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August 31, 1994|SHAUNA SNOW | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press


Paris Update: The Paris Opera's sacked conductor Myung-Whun Chung was barred from a rehearsal studio Tuesday, a day after a judge reinstated him in the job, witnesses said. Chung, escorted by his lawyer into the futuristic edifice of stone and glass, was stopped at the studio door in a face-to-face clash with director Jean-Paul Cluzel as a rehearsal was about to start. Chung, 41, was dismissed two weeks ago in a contract dispute, the latest chapter in a string of scandals that have rocked the Paris Opera. A judge ruled on Monday that Chung should get his job back pending a final ruling on the dispute.


Pavarotti's Opera Course: Super tenor Luciano Pavarotti and London Records announced plans Tuesday for an upcoming CD and cassette series called "Opera Made Easy," featuring 20 titles designed for the American mass market. While noting that opera is "a very serious matter, it's great music, it's eternal and will be there forever, like antique furniture," Pavarotti said during the New York announcement that the music "belongs everywhere, in the subway, in the bathroom. . . ."


Nirvana Release Halved: Plans announced last week for a double album of live Nirvana songs have been scaled back. The DGC Records release, due by the end of the year, will now be a single album, consisting of the band's "MTV Unplugged" acoustic special taped last November. Included will be two songs filmed for that show that did not air on TV. The second album of unreleased live performances has been postponed indefinitely. Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic, who is compiling the album along with drummer Dave Grohl, explained the revised plans by saying that while the double release was planned as the "ultimate tribute" to Nirvana lead singer Kurt Cobain, who committed suicide in April, "the emotional aspect of it all threw us for a loop. The live record is gonna happen, but not now."


Paternity Claim Dismissed: Citing insufficient evidence, British magistrates on Tuesday threw out a claim by a woman living in the United States that homosexual pop star Boy George was the father of her son. The unnamed woman sued the flamboyant British singer of the 1980s group Culture Club last September, seeking maintenance of her 7-year-old son. The singer said at the time that he had never had sex with any woman and the birth must have been a "miracle."


Independent Screenings: Cable's TV new Independent Film Channel, featuring 24 hours of uncut, commercial-free films made outside the Hollywood studio system, launches Thursday, accompanied by a special "IFC Opening Night" screening in four U.S. cities, including Los Angeles. The free 7:30 p.m. event, at Santa Monica's Monica 4 Theatres, offers a sample of the channel's programming, starting with "I Don't Want to Talk About It," starring Marcello Mastrioanni. Other films to be screened include Winona Ryder in "Night on Earth" and Kenneth Branagh's Oscar-nominated short film "Swan Song," starring John Gielgud. Seating is first-come, first-served.


Long Beach Changes: Barry Brown is leaving his job as producer of Long Beach Civic Light Opera today, although he will remain as a consulting producer. As a result of his exit and the recent departure of the organization's CEO, Clare Faulkner, the first production of the upcoming season, "Can-Can," has been postponed from Sept. 29-Oct. 16 until January, a spokeswoman said. Subscribers are being informed via mail.


Inaugural Bookings: The brand-new Thousand Oaks Civic Auditorium has booked three musicals for its opening season, to be produced by Kansas City- and Phoenix-based Theater League. Scheduled are "A Chorus Line" (Jan. 18-22), "Annie" with Harve Presnell and JoAnn Worley (April 5-9) and "42nd Street" with Jack Jones (May 10-14).


Batman on Ice: Batman and his foes (including the Penguin and Catwoman) and Looney Tunes cartoon characters Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Tweety and the Tasmanian Devil will soon have a new arena in which to showcase their stuff. The classic characters will lace on skates in "Warner Bros. Family Entertainment on Ice," a new national touring ice show set to make its national premiere at the Forum on Jan. 17. The show, co-produced by Irving Azoff, will feature a company of 42 skaters.


Thieves posing as employees of Polygram International, the company that backed Woodstock '94, have walked away with $28,000 in one-of-a-kind curtains decorated with the concert's dove-and-guitar logo. Promoters had planned to raise money for charity by selling the three curtains that covered the 50-foot-high speaker towers. . . . Actress Judy Davis ("A Passage to India") will star opposite Glenn Close in an NBC television movie based on the true story of Col. Margarethe Cammermeyer, the highest-ranking officer ever to be discharged from the U.S. military because of sexual orientation. Close and Barbra Streisand are executive producers.

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