He's given us some of the last decade's swooniest piano pop; now he's writing an opera. So what does Rufus Wainwright do in his spare time? Channel Judy Garland, of course! The out-and-proud singer-songwriter who, like Garland, was born in a trunk, won raves for his 2006 on-site re-creation of her 1961 Carnegie Hall show. "Rufus Wainwright Sings Judy Garland" resurrects that material and reinterprets the legendary trouper's subsequent visit to the Bowl. Broadway notable Stephen Oremus conducts.
Hollywood Bowl. www.hollywoodbowl.com
Peter Gelb's first season as general manager of New York's Metropolitan Opera included the high-definition telecast of several productions to movie theaters around the country. To open his second season, the company will offer a new take on Donizetti's "Lucia di Lammermoor" by one of the numerous theater directors Gelb has recruited, Mary Zimmerman ("Metamorphosis"), starring beloved French soprano Natalie Dessay. The production will be seen in June and July at San Francisco Opera.
Metropolitan Opera, New York. www.metoperafamily.org
The baby boomer icons are out in force! Bruce Springsteen reunites with the E Street Band (again); Bob Dylan tours with Elvis Costello; Robert Plant teams with bluegrass crooner Alison Krauss for a covers collection. But Joni Mitchell deserves the biggest nod: "Shine," her "Starbucks record," features her first new music in a decade, and it's rumored to be awesome. Smart shoppers can get a great twofer by picking up "River: The Joni Letters," a star-studded meditation on Mitchell's oeuvre by her pal the jazz great Herbie Hancock.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday, September 13, 2007 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 37 words Type of Material: Correction
Master Chorale: A Fall Arts Preview item in Sunday's Arts & Music section said the Los Angeles Master Chorale would present "The City of Dis" by Louis Andriessen on Oct. 14. The performance will be Nov. 18.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Sunday, September 16, 2007 Home Edition Sunday Calendar Part E Page 2 Calendar Desk 1 inches; 53 words Type of Material: Correction
Pina Bausch: In the Fall Arts Preview last Sunday, choreographer Pina Bausch's name was misspelled as Nina in the "Must-See List" of Leonard Nimoy. Also, a preview item said the Los Angeles Master Chorale would be presenting "The City of Dis" by Louis Andriessen on Oct. 14. The performance will be Nov. 18.
"Shine," Hear Music; "River: The Joni Letters," Verve.
"Bridge & Tunnel" stars Sarah Jones, Sarah Jones and Sarah Jones . . . in a solo comedy that has the versatile writer-performer portraying more than a dozen characters from diverse cultural backgrounds who get together in a Queens, N.Y., coffeehouse for a poetry slam. Impressed by an early performance, Meryl Streep produced "Bridge & Tunnel" off-Broadway in 2004 before it went on to Broadway acclaim and a special Tony Award in 2006.
Brentwood Theater through Oct. 21.
Alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman has come a long way since the pitched battles of the '60s triggered by his decision to improvise freely, beyond the boundaries of meter and harmony. But a Pulitzer Prize, a MacArthur "genius" award and more haven't diminished the fascination of his still-innovative musical adventuring.
Royce Hall, UCLA. www.uclalive.org
Three years ago, Karita Mattila got a certain amount of predictably salacious press for stripping during Richard Strauss' "Salome" at the Metropolitan Opera. But the statuesque Finnish soprano attracted far more serious attention for her intense character portrayal and vital, dramatic singing. She can be even more compelling rendering Janácek's complex heroines, and she'll make her Los Angeles Opera debut in the Czech composer's most famous role with a new production of "Jenufa" shared by the Met.
Los Angeles Opera through Oct. 13. www.losangelesopera.com
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Donald Margulies ("Dinner With Friends," "Brooklyn Boy") returns to South Coast Rep (with actor Gregory Itzin, above) with "Shipwrecked! An Entertainment." Inspired by the tall tales of Louis de Rougemont, who mesmerized Victorian England with his over-the-top high seas chronicles, the play marks a voyage for Margulies, best known for his explorations of middle-class Jewish angst. Director Bart Delorenzo of the Evidence Room puts his auteurial stamp on the world premiere.
South Coast Repertory, Costa Mesa, through Oct. 14. www.scr.org
Richard Prince got his start by photographing advertising images and presenting them as his own work, launching a career that continues to question the notion of artistic originality. Stealing images from popular culture -- the Marlboro Man, muscle cars, biker chicks and pulp fiction -- he has created a body of work that simultaneously celebrates and critiques America's sensibilities and values. The most comprehensive survey of his work to date will appear in "Richard Prince: Spiritual America."
Guggenheim Museum, New York, through Jan. 9. www.guggenheim.org
The glass ceiling gets raised a notch as Marin Alsop begins her first season as music director of the Baltimore Symphony, thus becoming the first woman to lead a major American orchestra. Don't, however, read too much into the program: John Adams' "Fearful Symmetries" and Mahler's Fifth Symphony, which starts off with a funeral march. Alsop is remaking Baltimore into a fearless orchestra that will highlight living American composers all season.
Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, Baltimore. Season extends through June 22. www.baltimoresymphony.org