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Arts Beat: 'Nine' debuts, Bobby blows his horn and a 'Tempest' blows in

As either the last production of the main theater season or the first of the summer shows, the musical "Nine" is making its regional premiere this week in Shea's Smith Theatre, nearly 40 years after it took Broadway by storm. Leave it to Second Generation Theatre – founded by three women – to produce the multi-Tony Award-winning show about one man's midlife crisis, as seen by the many women whose lives helped shape him. Maury Yeston, who wrote the music and lyrics, based his story on Federico Fellini's art house classic "8 1/2," a semi-autobiographical movie about a filmmaker who has hit a wall in both his personal and professional lives. It opened in New York City in 1982 with Raul Julia starring as Guido Contini but became famous for the sheer lacy catsuit Anita Morris wore as Guido's mistress, Carla.

One reason the show may be debuting this late in the season here is that Second Generation didn't want to drain other local theater productions when it assembled its dynamite cast of 14 women, including Aimee Walker, Lisa Ludwig, Arianne Davidow and Kelly Copps. Guido is played by Ben Michael Moran, who was so incredible earlier this year in SGT's "Angels in America Part One."

The show opens June 14 (opening night is sold out) and runs through June 30 at the Smith Theatre (658 Main St.). Tickets are $30; $25 for seniors and $15 for students, through the Shea's box office or online at secondgenerationtheatre.com.

Chromatic Club concert at Canisius 

One hundred and twenty years ago, more than 30 years before Buffalo would have its own symphony orchestra, the Chromatic Club of Buffalo was presenting live music performances. The club, which is celebrating its 120th anniversary with the concert, "Our Past, Present, and Future," at 7 p.m. on June 14 in the Montante Cultural Center (2001 Main St., Canisius College campus), also encouraged music education along with general appreciation, and helped found the Community Music School.

Jazz sax legend Bobby Militello and his quartet will join club members and students of the music school in the concert. Tickets are $25 at the door or through Eventbrite via chromatic club.org (click on the upcoming events tag at bottom). The event will include light refreshments and door prizes.

And more jazz ...

Members of the Buffalo Jazz Composers Workshop will perform new compositions at 7:30 p.m. June 15 in the Taylor Theater on the Kenan Campus (433 Locust St., Lockport). The group features Tim Clark on trumpet, Kelly Bucheger on saxophone, Nelson Rivera on sax and percussion, Jared Tinkham on guitar, Alec Dube on vibraphone and John Bacon on drums.

Tickets are $20, with discounts for Kenan Center members and students, available at kenancenter.org or by phone at 433-2617. Parking is free on the grounds of the Kenan campus.

A 'Will' wind blows in

One last stormy night will occupy First-Day-of-Summer's Eve on June 20 when Shakespeare in Delaware Park hosts its opening night reception adjacent to Shakespeare Hill in Delaware Park. Before Prospero makes the first wind blow in this year's production of "The Tempest," guests can meet members of the cast and crew while enjoying hors d'oeuvres and a Flying Bison Brewing beer tasting. Tickets are $40 for members, $50 for others, and include reserved seating for the performance. Go to shakespeareindelawarepark.org. The event begins at 6 p.m.; showtime is 7:15 p.m. "The Tempest" runs from June 20 to July 14 with performances at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays.

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