Rigby's off to Neverland
"Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan," the promotional materials proclaim. Not "as" or "plays" but "is." Which really makes us wonder if Rigby, former Olympic gymnast, lives the existence of Peter Pan in which she rolls out of her hammock every morning, crows loudly and puts on her pointed green hat to start her day as a developmentally stunted young boy. Which brings us to the second query: How is it that a prepubescent boy is best played by an adult woman? Mary Martin, Sandy Duncan and now Cathy Rigby have defined the role of the boy who would never grow up more than any male child who has ever been cast. We'll be pleased when the gender-bending extends to casting a middle-aged man as Wendy and portraying Hook as a flamboyant transvestite. But if you can be happy with the current incarnation starring Rigby, Howard McGillin as Hook and Elisa Sagardia as Wendy, go see Peter Pan as it opens the 2005 season of Dallas Summer Musicals on May 24 and runs Tuesdays through Sundays until June 5 at the Music Hall at Fair Park, 909 First Ave. Show time is 8 p.m. with matinees at 2 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and June 2. Tickets are $11 to $65. Call 214-631-ARTS. --Michelle Martinez
Allison Moore, we need to talk. You, like Rushmore's Max Fischer, can claim to have already written a hit play (Eighteen, a smash at Kitchen Dog Theater). You follow that with what will likely be another standout, Hazard County, which headlines KDT's 7th Annual New Works Festival. But this time you went too far. The notes claim it is "interspersed with recollections of The Dukes of Hazzard." Oh, no, you dih-n't! That's our turf. Hazard County is at Kitchen Dog from May 20 through June 18. Call 214-953-1055 for tickets. --Zac Crain
In 2003 a U.S. unit headed into battle in Iraq to the strains of Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries," a la Apocalypse Now, with no measurable effect except for a brief media frenzy. But what if instead of classical music, they had used the Grease soundtrack? It would send all the right messages: We're relentlessly happy. We're unstoppably catchy. And we will never, ever die. Take Frankie Avalon, for example. He already seemed old in the 1978 movie, but he's still touring with Grease, still playing the role of Teen Angel. The guy's a machine--even if there's arthritis medication in his line of canned-tan products. Avalon and Grease come to the Eisemann Center in Richardson, Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m. Tickets are $45.50 to $49.50. Call 972-744-4650 or visit www.theaterleague.com. --Rick Kennedy
Dance has always been seen as a beautiful, effortless series of body movements. In reality, it is athletic and emotionally demanding in addition to being a gorgeous art form--at least for good dancers. Bhakti (an expression of devotion) is an Indian classical dance that aims to bring the audience, as well as the dancers, to an elevated state--something far more involved than just performing and watching. Dancer Vasantha Krishnan (who established Montreal's Nrithyalaya Foundation in 1976 to further Indian classical dance and music) and her daughters Sudha and Kala (a Dallas resident) bring that emotional, spiritual bhakti to Big D with Shakti: Many Faces of the Mother Goddess. The mother-daughter trifecta will dance to music by a live orchestra at the Plaza Theater, 521 W. State St. in Garland, on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Proceeds from tickets ($20, $50 and $100) benefit Jonathan's Place and the International Association for Human Values. Call 214-350-3741. --Merritt Martin
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