Thursday, July 16, 2009

Weekend arts picks: July 16-19

The Musicians, by Betty Wilson.
(Photo by Katie Deits)

Art: Opening this Friday at the Clay, Glass, Metal, Stone Cooperative Gallery in Lake Worth will be an exhibit featuring the work of Norm Gitzen, Tracy Rosof-Peterson and Betty Wilson, as well the cooperative's 22 other artists.

West Palm Beach artist Betty Wilson creates colorful art in fused glass and clay. Wilson layers hand-cut transparent, opaque, and iridescent glass together with copper and then fires the design in her kiln at the Craft Gallery with temperatures ranging from 1,200 to 1,600 degrees F. Her ceramic pieces are also interesting and range in style from painted platters to vessels and tiles.
Couple, by Tracy Rosof-Peterson.

Tracy Rosof-Peterson, a native Floridian and Lake Worth resident, teaches at many venues from the Center for Creative Education to Craft Gallery classes, and also to demonstrating wheel-throwing at national ceramic conventions. She also teaches children how to design, create, and install tile murals that celebrate the many diverse cultures in our area. In her artwork, Rosof-Peterson explores in an abstract way the quest for human freedom and empowerment.

This sailfish sculpture is from Norman Gitzen's series Vanishing.

Norman Gitzen, a Wellington artist with an environmental mission, sculpts works in wood, stone, clay and metal. On display is his series Vanishing, which laments the disappearance of many animals, fish, and reptiles from the earth, along with other sculptures such as hearts of stone embraced in metal, and an intricately carved massive mantelpiece.

The exhibit opening is set for 6-10 p.m. Friday at the gallery on 605 Lake Ave. in downtown Lake Worth. The opening is free, and includes a wine tasting and hors d'oeuvres. For more information, call (561) 588-8334 or visit -- K. Deits

Wynn Harmon and Caroline Strong in Private Lives.

Theater: Most local companies usually trot out a musical for the summer months, but Palm Beach Dramaworks is deviating from that formula this season. By producing Noel Coward’s 1930 chestnut Private Lives, considered one of only a handful of perfect comedies, it stays true to its menu of classics while also saving a few bucks on the small-cast show. Resident director J. Barry Lewis stages the wit barrage, with Wynn Harmon and Caroline Strong as the divorced pair who can’t live with each other and can’t live without each other. Opens today and runs through Aug. 16. Call (561) 514-4042 for tickets. -- H. Erstein

Film: Want evidence that there is some hope for democracy in Afghanistan? See Afghan Star, the head-scratching documentary [reviewed here Tuesday] that shows how eager the Afghan people are to vote, as long as it is for the contestants in their versions of the TV phenomenon, American Idol. The difference is that over there the Taliban still influence society with a heavy hand, which means that singing and especially dancing are strongly frowned upon and the Star hopefuls have to endure assassination threats. Still, the public cannot get enough of the show, and they vote -- early and often -- on their cellphones, usually along ethnic lines. An eye-opener. At Emerging Cinemas in Lake Worth, (561) 296-9382. -- H. Erstein

Cellist Claudio Jaffe.
(Photo by Emilio Vasquez Jr.)

Music: The Brazilian-born cellist Claudio Jaffe is a familiar face to longtime area concertgoers, and this weekend he can be heard in one of the classic works of the cello repertoire, the Sonata in A minor, D. 821, of Franz Schubert. Originally written for an obsolete instrument called the arpeggione, which combined characteristics of the cello and the guitar (it had six strings and was tuned like a guitar, but was bowed), Schubert's sonata is full of the lovely melody and Romantic coloring for which this composer is justifiably famous. Jaffe, accompanied by pianist Yang Shen, also will perform a rondo by Dvorak, the Hungarian Rhapsody of the Austrian cellist-composer David Popper, and the three Fantasy Pieces of Robert Schumann. Jaffe's concert is set for 5 p.m. Sunday at the Steinway Gallery in Boca Raton. Tickets: $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Call 929-6633 or visit -- G. Stepanich

Florent Schmitt (1870-1958).

Chamber fest, part II: Beethoven is revered in our time for pieces such as the Ninth Symphony and the late string quartets, but in his own day it was the Septet (in E-flat, Op. 20), for clarinet, horn, bassoon, string trio, and bass that his contemporaries most cherished. It's a pleasant, tuneful early work (1799), and it takes center stage this weekend in the second series of Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival concerts. Also scheduled are the Octet in E-flat for winds and strings of Joseph Rheinberger and the Suite en Rocaille, Op. 84, for flute, violin, viola, cello and harp, written in 1934 by the Frenchman Florent Schmitt. 8 p.m. Friday at the Helen K. Persson Recital Hall on the campus of Palm Beach Atlantic University in West Palm Beach, 8 p.m. Saturday in the Eissey Campus Theatre at Palm Beach Community College in Palm Beach Gardens, and 2 p.m. Sunday in the Crest Theatre, Delray Beach. Tickets: $21. For more information, call 1-800-330-6874 or visit -- G. Stepanich

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