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Monday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 17 Oct 2011 7:19 AM

Today in the roundup: The Dallas Opera’s guiding light, the trickiness of comedy on stage and the Amon Carters’ dedication to research.


THE MAN FOR THE JOB: The Dallas Opera has had some financial ups and downs of late. Belt-tightening forced the opera to cancel a planned performance of Katyá Kabanová scheduled for this fall. On the plus side, the company is close to raising enough money to obtain a $10 million matching grant from an anonymous donor. Guiding the company through these tricky economic times has been Keith Cerny, who took the general director’s job in May of 2010. Scott Cantrell profiles Cerny on, who has shown in previous posts that he’s got the knack for turning things around.

BRINGING THE FUNNY: If the old adage is true that it’s harder to do comedy than drama, then doing one of the theater’s funniest all-time comedies must be especially difficult. That’s the challenge that WingSpan Theatre Company has taken on with The Importance of Being Ernest. And judging from the luke-warm reviews, this one really was a challenge. Mark Lowry on and Lawson Taitte on each take issue with how some of the lines are delivered. Meanwhile, Alexandra Bonifield calls the performance “uneven,” but also says the company gives, “a sweet, accessible, enjoyable production.” Judge for yourself through Saturday.

AMON CARTER’S ACADEMIC SIDE: You would expect Amon Carter Museum of American Art Director Andrew Walker to say nice things about the museum on his director’s blog. No harm in a little promotion. But in his most recent post, Walker writes about how he first became impressed with the Carter – more than 20 years before he worked there. What’s interesting is that it wasn’t as much about the art on the walls as it was the museum’s dedication to it.