Thursday, January 15, 2009

Weekend arts picks: Jan. 16-18

Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson
in Last Chance Harvey.

THEATER: The rocky economy has hit New Vista Theatre hard. With the loss of corporate and private underwriting, the company has had to scrub its much-anticipated production of the Tony Award-winning musical, The Producers. In its place, artistic director Avi Hoffman will unveil a new follow-up to his signature solo show Too Jewish?, called Still Jewish After All These Years! A Life in the Theatre. Performances begin this weekend and run through Feb. 8. Call (888) 284-4633 for tickets. — H. Erstein

FILM: Most films these days are geared to teenagers, but a gentle little romantic comedy called Last Chance Harvey, about two middle-aged, unattached lost souls who meet by chance in London, dares to go upstream against the youth market audience demographic. The movie would not be much without its two stars, Oscar winners Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson, who demonstrate how the right performer chemistry can elevate material to something entertaining and endearing. Opens Friday at area theaters. — H. Erstein

Neal Conan of National Public Radio.

Neal Conan and Ensemble Galilei: An interesting multimedia event comes to the Society for the Four Arts on Palm Beach this Sunday when National Public Radio correspondent Neal Conan narrates First Person: Stories From the Edge of the World, joined by Ensemble Galilei. Conan will read dispatches from writers on exploratory journeys -- Charles Darwin, Ibn Battuta, George Mallory and others -- accompanied by photo
s from the National Geographic Society and music from the ensemble. The presentation starts at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Four Arts, and costs $10. Call 655-7226 for tickets or more information. -- G. Stepanich

Naples Philharmonic Orchestra: Our friends on Florida's Southwest Coast have something the Florida Philharmonic never had: A beautiful performing arts center to call their own. On Sunday, Stuart Malina directs the 49-member Naples Philharmonic in music by Beethoven (Symphony No. 2 in D, Op. 36), von Weber (the overture to Die Freischutz), and the Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16, of Edvard Grieg. Pianist Jodie DeSalvo solos. 8 pm Sunday at the Kravis Center. Tickets range from $25-$85, and can be had by calling 832-7469 or visiting
-- G. Stepanich

A scene from Ballet Gamonet's Recitations.
(photo by Mitchell Zachs)

Ballet Gamonet: Jimmy Gamonet de los Heros' Miami company brings selections from its programs to two shows at the Duncan Theatre on the campus of Palm Beach Community College in Lake Worth. On the program are I Never Saw Another Butterfly (Gamonet/Lee/Gorecki); Recitations (Gamonet/Espinosa); Nous Sommes (Gamonet/Cantaloube) and Les Changes (Gamonet/percussion collage). 8 pm Friday and Saturday. Tickets: $29-$35. Call 868-3315. -- G. Stepanich

The wild and soulful Janis Joplin sings
her heart out in a photograph by Robert Altman.

Palm Beach Photographic Centre: Photographers and photography lovers should be aware that FOTOfusion starts in two weeks. There is still time to register for classes at the internationally known event, one of the largest photography-oriented events of its kind in the United States. Top-level photographers (some are Pulitzer Prize winners), authors and educators lecture and teach at FOTOfusion.

A master lecture series includes The Rolling Stone Sixties with Robert Altman and Two Original Views of The 2008 Olympics with Robert Pledge. FOTOfusion begins at the Palm Beach Photographic Centre in Delray Beach Jan. 27 and runs through Jan. 31. For more information and a full schedule of classes, workshops, lectures and seminars, go to or call 561-276-9797. — K. Deits

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