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Arts: the week ahead

SAMUEL BAK: ADAM & EVE The painter applies Renaissance ideals to the moral perplexities of his lifetime. Bak, who has made the Holocaust a theme, here depicts Adam and Eve expelled from Eden and grappling with God as a postwar relic. Pictured: detail of “Adam and Eve and The Memory of Smoke.’’ Through Sept. 12. Pucker Gallery, 171 Newbury St. 617-267-9473, www.puckergallery.com SAMUEL BAK: ADAM & EVE The painter applies Renaissance ideals to the moral perplexities of his lifetime. Bak, who has made the Holocaust a theme, here depicts Adam and Eve expelled from Eden and grappling with God as a postwar relic. Pictured: detail of “Adam and Eve and The Memory of Smoke.’’ Through Sept. 12. Pucker Gallery, 171 Newbury St. 617-267-9473, www.puckergallery.com
July 28, 2011

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THEATER

A DOLL’S HOUSE Lily Rabe gives an electric performance as Nora, a woman to reckon with right from the start of this contemporized version of Ibsen’s landmark drama. Through July 31. Williamstown Theatre Festival, Nikos Stage, Williamstown. 413-597-3400, www.wtfestival.org

MORMONS, MOTHERS AND MONSTERS This quirky autobiographical musical by 23-year-old Sam Salmond (collaborating with Will Aronson) is glib and scattershot at times, but there is raw anguish at its heart. Through July 31. Barrington Stage Company’s Stage 2, Pittsfield. 413-236-8888, www.barringtonstageco.org

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT A well-acted and penetrating production, starring Chad Hoeppner as the tormented murderer Raskolnikov and Steve Hendrickson as the police inspector who engages him in a cat-and-mouse game. Through July 31. Chester Theatre Company, Chester. 413-354-7771, www.chestertheatre.org

MATT & BEN The script for “Good Will Hunting’’ falls from the heavens in this enjoyably antic spoof of our local lads by Mindy Kaling and Brenda Withers, starring Philana Mia as Damon and the chameleonic Marianna Bassham as Affleck. Through Aug. 14. Central Square Theater, Cambridge. 866-811-4111, www.centralsquaretheater.org

SYLVIA A stellar production of a comedy by A.R. Gurney that asks whether a marriage can survive when the Other Woman is a dog. Rachel Bay Jones is marvelously adept as the disruptive but winsome pooch of the title. Through Saturday. Presented by Berkshire Theatre Group. Fitzpatrick Main Stage, Stockbridge. 413-298-5576, www.berkshiretheatre.org

AS YOU LIKE IT Director Tony Simotes sends waves of physical comedy across the stage while ensuring that the gleaming jewels of Shakespeare’s language are not submerged in the process. Through Sept. 4. Shakespeare & Company, Founders’ Theatre, Lenox. 413-637-3353, www.shakespeare.org

THE MEMORY OF WATER A smart and piercing, if overstuffed comedy-drama about the ripple effects of loss. Three sisters (well played by Corinna May, Kristin Wold, and Elizabeth Aspenlieder) sift through their own lives, the intricacies of their relationships to one another, and the enduring puzzle of their newly deceased mother. Through Sept. 4. Presented by Shakespeare & Company. At Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre, Lenox. 413-637-3353, www.shakespeare.org

DON AUCOIN

DANCE

SUMMER STAGES DANCE AT CONCORD ACADEMY’S 15TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION It seems like only yesterday that this ambitious little festival leapt onto the area’s summer dance scene, and now it’s the main local attraction for Boston contemporary dance lovers. This special concert and benefit reception features the eclectic virtuosity of the 20-member Philadelphia-based hip-hop troupe Illstyle & Peace Productions, with cofounder Brandon “Peace’’ Albright. The program includes the Boston premiere of “IMpossible, IZZpossible.’’ July 28. $50 ($150 for concert and post-concert reception). Concord Academy’s Performing Arts Center, Concord. 978-402-2339, www.summerstagesdance.org

DAVID PARKER & THE BANG GROUP Summer Stages continues its fruitful collaboration with the Institute of Contemporary Art in “Backward and in Heels,’’ a family-oriented program of dances exhibiting the Bang Group’s trademark rhythm play and clever wit. The free noon concert is followed at 3:30 p.m. by the Choreographers’ Project Showcase ($20-$25), featuring four new works by fellows of the Summer Stages Choreographers’ Project as well as choreography by Edisa Weeks. July 30. ICA. 978-402-2339, www.summerstagesdance.org

JACOB’S PILLOW DANCE FESTIVAL Shin Chang Ho’s athletically charged LDP/Laboratory Dance Project storms into the Ted Shawn Theatre this weekend with its wide-ranging, high octane dance fusion, while the Doris Duke Theatre hosts the US premiere of Big Dance Theater’s “Supernatural Wife.’’ The Annie-B Parson/Paul Lazar collaboration is based on the Greek tragedy of Alcestis. July 28-31. $10-$64.50. Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Becket. 413-243-0745, www.jacobspillow.org

WINDHOVER’S ANNUAL SUMMER DANCE CONCERT New York City-based Dusan Tynek Dance Theatre is the guest headliner for this festival event with two new pieces, “Transparent Walls’’ and “Widow’s Walk,’’ as well as excerpts from Purcell’s irreverent opera “The Fairy Queen.’’ The outdoor concert also features Forty Steps Dance of Nahant in two recent pieces and a reprise of the 2001 “Fragile,’’ dedicated to the victims and heroes of 9/11. July 29-31. $15-$20. Windhover Center for the Performing Arts, Rockport. 978-546-3611, www.windhover.org

KAREN CAMPBELL

GALLERIES

SPACE/LIGHT/CITY Four artists explore fictional and scientific space. Wade Aaron’s constructions liberate architectural plans from the drawing board. Linda Schlosberg uses tiny brush strokes to convey electrical currents and magnetic forces. Kenji Nakayama and Dana Woulfe make works that balance chaos and order. Through Oct. 7. 167A Massachusetts Ave., Arlington. 781-641-3333, www.13forest.com

CHAIN LETTER Samson owner Camilo Alvarez invited 10 artists to exhibit, and they each invited 10 artists, and so on. The result: a show with hundreds of artworks from around the world, on view, according to Alvarez, “until the work leaves the gallery.’’ Closing date TBD. Samson, 450 Harrison Ave. 617-357-7177, www.samsonprojects.com

FIGURAL Kevin Rita curates this show featuring works of five figurative painters: Chuck Bowdish’s idyllic dreamscapes; Katherine Bradford’s quirky canvases about predicaments; Kurt Knobelsdorf’s emotionally charged, lonely scenes; Sam McKinniss’s sensuous, romantic paintings; and social commentaries steeped in art history by Tabitha Vevers. Through Aug. 11. DNA Gallery, 288 Bradford St., Provincetown. 508-487-7700, www.dnagallery.com

CATE McQUAID

MUSEUMS

EDWARD HOPPER’S MAINE The first exhibition to focus on the paintings, prints, and drawings Hopper produced on his summer visits to Maine. Through Oct. 16. Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, Maine. 207-725-3275, www.bowdoin.edu/art-museum

MAN RAY-LEE MILLER, PARTNERS IN SURREALISM Photographs, paintings, sculpture, and drawings by, or relating to, these two artists who were teacher and student, then lovers. Through Dec. 4. Peabody Essex Museum, Salem. 978-745-9500, www.pem.org

PISSARRO’S PEOPLE The rarely exhibited portraits and figure paintings of this beloved artist, a central figure in Impressionism. Through Oct. 2. The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown. 413-458-2303, www.clarkart.edu

URSULA VON RYDINGSVARD: SCULPTURE A career survey of monumental wood sculptures by this acclaimed German-born, New York-based artist. Through Aug. 28. DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln. 781-259-8355, www.decordova.org

SEBASTIAN SMEE