Opera in HD, A Wedding Murder Mystery, and Peking Acrobats

Opera/FilmMetropolitan Opera: Live in HDThe hiring of Peter Gelb to run the Metropolitan Opera in New York City raised eyebrows—as the head of Sony's classical recording department, he'd been known to favor middlebrow (at best) projects like film soundtracks and Andrea Bocelli–style pop crossover. But he's launched several interesting new initiatives at the company and is adamant about bringing the Met's productions to a wider public while preserving their quality: putting the hay down where the goats can get it, but not replacing the hay with AstroTurf. The most exciting new project is basically an expansion of the Met's decades-old tradition of broadcasting its Saturday afternoon matinees into America's radios—certain matinees will be projected via satellite into movie theaters equipped with high-definition projection systems. Imagine being able to pop down to the Bijou to watch a Met performance live on a big screen. (You can, at least, if you live in Auburn; no theaters in Seattle proper have yet signed up for the project.) The first broadcast will be of Bellini's I puritani (an Italian take on English history), starring "it" diva Anna Netrebko. The Bella Bottega 11 theaters in Redmond will be a second outlet, starting Jan. 13 with the newly commissioned The First Emperor by Tan Dun, starring Placido Domingo. Auburn 17 Theaters, 1110 Supermall Way, Auburn, 253-735-6721. $15–$18. 10:30 a.m. GAVIN BORCHERTBooksDeborah DonnellyIt's probably happened to you or a close friend: The local major-league baseball team foots the bill for the star catcher's wedding to the goth singing sensation. The engagement party is at the ballyard, and of course, someone is murdered. Boris the Mad Russian Florist is accused, but the wedding planner believes he is innocent and sets out to prove it. Now, let's suspend our suspension of disbelief. Bride and Doomis the sixth installment of Deborah Donnelly's mystery series starring Carnegie Kincaid, Seattle's wedding planner/sleuth. In this particular mystery, not only is Kincaid distracted by the goth singer's nom de stage, Honeysuckle Hell, she also has to plan her own wedding while trying to catch the murderer. You need to know what happens next in this charmingly fun bit of entertainment. Donnelly, a longtime Seattle resident who recently settled in Portland, will be here to sign her book, and perhaps discuss your menu and color choices.Seattle Mystery Book Shop, 117 Cherry St., 587-5737, Free. Noon.JOANNE GARRETTDancePeking Acrobats All of us—well, most of us—can bend over forward and touch our toes, but very few can do it backward. And then walk their hands up their calves. Most of us can toss a ball in the air, stand on one foot, ride a bike; almost none of us can do all three at once, blindfolded. Chinese acrobatics take these everyday skills to extremes, playing them out in a world where it seems that human beings have a few extra joints in their spines and arms, and the law of gravity is really more a guideline; the rest of us are just gobsmacked, watching. Kirkland Performance Center, 350 Kirkland Ave., Kirkland, 425-893-9900, $20–$34. 3 and 7:30 p.m. (Also 7:30 p.m. Sun., Jan. 7.) SANDRA KURTZ

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