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Home / Articles / · Archive / Arts & Entertainment /  The Essentials | City Weekly's Entertainment Picks November 13-19
Arts & Entertainment

The Essentials | City Weekly's Entertainment Picks November 13-19

Posted // November 12,2008 -
nTHEATER

nBy Scott Renshaw
nInspired stage farce can be among the most gaspingly hilarious of live theater experiences; insufferable stage farce turns the presumed hilarity of all the madcap, double-entendre-laden dashing about into something almost smug. Michael Frayn’s NOISES OFF brilliantly accomplished the first—and skewered the latter—by making a stage farce about the production of a stage farce.
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Pioneer Theatre Company turns in a terrific interpretation of Frayn’s play, which follows a British company from final dress rehearsal through the bitter end of the farce Nothing On. Doors a-plenty slam in the play-within-the-play, but behind the scenes the dynamics are complicated by various romantic couplings and de-couplings, including director Lloyd Dallas (Richmond Hoxie) not being able to keep it in his pants with either spaced-out ingénue Brooke (Sarah Dandridge) or his stage manager, Poppy (Cheryl Gaysunas).

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The cast also showcases local comic stalwarts including Anne Stewart Mark and Max Robinson. Charles Morey’s direction—particularly in the magnificently chaotic backstage second act—builds terrific comic momentum. But the production truly becomes a must-see thanks to the performance by Dandridge (pictured, rear). There are few truer tests of a good actor than playing a bad actor, and Dandridge dazzles both when she’s rattling through vapid line readings and when she’s at the edge of the stage stretching into contortionist poses. Paired with Matthew Schenck as the incapable-of-completing-a-sentence leading man Garry, Dandridge turns Noises Off into a farce to be reckoned with.

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Noises Off @ Salt Lake Acting Company, 300 S. 1400 East, 581-6961, through Nov. 15. PioneerTheatre.org

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VISUAL ARTS
nBy Ehren Clark
nBoldly inaugurating its new ongoing exhibition Contemporary Trends in Video Art, Salt Lake Art Center showcases the work of Miranda July, best known for her film Sundance film Me and You and Everyone We Know GETTING STRONGER EVERY DAY is a powerful opener, introducing key aspects of contemporary video art. The short, like many, uses time but not necessarily narrative, and it contrasts elements to convey meaning.

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/July’s work balances fantasy and reality, innocence and corruption. An anonymous man tells of an anonymous boy, molested over the course of eight years. A young girl is seen alone, lost in her subjective world of make-believe, playing with amorphous objects in mid-air. The man is seen, but not the molester; the girl is seen, but not the boy who is the subject of the narration. Emptiness evokes an intense pathos for the boy through the on-screen girl. And although the man is not the perpetrator, he becomes a substitute object of repulsion.

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The semi-abstract short may disturb viewers, but it serves as a good introduction to this video-art film festival—which in coming months will feature Steve Reinke, Ximena Cuevas and Paul McCarthy—as July incites intense emotion through strong contemporary devices. There is no sense of time or space, simply an eerie otherworldliness. It is well crafted but not pretty, leaving the viewer with something video art does especially well: an open-ended dialogue with more questions than there are answers.

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Miranda July: Getting Stronger Every Day @ Salt Lake City Art Center, 20 S. West Temple, 328-4201, through Nov. 29. SLArtcenter.org

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DANCE
nBy Jacob Stringer
nThe fact that such renowned dancers as Mark Morris, Daniel Ezralow and Doug Varone have all graced the stage with the New York City-based LAR LUBOVITCH DANCE COMPANY
(LLDC) says a ton. The fact that the company is about to embark on a much-hyped 40th anniversary tour simply speaks volumes.

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/Longevity in the dance world can be rather difficult to attain. Remaining relevant—morphing styles and subject matter with the time in order to stay germane—can be complicated, and all too often results in diminishing returns. As one of America’s premier choreographers, Lubovitch not only has remained extremely busy over the past 40 years, he seems to be getting better with age. Along with the unique musicality and fluidity of his movement style—steeped in technical modern traditions—it is also his deeply humanistic thematic gestures that have helped to define the company’s distinctive trajectory, having choreographed more than 100 individual pieces and toured the globe extensively.

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For this 40th anniversary tour, LLDC has compiled a carefully crafted mix of innovative works, both classic and contemporary. On the bill for the one-night-only performance here in Salt Lake City will be the award-winning Men’s Stories: A Concerto in Ruins (2000) sitting side by side with a couple of newer pieces, including 2008’s Jangle: Four Hungarian DancesDvorak Serenade. and 2007’s

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Lar Lubovitch Dance Company @ Kingsbury Hall, 1395 E. Presidents Circle, 581-7100, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 7:30 p.m. KingTix.com

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here&now Other New Happenings This Week
nA FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM Ancient Rome becomes a musical “Comedy Tonight.” Westminster College Jewett Center, 1840 S. 1300 East, 832-2457, Nov. 13-22, WestminsterCollege.edu/CampusEvents

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PETER MATTHIESSEN & SUBHANKAR BANERJEE A discussion of issues relating to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge with the two authors. Main Library Auditorium, 210 E. 400 South, 524-8200, Nov. 13, 7 p.m. SLCPL.org

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WHERE WERE YOU? The Babcock Performing Readers revisit the emotions surrounding John F. Kennedy’s assassination for a one-night-only performance. University of Utah Olpin Union Building, 200 Central Campus Dr., Nov. 13, 7:30 p.m., free admission. BabcockReaders.com

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SIX YEARS Salt Lake Acting Company presents Sharr White’s drama about the reunion between a long-missing World War II soldier and his wife. Salt Lake Acting Company, 168 W. 500 North, 363-0526, Nov. 14–Dec. 7. SaltLakeActingCompany.org

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ROCKY MOUNTAIN ART & ANTIQUES SHOW Everything from the old masters to contemporary work. Salt Palace Convention Center, 100 S. West Temple, 888-988-2787, Nov. 14-16, RMArtShow.com

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DISNEY ON ICE: 100 YEARS OF MAGIC Not exactly sure what it’s the centennial of, but expect skate-tacular productions to Disney tunes. EnergySolutions Arena, 301 W. South Temple, 325-SEAT, Nov. 12-16, 2:30 p.m. DisneyOnIce.com

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JAMIE KENNEDY From Scream to The Jamie Kennedy Experiment to Son of the Mask to Ogden. A circuitous comedy career, indeed. Wiseguys Comedy Café, 269 25th St., Ogden, 801-622-5588, Nov. 15, 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. WiseguysComedy.com

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JEWISH ARTS FESTIVAL Music, artists and—of course—food celebrating Salt Lake City’s Jewish community. Jewish Community Center, 2 N. Medical Dr., 581-0098, Nov. 15-16, SLCJCC.org

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SEAN CONNELLY The author of The Book of Totally Irresponsible Science introduces fun experiments for kids. The King’s English Bookshop, 1511 S. 1500 East, 484-9100, Nov. 19, 7 p.m. KingsEnglish.Booksense.com tttt

 
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