Thursday, December 18, 2008

Weekend Arts Picks

GEORGE PLATT LYNES (American, 1907–1955):
Jean Cocteau, 1934. Gelatin silver print, 10 x 8 in.
Gift of Baroness Jeane von Oppenheim
in honor of Charles Stainback, 2006.18.
© Estate of George Platt Lynes

Art: Only a couple of weeks are left to see two of the outstanding exhibitions at the Norton Museum of Art: "A Tradition Redefined: Chinese Paintings from the Chu-tsing Li Collection" and "Coming into Focus:
 Jeane von Oppenheim and Photography at the Norton, 1998-2008." Both exhibits end Jan. 4. The Chu-tsing Li Collection shows the dramatic evolution of Chinese painting from 1950-2000 and the effect of international artistic influences on the painters. The photography exhibition offers the opportunity to see some masters of the art world. You can also get some of your holiday shopping done while at the Norton, as its museum shop has unusual and artistic gifts, jewelry and books from around the world. The Norton Museum of Art is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday, and 1-5 p.m. Sunday. Admission to the special exhibition is $12 for adults and $5 for young adults ages 13-21— and free to members and children. For more information, visit, or call (561) 832-5196. — K. Deits

Opera: The Metropolitan Opera's very successful live HD broadcasts of opera continue Saturday with Thaïs, Jules Massenet's 1894 tale of the courtesan and the monk who tries to convert her but falls in love instead. With Renee Fleming as Thaïs and Thomas Hampson as Athanael; the conductor is Jesus Lopez-Cobos. Begins at noon Saturday, and can be seen in select local commercial theaters — Shadowood 16 in Boca Raton, Delray 18 in Delray Beach, and the Royal Palm Stadium 18 in Royal Palm Beach — or at the Society for the Four Arts in Palm Beach. Tickets: $22; for the Four Arts, call (561) 655-7226. — G. Stepanich

And don't forget: The season's last Messiah performances take place at 8 p.m. Friday in Miami at the Arsht Center, where professional chamber choir Seraphic Fire offers its version of the oratorio. And at 5 p.m. Sunday, Palm Beachers will gather at the Royal Poinciana Chapel as they have for years now to hear the Masterworks Chorus of the Palm Beaches under conductor Jack Jones do its annual presentation of Handel's 1742 masterwork. For Seraphic Fire, tickets range from $15 to $75. Call (305) 949-6722 or (866) 949-6722, or visit For Masterworks, tickets are $20 ($10 for students K-12). Call (561) 845-9696, or visit — G. Stepanich

FILM: There have been plenty of movies about dysfunctional families reuniting for the holidays, like the current so-so Hispanic-tinged effort from Hollywood, Nothing Like the Holidays, but few have been as artful as A Christmas Tale, director-writer Arnaud Desplechin’s Franch spin on the genre, starring Catherine Deneuve as a clan matriarch who happens to need a bone marrow transplant. At Lake Worth’s Emerging Cinema, beginning Friday. Call (561) 296-9382 for show times. — H. Erstein

Barbara Bradshaw and Dan Leonard
with director J. Barry Lewis in The Chairs.

THEATER: Eugene Ionesco wrote what he called “anti-plays” that avoided character development or plot logic, like his 1952 The Chairs, dusted off by Martin Crimp in a new, more comic adaptation that opens Friday at Palm Beach Dramaworks in West Palm Beach. Barbara Bradshaw and Dan Leonard star as an elderly couple dragging chairs onstage for the imminent arrival of a sage Orator. What it all means is bound to be the basis of a heated post-show discussion on your ride home. Tickets are $40-$42, available by calling (561) 514-4042. — H. Erstein

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