Toe to Toe

"Dance is just like life," Ann Williams once told me. "It's an educational process." The founder/artistic director of Dallas Black Dance Theatre put her toe shoes where her mouth was three years ago and created a second string of young, talented dancers and emerging choreographers who could learn, side by side, with the seasoned professionals at DBDT. Williams' most-likely-to-succeed make up DBDTII, the second company, under the direction of Chantal Adams and Edmond Giles. "We're educating and developing these young artists for careers as professional dancers by giving them exposure to master teachers and choreographers," Williams says, "and by providing opportunities to perform throughout the area." Every year since its inception, DBDTII has closed its season with an all-out Spring Concert, which this Saturday night highlights fresh footwork and choreography by former Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater lead dancer Christopher Huggins. Williams modeled DBDT on Ailey's groundbreaking company. She met Ailey in 1968 at Bishop College, where she founded the dance department. Williams' tutelage shows in much of DBDTII's May 24 concert, notably in the premiere of Adams' "Summertime." In addition to running the second company, Adams still dances for DBDT. Another alumna, Carla Stribling, currently on the dance faculty at Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, directs the high school's African Dance Ensemble. The ensemble will perform during the concert. "When you leave our performance, you will have seen artistically very good dancers, plus you will have seen dance that you as an audience participant can identify with," Williams says. The Spring Concert starts at 7 p.m. at Booker T., 2501 Flora St. Tickets are $10 at the door; call 214-871-2390. --Annabelle Massey Helber

Jazz Hands
We and Spyro Gyra have a couple of things in common. We both were created in 1975, plus we have some experience with jazz. Well, that second one is kind of a stretch. While Spyro Gyra has been called a contemporary jazz legend, the highlight of our career was a solo saxophone performance of Kenny G's "Silhouette" in high school jazz band. We didn't even make the high F. But that's nothing compared with a certain fifth-grade piano recital...yeah, we're much better at listening to music. Spyro Gyra performs May 25 at the Majestic Theatre, 1925 Elm St. The show starts at 8 p.m., and tickets are $28 to $35.50. Call 817-468-4149 or visit --Rhonda Reinhart

Harp on It
Paul Harrington Band goes to the Market

The tragedy of childhood piano lessons is that the piano is not, in general, a traveling instrument. You may play a delightful rendition of "Heart & Soul," but let's see you haul that baby grand to summer camp. While other kids thrill talent-night audiences with guitar riffs and flute solos, your ivories will remain at home, untickled. As you weep into your bandanna, you may really wish that you, like Paul Harrington, had taken up the harmonica. This harp wizard has been blowing and sucking (on his harmonica) for more than 40 years and has recorded with a variety of artists and producers. And if you're working on compensating for years of summer-camp rejection, he even teaches lessons. Catch the Paul Harrington Band at Central Market, 5750 E. Lovers Lane, on Friday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Call 214-234-7000. --Michelle Martinez

It's All That Jazz
Sounds of the Count

If there's one thing we hold close to the heart, it's jazz. And when we think of '30s jazz, the "Basie Swing" sways through our thoughts, revolving around unique piano chops and a light, relaxed rhythm section. And, of course, it was created and performed by one of the most significant bandleaders of his time, Count Basie. He was all that jazz, with 17 Grammys under his belt and an orchestra that's performed all over the world. The band still continues, even after his death, under the leadership of Grover Mitchell. The Dallas Symphony Orchestra closes its 2002-2003 Audi Pop Series with performances by the celebrated Count Basie Orchestra. The concerts are held May 23 through May 25 at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, 3201 Flora St. Tickets may be purchased at the box office or by visiting and range from $15 to $95. Senior citizens receive a 20 percent discount. Call 214-692-0203. --Desirée Henry

Buggin' Out
Guitar bad-ass Buddy "Bugs" Henderson has come a long way since his teen-age days of sneaking out of his house in Tyler to catch live country and blues shows. Now in his late 50s, he's built a reputation for himself as a master eclectic bluesman. He's had his own band, Bugs Henderson & the Shuffle Kings, for close to 30 years. He also has his own kids to keep from sneaking out of the house now. Get down with Bugs Henderson & the Shuffle Kings on Friday at Bass Hall Complex's McNair Studio, 301 E. Fifth St., Fort Worth. The show starts at 9 p.m. Call 817-212-4280 or check out for more information. --Cheryl Smith

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