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by Lenise Willis

For an interesting look behind the curtain, this Wednesday is the onetime local showing of the film One Night Stand, a documentary about a group of talented artists (composers, directors, actors and lyricists) who are pushed to their limits to compose, stage and present four musicals in only 24 hours. The film, which is showing at Greensboro Grande Stadium 16, highlights the pressures of live theater.

Friday, Twin City Stage opens Lend Me A Tenor at the Arts Council Theatre. When a world-famous tenor is brought to the Cleveland Opera Company to entertain at a gala fundraiser, everything starts to fall apart before he even leaves the hotel room. Even when he accidentally overdoses on tranquilizers, the show must go on. Running through Sunday and then again Feb. 7-10, the musical is full of farcical plot twists, double entendres, innuendos, mistaken identity and mayhem.

Friday is also the opening night of NC Shakespeare Festival’s 33 Variations, a new drama, at Hanesbrands Theatre, in which an onstage pianist plays the variations live throughout the play.

The music-filled psychological drama follows a musicologist obsessed with uncovering a mystery behind Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations. The action shifts in time from present-day Bonn, Germany, to 19th century Vienna where Beethoven is working. As Beethoven copes with the progressive loss of his hearing, the musicologist struggles to complete her life’s work and reconcile with her estranged daughter before her illness overtakes her. Play runs Feb. 1-24.

As a promotion of 33 Variations, on Monday, Festival Stage of Winston- Salem presents a screening of Amadeus, a 1984 film that follows the rivalry of a mediocre composer and the talented genius, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, at 7:30 p.m. at Hanesbrands Theatre.

Coming up next weekend is the Greensboro Playwrights’ Forum An Evening of Short Plays #28, as part of the Greensboro Fringe Festival. The event includes seven short plays for the single admission price of $10. The evening of performances begins at 8:05 p.m. nightly Feb. 7-10 and at 2:05 p.m. that Sunday at the City Arts Studio Theatre in the Greensboro Cultural Center.

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