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Little Theatre, Winston-Salem Cinema Society events planned

by Mark Burger

No sooner will the “smoke” clear – that being fumes from Smoke on the Mountain, which concludes its run at the Arts Council Theatre this weekend – than the Little Theatre of Winston-Salem gears up for its next production: Thomas Wolfe’s Look Homeward, Angel.

Based on Wolfe’s autobiographical 1929 novel (his first, incidentally), the play is set in a fictional Southern town not unlike Wolfe’s own hometown of Asheville. The principal character, a young writer reflecting back upon his past, is not unlike Wolfe. Starting to detect a pattern here?

The 1958 Broadway production, directed by George Roy Hill, starred Anthony Perkins, Hugh Griffith and Jo Van Fleet – all of whom received Tony Award nominations, as did the show itself as Best Play.

The Little Theatre is currently celebrating its 73rd season, making it one of the region’s – and the nation’s – most venerable community theaters.

Look Homeward, Angel is being directed by Sharon Andrews, associate professor of theater at Wake Forest University – she directs shows there, too – and will run from Nov. 9 through Nov. 18.

This will be the final MainStage production of 2007, but the Arts Council Theatre will be playing host to a number of productions through the end of the year. The MainStage season will resume in February with Larry Shue’s The Foreigner.

As for Smoke on the Mountain, this light-hearted musical romp with a distinctly North Carolina flavor, directed by Bobby Bodford, runs through Sunday.

Individual tickets are $22, $20 (senior citizens) and $18 (students). Season subscriptions are also available. For tickets (to either Smoke on the Mountain or Look Homeward, Angel – or both), or for more information about the Little Theatre, call (336) 725-4001 or see littletheatreonline.com/

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Before you know it, the holiday season will best fast upon us. But the Winston-Salem Cinema Society has already lined up its big-screen cinematic treats for the remainder of the year in its ongoing CinemaSECCA series.

Private Fears in Public Places, the latest film from the legendary filmmaker Alain Resnais, will be screened 7 p.m. Oct. 4 and 2 p.m. Oct. 7. Based on Alan Ayckbourn’s play, this ensemble drama received 8 Cesar nominations (France’s equivalent of the Academy Awards) including Best Director for Resnais.

David Sington’s documentary In the Shadow of the Moon will be screened 7 p.m. Nov. 1 and 2 p.m. Nov. 4. The winner of the Audience Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, the film explores NASA’s Apollo space program, which of course culminated in Apollo 11’s landing on the moon on July 21, 1969. The film features in-depth interviews and commentary from the surviving astronauts of the NASA moonshots.

For December, CinemaSECCA will present Craig Zobel’s award-winning independent comedy Great World of Sound, which will be shown 7 p.m. Dec. 6 and 2 p.m. Dec. 9. Pat Healy and Kene Holliday star as a pair of traveling “talent salesmen” whose job it is to sign up new musical talent. But as they cross the country, meeting and signing (and collecting a small producer’s fee), they begin to wonder if they’re actually scamming these people… and if they’re being scammed, too!

This film is rated R.

All screenings will be held – where else? – at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art (750 Marguerite Drive, W-S). Admission is $7, $6 (college students and senior citizens), $5 (for SECCA members and Cinema Society members).

For more information, see cinemasociety.org/

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