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Weekend Plans: Ballet, puppets, Farmer Jason, more

Carolina Ballet's Ugly Duckling continues. Drumline Live is at the Progress Energy Center. Farmer Jason appears at the N.C. Museum of Art. And much more. Your weekend family fun.

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Carolina Ballet's The Ugly Duckling
Sarah Lindenfeld Hall

Your weekend family fun ...

Carolina Ballet's The Ugly Duckling continues this weekend with performances Saturday and Sunday at the Progress Energy Center for Performing Arts. The 35-minute piece is based on the classic story by Hans Christian Andersen and includes a narrator, adorable child dancers who come out in the transitions between scenes, and some wonderful costumes. The show, which is two hours total with intermission, also includes two other more traditional ballet works - a Pas de deux (AKA duet) from The Flower Festival in Genzano and a piece set to an Edvard Grieg piano concerto. I took my almost six-year-old daughter and mom to the performance last weekend. My six-year-old literally sat at the edge of her seat throughout the entire Ugly Duckling performance. It really was a beautiful piece and the narrator, Curtis Cregan of the children's show Hi-5, did a wonderful job keeping her attention. I wish the other performances on the bill were as child friendly. So if you're going with younger kids, I might recommend the 11 a.m. Saturday performance, which will just include The Ugly Duckling. Cregan will meet with children after the show and sign autographs, I'm told.Tickets for the 11 a.m. Saturday performance are $20 to $30 a piece. See my earlier post for more information.
Also at the Progress Energy Center, Drumline Live will make a stop there on Friday and Saturday with performances at 8 p.m. each night. The cast of musicians and dancers brings an "explosive energy and athleticism to an eclectic mix of sounds," the press release says. "Equally at home with the hottest contemporary hip hop, R&B, classic Motown tunes and the rousing sounds of the great brass tradition, Drumline Live is thrilled to share the American marching band experience with a wider audience," it continues. Tickets start at $20 a piece.
The Breathless Reads tour, featuring five bestselling authors of young adults books, will stop at Quail Ridge Books & Music in Raleigh at 7 p.m. Friday. The books, all published by Penguin, are geared toward ages 14 and up. There will be a discussion and some giveaways. See my earlier post for details.
Paperhand Puppet Intervention's winter show, Big Tent Cabaret, opens Thursday and runs through March 6 at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro. The folks from Paperhand, who are behind those giant puppets at Raleigh's First Night celebration and other festivals, will use all kinds of puppets to tell their stories during the hour-long show.
It's a big week for consignment sales. The massive Kids EveryWear at the Morrisville Outlet Mall is open to the general public Friday through Monday. Apex United Methodist Church's Friendship Closet is open Friday evening and Saturday morning. And Passed On in Clinton is open Friday and Saturday. See my earlier post for details.
Farmer Jason, an Emmy Award winner, will perform his dynamic mix of lively music and homegrown fun featuring farm life, animals, and nature at the N.C. Museum of Art in Raleigh. Farmer Jason is actually internationally acclaimed singer-songwriter Jason Ringenberg who pioneered the fusion of punk rock and country with his group Jason and the Scorchers back in the 1980s. His thoughts turned to kids and family music after the birth of his own children. He entered the kids music world in 2003. This should be a good show ... or actually two good shows. He's performing at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday at the art museum. Tickets are $3 a pop. And there will be free drop-in crafts from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. You do not need a ticket to the show to participate in the crafts. But you should get your tickets to the show soon. Tickets for these shows have been known to sell out. Click here for details and to buy tickets.
All Target stores will be offering a free Dr. Seuss storytime from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday. Check the website for some Dr. Seuss activities to do at home.
There's a bike "open mike" night from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at University Mall in Chapel Hill. There will be live music, a recycled bike raffle, hula hoops, jump ropes, personal fitness assessments and more.
Raleigh Little Theatre's teen performance ensemble Storytellers to Go! continues to bring "Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp" to audiences across Wake County. This weekend, they'll perform the 45-minute show at 3 p.m. Saturday at Cameron Village Library in Raleigh. The performance is free. It's recommended for all ages.
Hockey is the focus of Marbles Kids Museum's Family Fit Series from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Staff members of the Carolina Hurricanes will be on hand to help kids hone their hockey skills. Free with admission, which is $5 per person.
And Black History Month will wrap up with the 2011 National African American Read-In from 2 p.m.to 4 p.m. Saturday at the State Capitol in downtown Raleigh. It's free and open to the public. Capital staff, students and community leaders will read from selected works by African American authors. Raleigh author Evelyn K. Lemar will read from her book, “…And Then I Woke Up.” Members of the N.C. Association of Black Storytellers also will participate, including Renee Andrews and Darby West of Winston-Salem and E.J. Stewart of Raleigh. The Capitol is bounded by Edenton, Salisbury, Morgan and Wilmington streets. Schools, churches, libraries and community groups across the country will host similar events.

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