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ENTERTAINMENT NOTES: Arkansas Symphony Orchestra to perform live at Robinson Center

by Eric E. Harrison | April 29, 2021 at 1:44 a.m.
Arkansas Symphony concertmaster Andrew Irvin will be the violin soloist in Mozart’s “Sinfonia Concertante” with the orchestra Saturday and Sunday at Little Rock's Robinson Center Performance Hall. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette)

Elsewhere in entertainment, events and the arts:

Symphony Soloists

The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra hits the "Classical Heights" with works by Sergei Prokofiev and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in the fifth concert of the 2020-21 Stella Boyle Smith Masterworks Series, 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday before an in-person audience at Robinson Center Performance Hall, 426 W. Markham St. at Broadway, Little Rock.

Covid-19 protocols, including mask-wearing and social distancing, will be in place.

The program: Prokofiev's "Symphony No. 1," the "Classical"; Mozart's "Sinfonia Concertante" for violin, viola and orchestra in E-flat major, K.364, with concertmaster Andrew Irvin and Timothy MacDuff as violin and viola soloists, respectively; and the fourth and final movement of Mozart's "Symphony No. 41" in C major, K.550, "Jupiter."

Timothy MacDuff will be the viola soloist in Mozart’s “Sinfonia Concertante” with the orchestra Saturday and Sunday at Little Rock's Robinson Center Performance Hall. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette)
Timothy MacDuff will be the viola soloist in Mozart’s “Sinfonia Concertante” with the orchestra Saturday and Sunday at Little Rock's Robinson Center Performance Hall. (Special to the Democrat-Gazette)

The orchestra will also record the concert and stream it starting at 7:30 p.m. May 8 via its website,

"Live" and streaming tickets are "pay what you can" with a minimum donation of $10. Concert sponsor is the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Call (501) 666-1761, Extension 1.

Ballet at the Plaza

Ballet Arkansas will perform "Live at the Plaza," 1-2 p.m. and 7-8 p.m. Saturday at Argenta Plaza, 510 Main St., North Little Rock.

The educational and performance collaboration between Ballet Arkansas and the City of North Little Rock and its Convention & Visitors Bureau also includes morning recreational classes, sponsored by Acansa Arts Festival of the South. Find a complete schedule at There will be a second weekend of classes and performances on the plaza May 21-23.

The performance program includes Alice Klock and Florian Lochner's "Aperture" and works choreographed by Ballet Arkansas company members Hannah Bradshaw, Paul Tillman and Deanna Stanton, whose "Water Work" features the Argenta Plaza water wall.

Admission is free; some seating will be available but attendees are encouraged to take a lawn chair or a blanket. The plaza is part of the Argenta Outdoor Dining District; Argenta area restaurants will vend food and libations, alcoholic and otherwise, and patrons can carry them to the plaza.

Arkansas Department of Health covid-19 guidelines, including social distancing and wearing masks within 6 feet of another person, will be in place. Dancers will be masked and will maintain appropriate distance from audience members.

501 Day

Cities, towns, chambers of commerce, businesses and organizations throughout Central Arkansas are marking 501 Day Saturday with festivals, concerts, activities, get-togethers and other events to show "their 501 pride" for the region represented by the 501 area code. That includes the 501 Fest in the SoMa area of Little Rock, along Main Street south of Interstate 630, 11 a.m.-6 p.m., featuring entertainment, food, vendors and giveaways. For a full rundown of what's happening where, visit

Kaleidoscope film fest

Central Arkansas Pride's 2021 Kaleidoscope LGBTQ+ Film Festival, noon today-11:45 p.m. Sunday, includes 10 feature films and four "short' blocks with more than 25 short films. The virtual festival is free. A lineup of the films is available online at

May on Main

Live music, a chili cook-off, motorcycle poker run, games, inflatables and kids' activities are part of the inaugural May on Main event, 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Saturday on the Square in downtown El Dorado. Presenters are Main Street El Dorado and Murphy USA. Admission is free; some activities will require a small fee.

◼️ Chili cooks will compete for more than $2,000 in cash and prizes in three categories — Traditional Red, Homestyle and Verde — in an International Chili Society-sanctioned chili cook-off. Cooking starts at 9 a.m.; judging starts at noon and the public gets to taste the results from 1-4 p.m. (that are $10 to sample five separate pots of chili). The top three cooks get an invitation to the 54th World Championship Chili Cook-Off, Sept 17-21 in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

◼️ The Hog Wild Motorsports motorcycle Poker Run begins at 11:30 a.m. from the northeast corner of the Murphy USA parking lot on Jefferson Street. The last bike out will be at noon; all bikes must return by 1:30 p.m. Riders with the best poker hands will divide $1,000 in cash prizes.

◼️ In the Fun Zone for kids: inflatables, yard games featuring giant Jenga, giant Connect 4, kids Baggo and Big Wheel races, noon-1 p.m. For adults: the Epps Land Services Baggo Tournament ($10 entry fee), with a $250 first prize; and the Kilt Axe Throwing booth — $10 per game or 2 games for $15.

◼️ Festival food includes Flossie's funnel cakes, corn dogs, cotton candy, lemonade, snow cones and barbecue; downtown restaurants will also be serving.

◼️ Music starts at 12:30 p.m. with the Karla Case Band, followed by Brody McKinney at 2:15 p.m., Zach Abbott at 3 p.m. and Blackstrap at 4 p.m. Admission is free. The Allman Betts Band performs at 7:30 p.m. at the First Financial Music Hall, 101 E. Locust St. in the Murphy Arts District. Tickets are $40-$70; visit

Call (870) 862-4747 or visit

Students' artworks

The 2021 Annual Pine Bluff High School Exhibition, two-dimensional works in various media, goes on display today in the International Paper Gallery at the Arts & Science Center for Southeast Arkansas, 701 S. Main St., Pine Bluff. The exhibition will remain up through June 19. Sponsor is Pine Bluff Sand & Gravel Co. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. Admission is free. Call (870) 536-3375 or visit

Jonesboro festival

More than 50 vendors will line the streets of downtown Jonesboro selling art and handmade crafts, with area restaurants offering samples (plus a competition for crowd favorite) for the Oasis Arts and Eats Festival, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday. The festival will also feature live music and a cake/art silent auction. Visit the Forum Theater, 115 E. Monroe Ave., for an event map and to buy restaurant sample tickets — $1 (1-3 tickets per restaurant item). Find a schedule, digital map and complete list of participating vendors at

CORRECTION: Rain forecasts for Sunday May 2 have caused Ballet Arkansas to reschedule its “Live at the Plaza” Sunday classes and performances at Argenta Plaza, 510 Main Street, North Little Rock. Recreational classes and performances on Saturday, May 1 will go on as planned. The schedule changes were made after an item in Thursday’s Style section had gone to press.


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