A classy entertainment


Western High School will be the scene of A Class Act III on Saturday. Young Audiences of Maryland is having its fund-raiser there, to honor Sue Hess, president of Maryland Citizens for the Arts.

Co-chairs Sharon Goldstein and Donna Hamilton are promising an evening to remember -- entertainment by professional Young Audiences artists, Peabody Ragtime Ensemble music, wines and light fare from the Brass Elephant. For tickets, which are $60, call (410) 837-7577.


Students at the Baltimore School for the Arts are working on a new production of Tchaikovsky's magical ballet "The Nutcracker" for the holiday season. Choreographer Lisa deRibere, a former dancer with the New York City Ballet and the American Ballet Company, choreographs for major dance companies worldwide and is working with the students during a six-week residency at the school.

Students Jessica Miller, Shelly McMillian and Brad Parquette will dance in the production. They'll be joined by Baltimore adults Marsha Becker, school board member; Kurt Decker, school board member; Shirley Selis; and Stewart Rosenberg and Ray Michener.

Performance dates are Dec. 10, 11, 12, 17, 18 and 19. Tickets are $10 for adults and $6 for students and seniors. Call (410) 347-1418 for reservations and show times.


The first feature film to showcase the world's most beloved ballet, "The Nutcracker," opened at area theaters Wednesday. Listen carefully when you see the movie, because the beautiful music for the production is performed by the New York City Ballet Orchestra and conducted by BSO maestro David Zinman . . .


Congratulations to Dr. Melvin Rapelyea and his professional staff at Howard County General for a job well-done. More than 500 people enjoyed his "It's Showtime . . . A Night of Fantasy," starring LeMasquerade, and in the process raised $30,000 for the hospital's oncology program.


If you haven't caught the Christmas spirit yet, I have a suggestion. Next weekend from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Christmas at Mount Clare and the Stable will be celebrated. Docents in Colonial costumes will guide guests through the house, which has been decorated with holly, magnolia, boxwood and other greens used in Colonial times. (Mount Clare, Baltimore's only pre-Revolutionary War mansion, was built in 1760 as the home of Charles Carroll.)

The stable will be filled with homemade items for sale: from jams and jellies to wreaths and table arrangements. On Sunday, the B&O; railroad will be offering train rides back and forth between Carroll Park and the original Mount Clare depot. The trains cost $2 a person. Admission for Mount Clare is $4 for adults; 50 cents for children ages 5-12. Call (410) 837-3262.


Another close-by excursion is a visit to the historic waterfront village of St. Michaels on Maryland's Eastern Shore for the Christmas in St. Michaels festivities, Dec. 11 and 12.

The whole community gets into the spirit of an old-fashioned Christmas by decorating homes and shops with candles, white lights and traditional greenery. There's a parade, Santa Claus breakfast, tour of homes, caroling, concerts, a lighted boat parade, model trains, woodcarvers and more. Tickets are needed for some events; call (410) 745-5909.


Baltimore was prominently represented when the Southern Repertory Theater of New Orleans made its first European appearance last Friday night with a performance of Rosary O'Neill's play "Solitaire."

It was a private showing at the Sorbonne University in Paris, and was part of a cultural exchange between the theater departments of Loyola University in New Orleans and the Sorbonne.

Directing and acting in the show is Baltimore County native Joe Warfield, who has been with Southern Rep for six years as an actor, director and teacher. Joe, a graduate of Towson High School and the University of Maryland, has done well in the theater world. His Broadway credits include "Baby," "110 in the Shade," "Jimmy Shine" and "Little Mary Sunshine." Plus, he can be seen in the Jean Claude Van Damme film "Hard Target" and in "Skip-Tracer," starring Stacy Keach.

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