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February 17, 2005

`Baby' at Dundalk

Richard Maltby Jr. and David Shire's 1983 Broadway musical Baby, about the experiences of three sets of parents-to-be, opens at Dundalk Community Theatre tomorrow.

John Desmone directs a cast headed by Lauren Spencer-Harris and Brent Bell as a pair of young marrieds, Shannon Woll- man and John O'Brien as a 30-something couple, and Liz Boyer Hunnicutt and Michael Quinn as empty nesters dealing with an unexpected pregnancy.

Show times at Dundalk Community Theatre, on the Community College of Baltimore County's Dundalk campus, 7200 Sollers Point Road, are 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. Sundays, through Feb. 27. Tickets are $20. Call 410-285-9667.

-- J. Wynn Rousuck

`One Way Street'

One Way Street, the newest work by Eric Bass' Vermont-based Sandglass Theater Company, will play four performances at the Theatre Project beginning tonight.

Starring Bass, his wife, Ines Zeller Bass, and Merrill Garbus, One Way Street uses puppets, imagery, poetry and the writings of German-Jewish philosopher Walter Benjamin to examine memory, longing, dreams and cultural history. The performances are part of Sandglass' week-long residency at the Theatre Project, under the auspices of Towson University's graduate theater program.

Show times at the Theatre Project, 45 W. Preston St., are 8 p.m. tonight-Saturday, with a matinee at 2 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $16. Call 410-752-8558.

-- J. Wynn Rousuck

New-music premiere

Musicians who concentrate on contemporary music are as rare as they are valuable. Pianist Marilyn Nonken is a case in point. Her commitment to new composers and her ability to perform their music with insight and assurance have earned her a sterling reputation. In College Park on Saturday, Nonken will perform the U.S. premiere of Chris Dench's passing bells: night (written for her) on a program that also includes works by Arthur Jarvinen and Pierre Boulez, along with a golden oldie that still sounds brand new -- the Concord Sonata by Charles Ives. The Ives sonata will be repeated on Nonken's recital Sunday afternoon in Baltimore, which also includes Tristan Murail's Les Travaux et Les Jours.

Marilyn Nonken gives a piano recital at 8 p.m. Saturday at Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, University of Maryland, University Boulevard and Stadium Drive, College Park. Tickets are $30. Call 301-405-2787. Nonken also performs at 3 p.m. Sunday at An die Musik, 409 N. Charles St. Tickets are $15, $8 for students and seniors. Call 410-385-2638.

-- Tim Smith

Very early music

One of the first great composers in Western music was born more than 900 years ago, and it took almost that many years before she started receiving proper attention. Today, Hildegard von Bingen, a mystic nun whose musical art represents a glowing light in the midst of the Dark Ages, is well known to many, thanks in large measure to the brilliant efforts of the vocal group Anonymous 4.

One of Hildegard's most admired works, a morality play from around 1150 titled Ordo Virtutum (The Company of the Virtues), will be given a staged performance by Peabody Chamber Opera this weekend. The piece tells the story of a soul led into temptation and back to grace. "Though deeply rooted in Catholic Christianity," says Peabody's opera director, Roger Brunyate, "it emerges as a celebration of goodness and of life, embracing qualities common to many faiths."

"Ordo Virtutum" is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday at Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 811 Cathedral St. Admission free. Call 410-659-8100, ext. 2.

-- Tim Smith

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