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Spring Guide: Dance, drama & more 

Dance — North Carolina Dance Theatre officially celebrates its 40th anniversary this week with Director's Choice at Knight Theater (March 10-12), but you also want to stick around for the big finish of NCDT's season, Spotlight: An Evening of Women Choreographers (April 28-30). In between, don't sleep on another great American company at the Knight, Garth Fagan Dance (March 31-April 3).

Symphony — Former Charlotte Symphony maestro Christof Perick drops by for an evening of Wagner & Bruckner (March 11-12). Christopher Warren-Green resumes the reins for the remainder, finishing his first season as music director with a flourish, as Stephen returns to Belk Theater for Grieg's Piano Concerto (May 6-7), handsomely coupled with Sibelius Symphony #2. A more intimate concert experience happens at Knight Theater when Warren-Green conducts Light My Fire (March 25) with music by Handel and Stravinsky included in the fireworks. Charlotte Concerts is offering mellower fare next week as Orpheus Chamber Orchestra (March 18) visits Halton Theater with soloist Rudolf Buchbinder joining them for Mozart Piano Concerto #20.

Opera — Not much doing this side of Met Live in HD at Stonecrest 22 and Concord Mills, but let's all help Opera Carolina in making Gilbert & Sullivan's HMS Pinafore (May 12-15) a box office success at the PAC.

Black Power — What does Tennessee Williams have to do with Black Power? With Corlis Hayes, Sultan Omar El-Amin, and Jonovan Adams announced as cast members in the upcoming Theatre Charlotte production of The Glass Menagerie (March 18-April 3), plenty. On Q Productions caps off its season of satire with perhaps the greatest of them all, George C. Wolfe's The Colored Museum (March 30-April 10).

Popcorn Titles — The Broadway Lights Series continues to ship in the crowd-pleasing titles, with Young Frankenstein (March 15-20) and Shrek (June 14-19). But try not to miss the homegrown stage adaptation of The Princess Bride (March 16-27) uptown at the Breakfast Club.

Drama — Max McLean brings his devilish adaptation of C.S. Lewis's The Screwtape Letters (March 26-27) to Knight Theater. The Carolina Actors Studio Theatre production of Agnes of God (April 21-May 21) finally brings this famed script to town. And Starving Artist Productions, famed for The Birth, branches out with Brian Friel's The Faith Healer (May 4-13) at Duke Energy in Spirit Square. The Children's Theatre High School Ensemble show their mettle in Lord of the Flies (May 11-14) at ImaginOn.

Comedy — You may have missed Sarah Ruhl's The Clean House at Actor's Theatre in 2007, but you surely don't plan to miss The Vibrator Play next season. Meanwhile, Actor's brings you Ruhl's Dead Man's Cell Phone (April 1-23). Charlotte Shakespeare Festival will break the mold this season at their annual free presentation on The Green, with Moliere's wickedest comedy, Tartuffe (June 3-19).

Musicals — Theatre Charlotte has lifted their game in recent seasons, so their season closer, Rent (May 13-29), figures to be solid. Musicals always flower in June at Halton Theatre, where CPCC Summer Theatre opens their season with Hello, Dolly! (June 3-11) and Will Rogers Follies (June 17-25). More adventurous aficionados will no doubt stalk [title of show] (June 8-25) at Actor's Theatre.

Pops — The brand names appearing with Charlotte Symphony are The Four Tops (March 18-19) at Ovens and Chris Botti (May 21) at the Belk. Pop-jazz legend Al Jarreau (March 20) brings less backup to the Knight, surely a blessing.

Outside the Loop — Ready to venture outside the I-485 loop? Best bets for spring include The Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford (March 30) as they visit St. Alban's in Davidson; the US Premiere of Madonna and Me (April 7-10), presented by The Edge Theatre Company in Rock Hill; and the local premiere of Ragtime (June 16-25), bravely attempted by Davidson Community Players.

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