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Arts picks: “The Night Alive,” Natalie Frank, Zilker musical

Jeanne Claire van Ryzin
Natalie Frank, “Rumpelstiltskin.”

FRIDAY

“As a Manner of Fact.” Artist Hiromi Tsuji Stringer draws on pages from a vintage copy of “Miss Manners’ Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior” to create witty visual representations of the miscommunications, linguistic gaffes and humorous mistakes that come about when moving from one language to another. Opening 7 to 10 p.m. Friday. Exhibit continues through Aug. 9. Grayduck Gallery, 2213 E. Cesar Chavez St. Free. grayduckgallery.com.

FRIDAY AND SATURDAY

“The Night Alive.” Hyde Park Theatre has crafted a niche with its consistently pitch-perfect takes on the contemporary seriocomedy. Now, the company presents Irish playwright Conor McPherson’s searing and slightly surreal tale of a lonely Irishman tries to help a struggling woman. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday through Aug. 8. Hyde Park Theatre, 511 W. 43rd St. $20-$24 (pay-what-you-wish on Thursdays). 512-479-7529, hydeparktheatre.org.

FRIDAY-SUNDAY

“Hairspray.” This summer’s musical in the park is the Tony Award-winning “Hairspray.” In 1960s Baltimore, a girl achieves her dream of performing on a TV dance show and in the process integrates the show. 8:30 Thursday-Sunday through Aug. 15. Zilker Hillside Theatre, Zilker Park. Free. zilker.org.

SATURDAY

“Natalie Frank: The Brothers Grimm.” A native Austinite now based in New York, the virtuosic and original painter Natalie Frank brings a wholly fresh, and feminist, take on the famous German fairy tales collected and written down by the Grimm brothers. Featured are more than 40 of Frank’s gouache and pastel drawings from the recently published volume of Grimm tales selected and illustrated by Frank.

Frank spent three years illustrating the book, selecting a few dozen tales that are most familiar in their sanitized versions — Cinderella, Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood, for example. But she also chose obscure and unsettling tales such as the Lettuce Donkey and the Ungrateful Son. With each, Frank’s very un-Disney and absurd style reveals the darkness and irrationality of the folk tales — stories that originated as oral narratives passed down by women.

Opens Saturday. Artist’s talk at 3 p.m. Saturday. Exhibit continues through Nov. 15. Blanton Museum of Art, 200 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. $5-$9. 512-471-7324, blantonmuseum.org

Brazilian Guitar Quartet. As part of the Austin Chamber Music Festival comes the 2011 Latin Grammy Award-winning foursome whose use of regular six-string guitars along with extended-range, eight-string guitars allows for a creative range of repertoire. For its Austin show — presented in partnership with Austin Classical Guitar — the quartet will spotlight music by Brazilian composer Heitor Villa Lobos in the first half of the program, before turning to Spanish classics by Manuel de Falla, Isaac Alberniz and others. 7:30 Saturday. AISD Performing Arts Center, 1500 Barbara Jordan Blvd. Tickets: $30–$50 in advance; $35–$55 at the door. 512-454-0026, austinchambermusic.org.