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THEATRE — PURE does Christmas ... their way
Opening Fri. Nov. 18
Shows on Nov. 19, 25, 26, Dec. 2, 3, 9, 10
8 p.m.
PURE Theatre
701 East Bay St.
(in the Cigar Factory)

After less than three years of existence, PURE Theatre has swiftly become Charleston's go-to spot for avant-garde, challenging productions, and this season has already set the bar high with sell-out runs of Spinning Into Butter and A Number. PURE ensemble member (and Have Not!) Greg Tavares directs a cast that includes PURE co-founders Rodney Lee Rogers and Sharon Graci in Craig Lucas' Reckless, another thought-provoking piece -- this one's a bittersweet, surreal comedy that follows a woman named Rachel as she flees her home on a snowy Christmas Eve after finding out that her husband has hired a hit man to kill her. The work of playwright Lucas is a hot commodity; he's won enough awards to topple a trophy case and wrote film adaptations of his plays Reckless, Prelude to a Kiss, Blue Window, and The Dying Gaul, which is now playing in New York and L.A.

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EVENT — No sadness rises with this Blue Moon
Blue Moon Bash
Fri. Nov. 18
6:30-8 p.m.
Halsey Institute
Simons Center for the Arts
54 St. Philip St.

The Halsey Institute at CofC unveils its new name (and attitude) with a public party designed to display the wide array of activities and programs offered and sponsored by the Halsey. The evening kicks off with tunes courtesy of the Kevin Hamilton Trio, wine, heavy hors d'oeuvres, and the opportunity to view Cooperation of Pleasures: The Paintings of Julie Evans and Barbara Takenaga -- enticing potential patrons into joining the Patron Print Program, one of the many benefits of the Halsey's new membership program. After enjoying the soirée, guests can head into the Robinson Theatre for a screening of Mana: Beyond Belief, a film by Roger Manley and Peter Friedman that spans five continents in its exploration of "power objects and how people believe in them." Manley will be in attendance and available for a Q&A after the film.

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EVENT — Charleston's F&Bers band together for a good cause
Patty Fest 2005
Sun. Nov. 20
1-5 p.m.
Lowndes Grove Plantation

The third annual Patty Fest, a joyous oyster roast/barbecue featuring live music from The Average Joe Band, a silent auction, and a raffle, honors the memory of Patrick Ringwald, the general manager of the Boathouse who was shot and killed at the restaurant by a former employee in 2003. Out of a senseless tragedy sprung hope in the form of the Patrick Ringwald Memorial Foundation, which provides funds for Crisis Ministries, the Lowcountry AIDS Foundation, and an annual scholarship for a CofC student (this year's recipient will be announced at the event). Patty Fest raised tens of thousands of dollars last year and in 2003, and organizers hope to continue that trend this year, too, with the majority of money raised going toward the construction of a living memorial to Ringwald -- a 4,000 square foot herb garden at the new Trident Tech culinary school campus.

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FILM — Billions of dollars can't buy adequate health care, apparently
Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price
Thurs. Nov. 17
7 p.m.
Physician's Auditorium
George St.

Wal-Mart Watch is a grassroots activism group aiming to educate the public about the truth behind Wal-Mart's business model, which has less to do with a smiling yellow dot in a bow-tie than with keeping their employees non-unionized, destitute, and without benefits (many poorer employees are on Medicaid) in order to keep the corporation's profit margins high. November 13-19 has been designated Higher Expectations Week by Wal-Mart Watch, and Thinking People and the International Longshoremen Charleston branch are co-sponsoring a showing of a new documentary, Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price, which takes viewers into the real lives of Wal-Mart workers and their families, the small business owners who are forced out of business when the big-bucks retailer moves in, and communities that are affected by the political power and actions of the gigantic company.

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LECTURE — Drawing his own conclusions about the war in Iraq
Jeff Danziger
Thurs. Nov. 17
7 p.m.
Stern Center, fourth floor
71 George St.

College of Charleston continues its series of lectures by editorial cartoonists with an appearance by New York Times cartoonist Jeff Danziger, who has made a splash with his syndicated drawings that frequently target the Bush Administration and the Iraq war. Danziger knows whereof he draws: he served as an intelligence officer and a linguist in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, earning a Bronze Star and an Air Medal before embarking on his career as an editorial cartoonist over three decades ago. Danziger has twice been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and is the author of a novel and 10 collections of cartoons. His latest collection is entitled Wreckage Begins With an "W": Cartoons of the Bush Administration.

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DANCE — Fosse, Fosse, Fosse! (Oh, and Broadway, too)
The Great White Way
Fri. Nov. 18 and Sat. Nov. 19
7:30 p.m.
King Street Theatre
477 King St.

Charleston Ballet Theatre's intimate Black Box Theatre may be small, but the dance numbers in The Great White Way, as you may have guessed from the name, are huge. The first half of the night's program draws from some of the biggest hits in past and recent Broadway history, including The Producers, You're A Good Man Charlie Brown, Kiss Me Kate, Gypsy, The Music Man, and more. The second half features highlights from the CBT's sizzling salute to Bob Fosse, the jazzy director, dancer, and choreographer who brought Cabaret, Chicago, and Damn Yankees (to name but a few) to the boards of Broadway. (Word has it the Fosse bits are pretty naughty!)

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CONCERT MUSIC — It's almost winter: bring on the borscht
CSO Masterworks: Russian White Nights
Sat. Nov. 19
8 p.m.
$15-50, $5/students
Gaillard Auditorium
77 Calhoun St.

Talented young pianist Adam Neiman, who garnered raves for his performance with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra in 2004, returns to lend his nimble hands to an evening of stirring Russian works: Stravinsky's Petrouchka Ballet Suite and Tchaikovsky's Piano Concert No. 1. CSO Music Director David Stahl leads the orchestra and Neiman as they evoke the mysterious and enchanting atmosphere of Russia. For the true Russophile, Fish restaurant, in conjunction with the CSO, offers a dinner influenced by the motherland (for more details on the menu, see pg. 45).


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