Despite Theatre Three’s near death earlier this year, the 30-year-old City theater institution will be opening its season July 11 with Stephen Sondheim’s “Assassins”. The musical drama is based on John Wideman’s study of presidential assassins in America.

When Theatre Three’s $850,000 line-of-credit application was unsuccessful in May, artistic director Jac Alder made plans to arrange for subscribers to “spend” advance-sale tickets at other Dallas theaters.

But Alder says that following publicity surrounding the group’s financial problems, a different line-of-credit was arranged and the new, “less ambitious” initiative appears to be taking hold.

“We’ve re-staffed with interns and some board members pitching in,” Alder says.

Most productions will be three weeks, with the option to extend if a show is selling well, says Alder, who will be directing “Assassins”.

“Ours is the first staging of ‘Assassins’ since the New York production, and we’re excited to be doing it. John Wideman, the author of the book, is certainly coming to the opening, and we may even get Stephen Sondheim. We’re not sure yet.”

“Assassins” will run through Aug. 12; call 871-3300 for reservations.

Arts Calendar

July 1-Sept. 7 – “Whales: Giants of the Deep”, the first exhibit of life-size robotic whales, is up and spouting at the Science Place at Fair Park. Admission is $5.50 for adults, $2.50 for children and seniors. Call 428-5555 for information.

July 1-30 – “1992 Critics Choice” ninth annual juried showcase of outstanding area artists at D-Art Visual Center, 2917 Swiss. Admission is free; call 821-2533 for information.

July 1-12 – “Brigadoon”, the Larner and Lowe musical comedy classic about a magical Scottish village, starts TV’s John Schneider (“The Dukes of Hazard”) will be performed at the Music Hall in Fair Park Tuesdays through Sundays. Tickets range from $4-$40; call 369-3408 for information.

July 1-25 – Pegasus Theatre’s production of Jane Martin’s “Vital Signs” runs through July 25 at the theater, 3916 Main. Opening performance is at 8:15 p.m., with a champagne reception following the show, allowing the audience an opportunity to meet the cast. Performances are Wednesday through Saturday at 8:15 p.m., with Sunday matinees June 21, 28 & July 12, 19 at 5 p.m. Call the theater at 821-6005 or Rainbow Ticketmaster for tickets.

July 14 – “The Thrill of the Hunt” is a Deep Ellum Scavenger Hunt and Restaurant Sampling benefiting Pegasus Theatre, 3916 Main at Washington, from 7-9:30 p.m. The program involves searching through, and sampling the wares of, a dozen Deep Ellum restaurants. Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door; admission includes food. Call 821-6005 for information.

July 30-Aug. 15 – New Horizons Theatre Co. and the Bath House Cultural Center, 521 E. Lawther, present the Southwestern premiere of “A Narrow Bed” by Ellen McLaughlin. The 8 p.m. performances are scheduled July 30 (preview) and July 31 (opening night), with additional shows Thursday-Saturday through Aug. 15 (a 2 p.m. matinee is scheduled Aug. 15). Tickets are $10 Saturday evenings, $8 for all other shows.

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