Lohengrin and the Lake

While our friends at Opera Plus haven't exactly promised us any snippets of Wagner's passionate ode to courtly love, Lohengrin, we do love the idea of a lake cruise devoted to the operatic arts. This Sunday, the Mish-a-Nock boards at 6 pm for a two-hour cruise featuring Spokane native Libby Kopcynski, founder and director of the other company. The New York-based opera company staged Mozart's Magic Flute in Usk last summer, and we hear they will be back on Aug. 28 for a presentation entitled "Music from a Sacred Space." Kopszynski will be joined on the cruise by local favorites Susan Windham, Kresha Frankhauser, Max Mendez, Matthew Lodge and Carol Miyamoto on piano. Tickets are $25 per person. Call: (208) 664-2827.

They're Wired

The shows -- and the lights, thanks to new wiring -- will go on at Spokane Interplayers Ensemble. Producing Artistic Director Robin Stanton announced last week that the theater has actually revised its renovation costs downward, and that yes, Virginia, there will be a new season. The Complete History of America (Abridged), spoofing everything from Columbus to Clinton, will open as scheduled on Sept. 5. The rest of the plays (and their topics) are God's Man in Texas (mega-churches), Fully Committed (four-star restaurants), Cobb (the ornery baseball legend), Watch on the Rhine (anti-fascism in the homeland during WW2) and Always... Patsy Cline (country music and fame). An added surprise was that, for production next March, the Spokane Civic Theatre has given Interplayers the local rights to Anton in Show Business, the much-anticipated Jane Martin comedy about a backwoods Texas production of Chekhov's Three Sisters.

Viva Las Shoppas

Have you noticed the gold emblazoned Viva Las Vegas T-shirts that are showing up all over town? You haven't seen them? That can only mean one thing: You missed the Shop's debut as an outdoor movie theater this Saturday. Shame on you. About 80 people filled the parking lot in front of the South Perry caf & eacute; -- some sat in the bushes, we're not quite sure why -- and watched the Elvis Presley classic under the stars. Spokanites of all ages -- along with Angus the beagle -- hauled chairs and couches over to the big white screen, and a good time was had by all. There was -- dare we say it? -- a clear sense of community in the air that night.

But wait -- if you missed out, all is not lost quite yet. This Saturday, our favorite banjo-playing, Elvis-suit-wearing, studio-operating baristas are showing Gene Wilder in the 1974 flick Young Frankenstein at 9:30 pm. It's still by donation only. Bring your own chair -- more movies to come every Saturday through August. Call: 534-1647.

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