It's amazing just how contemporary Noël Coward is, exclaims Victoria Bussert, director of the Great Lakes Theater Festival's production of the gay playwright's Private Lives. "He really has fun with what is masculine and what is feminine. He doesn't let society determine the male-female relationship." The 1930 comedy is about a divorced couple who unwittingly share a hotel while on honeymoon with their new spouses. "It's romantic and sexy," Bussert says. "And it's just a little shocking just how timely it really is." Private Lives is at the Ohio Theatre (1519 Euclid Avenue) at 7:30 tonight and tomorrow, 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, and 3 p.m. Sunday. Tickets range from $16 to $45, available by calling 216-241-6000.
Friday, January 30
Loganberry Books features tons of children's, women's, and fine arts tomes, but it's the massive collection of first editions and antique works that's really worth seeing. In fact, the store's gotten so huge that it needed to move a couple of blocks to a bigger space to house all its goodies. Explore the new digs at 13015 Larchmere Boulevard in Shaker Heights from 5 to 10 p.m. Refreshments, kids' activities, discussions, and book evaluations are all free today. Call 216-795-9800 for more info.
Saturday, January 31
Just what are Rabbits and Their Habits? For one thing, the furry mammals breed like, well, you know. For another, they help themselves to whatever they damn well please in our garden. But Rabbits and Their Habits is also the name of a program today at the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center. It includes stories, crafts, and a visit from a real-life bunny. The action takes place from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center, 28728 Wolf Road in Bay Village. Admission is free. Call 440-871-2900 for more info.
Like former Stray Cats bandmate Brian Setzer, Lee Rocker still prefers his rock and roll loud, sweaty, and a bit on the old side. His new album, Bulletproof, combines slap-bass-happy originals and Johnny Cash and Carl Perkins rockabilly covers. Rocker's clearly enamored of Sun Records, and he and his trio faithfully replicate that rockabilly sound. Live, they're even more ferocious, tearing through songs with speed and aplomb. Rocker's at the Beachland Ballroom (15711 Waterloo Road) at 9 tonight. Tickets are $10 and $12, available by calling 216-383-1124.
Sunday, February 1
Today marks one of God's greatest gifts to mankind -- Super Bowl Sunday. There are many options: You can stay home and eat Cheetos. You can invite friends over for a couple bags of Cheetos. You can even go to a pal's house for Cheetos. Then there's the Super Bowl Slam 2004 happening at Shula's Steak 2: In addition to the big game beamed on supersize TVs, there'll be a live auction, raffle, door prizes, and visits from former Browns players Herman Fontenot, Reggie Langhorne, and Cleo Miller. They'll recall their glory days and do their best to forget that they never played in a Super Bowl. (And hate on fellow guest Greg Pruitt, who does have a ring, thanks to his stint with the 1983 Raiders.) The party starts at 5:30 p.m. at Shula's Steak 2 at the Hilton South, 6200 Quarry Lane in Independence. Admission is free. Call 216-901-7852 for more info.
Monday, February 2
Yes, yes, y'all! Yes, yes, y'all! Time to Raise the Roof! The Great Lakes Science Center's new exhibit is all about the engineering dexterity required to make big stuff. It explores "the complexity of the science, technology, and culture that is behind every building," says spokesperson Melissa Mayher. "Buildings are not just thrown together. A ton of planning needs to be done before a building is erected. There are location, safety, function, and design concerns that all need to be addressed." Hands-on displays reveal the inner workings of doors, skyscrapers, and (yes, yes) roofs. "We spend 90 percent of our lives in buildings," Mayher says. "This exhibit urges us to get to know them." Raise the Roof! is at the Great Lakes Science Center (601 Erieside Avenue) through May 2. It's open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Admission is $5.95 to $7.95. Call 216-696-2000 for more info.
Tuesday, February 3
Spike Lee is one of our finest filmmakers. His last movie, 25th Hour, is an understated gem about conflicted folks stuck in no-win situations. It fits in snugly with the rest of his canon, which includes the splendid Do the Right Thing, Malcolm X, and Clockers. Also a dynamic activist and speaker, Lee is at Kent State University's Stark Campus tonight as part of the Artist Lecture Series. He'll talk about movies, political activism, and the line that fuses them. If you get a chance, be sure to ask what was up with that kooky battle he waged against Spike TV last year. Lee is at the KSU Stark Campus's Timken Great Hall (6000 Frank Avenue in Canton) at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free, but tickets are required. Call 330-499-9600 for more information.
Wednesday, February 4
With the class of 2004 preparing to move in, there are only a few weeks left to see the Rock Hall's 2003 Hall of Fame Inductees Exhibit. Some of the clothes, guitars, and handwritten songs from last year's bunch -- AC/DC, the Clash, Elvis Costello & the Attractions, the Police, and the Righteous Brothers -- will make their way to the permanent collection, but it's one of your final opportunities to see AC/DC and the Righteous Brothers hanging side by side. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (751 Erieside Avenue) is open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily (till 9 p.m. tonight). Admission ranges from $11 to $18. Call 216-515-1930 for more information.