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BEST BETS: Friday 6/21

June 20, 2002

8pm Opera

"Flip Side 2" is the second edition of an operatic-excerpts show with a twist: humor as a main, often unexpected, ingredient in standard-repertory arias and ensembles. OperaWorks' genuine opera singers--Heather Calvete, Kristina Driskill, Christopher Campbell and Roberto Perlas Gomez--perform each item as intended, and then ... costumes catch on the scenery; the singers are getting a divorce from each other; a substitute tenor has not learned the staging, etc. Incongruous medleys are mounted; crossover medleys are committed, Elvis sings "Di Provenza"--you get the picture. Ann Baltz is artistic director-pianist; and Eli Villanueva is the stage director.

OperaWorks, Unitarian Universalist Church, 12355 Moorpark St., Studio City, 8 p.m. $15 to $18. Also, Saturday, 8 p.m. (818) 831-9597.

7:30pm Jazz

The summer smooth-jazz concert series at the Hyatt Newporter takes on an international flavor with performances by Hiroshima and Willie & Lobo. Hiroshima's hybrid blend of Japanese instruments with funk, pop, urban and jazz elements has been pleasing its fans for more than two decades. Violin and acoustic guitar duo Willie & Lobo open the show with their Gypsy-flavored musical interplay.

Hiroshima, Willie & Lobo, Hyatt Newporter Outdoor Amphitheater, 1107 Jamboree Road, Newport Beach, 7:30 p.m. $32.50 to $57.50 (213) 480-3232.

all day Movies

"Sunshine State," John Sayles' 13th feature as a director, brings together many of the trademarks of his earlier work, including a geographic specificity, social conscience and earnest characterizations not often found in American films. Edie Falco and Angela Bassett play two Florida women who find themselves back in their small hometowns after the big dreams of their youth failed to pan out. Ralph Waite, James McDaniel, Richard Edson, Jane Alexander, Timothy Hutton, Mary Steenburgen, Alan King and Miguel Ferrer are also part of the typically Saylesian, talented ensemble cast.

"Sunshine State," rated PG-13 for brief strong language, a sexual reference and thematic elements, opens Friday in selected theaters.

all day Movies

In the futuristic thriller "Minority Report," Tom Cruise grapples with the age-old question of predetermination versus free will. Based on a story by noted science fiction writer Philip K. Dick, the Steven Spielberg film is set in 2054 in the Washington, D.C., Pre-Crime bureau, which rounds up and convicts people before they commit murder based on downloads from the brains of genetically engineered "Pre-Cogs." Colin Farrell, Max Von Sydow and Samantha Morton also star.

"Minority Report," rated PG-13 for violence, brief language, some sexuality and drug content, opens Friday in general release.

8pm Theater

" 'Master Harold' ... and the boys," the powerful drama by South African playwright and political activist Athol Fugard, chronicles a white adolescent's initiation in the uses of racial power in South Africa under apartheid, as it explores racism, friendship and the bonds between fathers and sons.

" 'Master Harold' ... and the boys," International City Theatre at Center Theater, 300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, Thursdays to Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Ends July 14. $27 to $35. (562) 436-4610.

7:30pm Leisure

Ever want to play the fiddle? Dance a jig or move your feet like the people in "Riverdance"? The Summer Solstice Folk Music, Dance & Storytelling Festival is both a folk music performance and teaching program. Along with concerts by more than 100 featured performers are more than 300 workshops and lessons on fiddle, harp, banjo, bagpipes, saws and dulcimers as well as Irish step-dancing, Italian, Greek and other ethnic dances. Festivities start Friday evening with a storytelling concert and dancing.

Summer Solstice Folk Music, Dance & Storytelling Festival, Soka University of America, 26800 W. Mulholland Highway, Calabasas, 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. Also Saturday, 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday evening program, $7 to $10; festival admission $18 to $22; some Saturday and Sunday evening events may have an additional charge. Call for complete schedule. (818) 817-7756.

8pm Pop Music

Stepping from cable-comedy stardom back to his original calling, Chris Isaak is on the concert trail to remind the fans of the suave retro-pop fantasist who predated the swinging sitcom bachelor of Showtime's "The Chris Isaak Show." With a new album, "Always Got Tonight," in stores, the singer-guitarist teams on tour with the demographically compatible Natalie Merchant.

Chris Isaak, with Natalie Merchant, Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, 8808 Irvine Center Drive, Irvine, 8 p.m. $25 to $55. (949) 855-8096.

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