vita's Dinosaur. Sadly, there will be no screaming lawyers plucked off toilet seats and torn to pieces in this one--it is a much sweeter tale of a mother and daughter who rediscover their relationship while discovering dinosaurs. Performances happen Friday, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 1:30 p.m.; and Sunday, 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. at the El Centro College Theater, Main and Market.
Fine Arts Chamber Players: The fourth Saturday Performance Series of the Fine Arts Chamber Players continues with a show boasting instrumentalists from the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, as well as University of North Texas faculty member Pamela Paul. These guests have come to collaborate with the Chamber players on Schubert's Quintet for Piano and Strings in A Major, D667, "The Trout." Adding his two cents is Southern Methodist University professor of voice Robert Barefield, who will lend his pipes to Schubert's piece and then explain, no doubt in a professorly way, exactly how "The Trout" fits into the instrumental chamber canon. The afternoon happens at 3 p.m. in the Horchow Auditorium of the Dallas Museum of Art, 1717 N. Harwood. Admission is free. Call (214) 520-2219.
I.D. Day: The Dallas Museum of Natural History offers some of its top experts to the public in an open house that answers the question: "Does this weird-looking old thing I've found have any anthropological-archaeological value?" (Please note: your great-grandfather is not fodder for examination by the experts.) A panel of Museum curators and Museum-associated -ologists have gathered to tell people exactly what that cool rock, natural imprint, or bug shell is (the museum has dubbed these sundry items Unidentified Natural History Objects). Additionally, there will be workshops scheduled for 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. to allow folks to tell if the plant or animal that has just pricked them is the deadliest of its variety. The day lasts from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Dallas Museum of Natural History in Fair Park. Tickets are $2.50-$4. Call (214) 421-3466.
Lesbian Town Hall Meeting: Considering the Dallas Gay and Lesbian Alliance refused to put the word "lesbian" in its title until the organization's hand was forced in the '90s, it's no surprise that many of the female staffers of that organization continue to feel underrepresented or even ignored, and believe that a disproportionate concentration of services has been directed toward gay men. In response, a group of women have organized a Lesbian Town Hall meeting to raise concerns and develop a common plan of action. The Town Hall is loosely structured, confidential, and will only admit women. Since it gives new meaning to the phrase "bitch-fest," all we can say is: You go, girls! The Town Hall meeting happens 3-5 p.m. at the Gay and Lesbian Community Center, 2701 Reagan at Brown. It's free. Call (214) 528-9254.
David Dorfman: In a performance world where everyone wants to be both diverse and confrontational, New York-based modern dancer David Dorfman says, Bring on the multi-media elements, but let's persuade through comedy and gentle exploration. He was trained in various athletic disciplines as well as in musical instruments before he ever attempted dance. Now he's combined all three in a show that, while not in-your-face, does address some thorny cultural issues. The performance happens at 8 p.m. in the Margo Jones Performance Hall, Oakland Avenue, on the campus of Texas Women's University, Denton. Tickets are $4-$10, but free for TWU and UNT students with valid student I.D. Call (817) 565-2611.
Buchanan's Antique and Collector's Market: While there probably won't be much in the way of antiques a la high-backed chairs with peculiar-shaped legs named after dead royalty, Buchanan's Antique and Collector's Market offers the kind of "antiques" and "collectibles" that are both user- and pocketbook-friendly. Dealers from across the United States drag in 83,000 square feet of pretty old things, baseball cards, hand-made quilts, sports memorabilia, out-of-print books, furniture, china, and other stuff that fits under that gigantic category known as "etc." The event happens Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., at the Automobile Building at Fair Park. Admission is $2 for adults; children under 12 get in free. Call (214) 421-9600.
Anne Frank: No matter how often the story of the Holocaust is retold, no matter how many human faces are put on the grim statistics, it seems the lesson of that horror is never learned (Bosnia and Rwanda, take a bow). Maybe children educated in the consequences of prejudice will begin the world anew as they reach adulthood. FamiliArts, the Children's Performing Arts Series of the Jewish Community Center, and the Holocaust Memorial Center have transformed the story of Anne Frank into a theater and video performance piece titled Through the Eyes of a Friend, based on real remembrances of people who knew Frank and her family. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center of Dallas, 7900 Northaven Rd. Tickets are $6-$7. Call (214) 739-2737.
Thomas Tulis: Photographs Do Not Bend presents a one-man show by a nationally acclaimed photographer whose work has combined elements of documentary and satire to present a unique vision of the American South. Tennessee native Thomas Tulis, who has been featured at New York's Museum of Modern Art and the Brooklyn Museum, has been fascinated since the late '80s with distinctly American phenomena in the South--military bases, suburban neighborhoods, class friction, and city development. Lately, Tulis has turned his attention away from class and geography toward satirizing the so-called "heroin chic" of fashion photography. Tulis has devised several highly personal lighting techniques to lend each photograph an edgy, surrealistic mood, although there's no studio manipulation of the image involved. An opening reception for his Dallas one-man show happens January 24, 6-9 p.m. The show runs through March 1 at Photographs Do Not Bend, 3115 Routh St. Call (214) 969-1852.
Kathy Vargas: Texas photographer Kathy Vargas considers herself a troublemaker--one who's unabashedly left-wing in her cultural and sexual politics. Yet a perusal of her remarkable photos suggests she is more a mythologizer of troublesome realities. As part of its "Mosaic" series, the Dallas Visual Art Center presents a one-woman show of the multi-layered pictures Vargas, who last year received an National Endowment for the Arts grant in photography, has amassed over the years. Her subject is at once autobiographical and cultural, mixing dark-tinged images of herself with iconography that is race- and gender-specific but whose broad symbolism suggests she's a staunch humanist over and above everything else. The show opens with a reception January 24, 6:30-8:30 p.m., at the Dallas Visual Art Center, 2917 Swiss Avenue. Call (214) 821-2522.
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