THE PLAY'S THE THING
IN 'HAMLET' UPDATE
There's high concept Shakespeare.
And then there's Table 8's new production of "Hamlet," which opens a three-weekend run tonight at the Onyx Theatre.
Director Troy Heard describes it as "a lo-fi slicing to the bone" of William Shakespeare's classic tragedy, which will be performed in contemporary dress.
Despite "Hamlet's" status as "a treasure trove of philosophy," Heard notes, "if you dig deep beneath the skin you find a really gripping dysfunctional family horror story. That's the one I'm interested in telling: as though Shakespeare were alive today and writing an HBO series."
Performances are scheduled at 8 p.m. today through Sunday at the Onyx, in Commercial Center at 953 E. Sahara Ave. Performances continue at 8 p.m. Sept. 14-16 and Sept. 21-23. Tickets are $15 and are available at the door, by phone (732-7225) or online at www.onyxtheatre.com.
REUNITE FOR CONCERT
Song-and-dance veterans Gary Oakes and Lou Garcia, whose credits stretch from Broadway to the Strip, team up Sunday afternoon for a concert featuring everything from pop to country to - what else? - show tunes.
Oakes' Broadway credits range from "The Boys From Syracuse" to "1776," while Garcia was featured in "Zorba" and "Illya Darling." Both took the stage at the former MGM Grand (now Bally's) in "Hallelujah Hollywood" and have performed in nightclubs and aboard cruise ships.
The concert, presented by the Performing Arts Society of Nevada, is at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Winchester Cultural Center, 3130 McLeod Drive. Tickets are $15 in advance and $18 at the door; to purchase tickets or obtain more information, call 658-6741.
LET THE SUN SHINE IN
WITH 'HAIR' HAPPENING
The Age of Aquarius casts a spell over tonight's First Friday when a tribe of Las Vegas rock and theater performers unite for a special free concert performance of "Hair."
The 90-minute version of 1968's "American Tribal Love-Rock Musical" represents "a hybrid of styles," according to Andrew Wright, who's overseeing the staging with Cirque du Soleil colleague Roger Butterly as a benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
"The storylines and the songs are there," explains Wright, who likens the hippie-era show to "a Woodstock concert," with "a very retro feel." Performers will interact with audience members, passing out love beads and leading singalongs to such "Hair" hits as "Aquarius," "Good Morning Starshine," "Let the Sun Shine In," "Easy to Be Hard" and the title song.
Free performances will be staged at 6 and 9 tonight at the Lyon's Den Stage (Third Street and Imperial Avenue) as part of the downtown Arts District's monthly First Friday celebration, which is scheduled from 6 to 11 p.m.
Also on Third (between Imperial and Colorado avenues), food trucks serve up a variety of flavors, while activities at the Arts District hub (Casino Center Boulevard and Colorado Avenue) range from exercise classes to Syn Shop's interactive "hackerspace" and Kids Zone performances by the S.I.N.G. Foundation.
Additional First Friday information is available online at www.firstfridaylasvegas.com.
SPRINGS PRESERVE GOES
TO THE DOGS (AND BIRDS)
Whether you're a dog lover or a bird fancier, the Springs Preserve's the thing this Labor Day weekend.
Saturday's second annual Tails & Trails event features unguided hikes for humans and their canine friends on the Springs Preserve's more than 3½ miles of trails. There'll be dachshund races and humans can learn how to make dog treats for their four-legged pals. Also on the schedule from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: demonstrations by the Metropolitan Police Department's K9 unit, an adoption fair and exhibitors with treats and goodies for pampered pooches. Admission to Tails & Trails is free; regular admission prices apply for museum and gallery access. (However, dogs aren't allowed indoors.)
"Wings Over the Springs," meanwhile, returns on weekends and holidays (including Labor Day), allowing visitors to get up close and personal with hawk eagles, falcons, owls and other raptors. Live shows will be presented at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. during the long weekend. (And if you can't go this weekend, don't worry; the raptor shows continue through December.)
Admission to "Wings Over the Springs" is included with general admission to the Springs Preserve, 333 S. Valley View Blvd. The preserve is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; admission for Nevada residents is $9.95 for adults, $8.95 for students, seniors and military and $4.95 for children 5 to 17. (Children under 5 are free.) For tickets or more information, call 822-7700 or go online to www.springspreserve.org.
- Carol Cling