Becoming a stepfather has turned William Mastrosimone -- a playwright known for focusing on violence -- into the theater world's Tipper Gore. The Hollywood heavy who won a Golden Globe for his work on the miniseries Sinatra has even said he was "on the verge of shutting the TV down for good" to protect his two young stepsons. Instead, Mastrosimone wrote another play: Like Totally Weird is a modern-day Frankenstein about two mall-raised teens who sneak into the home of a Hollywood producer to terrorize him (and his starlet girlfriend) by acting out scenes from his own graphic movies. Theater LaB Houston presents Mastrosimone's mea culpa -- a hit at the 1998 Humana Festival of New American Plays -- as the final production of its "Hollywood Theater" season. Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. through December 19, plus 6 p.m. Sunday performances on December 13 and 20. 1706 Alamo (off 2100 Houston Ave.), 868-7516. $18-$20.
Writer and actress Jo Harvey Allen came of age in the '70s making art with fellow Lubbock natives Joe Ely, Robert Earl Keen, Jimmy Dale Gilmore and her husband Terry Allen. She made it big with roles in Fried Green Tomatoes and The Client, but achieved her greatest success with the 1994 musical Chippy, based on the diaries of a prostitute in the '30s Texas Panhandle. Homerun is her casual and comic new solo performance about baseball and its parallels to the lives of four real women. Through Saturday, Nov. 14 at 8 p.m. DiverseWorks, 1117 East Freeway, 223-8346. $25; $20, students and seniors.
Kennedy, the artist formerly known as Nigel Kennedy (he didn't like his first name), is the British bad boy of classical music. The Julliard-trained violinist doesn't dress right (he once played the Berg Violin Concerto in a Dracula costume); he doesn't talk right (blabbing on about Jimi Hendrix and Frank Zappa as opposed to Mozart and Stravinsky); he's been denounced as a drug-taking menace to society (by Tory MPs); and he's even trashed a hotel room (in Berlin's Grand Hotel Esplanade). After chucking the whole classical concert thing for five years, he's back, performing Bartók, Bach, and a little Kennedy/
Hendrix mix featuring the themes from "Hey Joe," "Purple Haze," and "3rd Stone from the Sun." Who knows what he'll wear? 8 p.m. Aerial Theater, Bayou Place, 520 Texas Ave. For tickets, call 227-ARTS. $18-$45.
The Art Car Museum has opened again with one new photography exhibition for each month it was closed for renovations. "Bicycles to Bosnia" chronicles the art car and bicycle parade that several Houston-based art car artists brought to war-torn Mostar in 1997; Irvin Tepper's "Vehicles of Havana" is a photo-documentary of classic 1950s American automobiles, always out of gas but still well-cared for by their proud Cuban owners; and Dick Craig's "Private Rituals" captures the strange breed of art car fan who uses the parade as an annual opportunity to disguise himself in futuristic techno-gear. The museum is also adding several new cars to its permanent collection: Keep an eye out for commissioned drivable works by Mel Chin and Luis Jimenez. Wed.-Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. 140 Heights Blvd. Call 861-5526 for more information. Free.
If you've only heard of Carmina Burana, now's the time to hear it. Conductor Vance George, who won a Grammy in 1992 for his recording of Carl Orff's percussive, hedonistic masterpiece, will lead the 125-voice Houston Masterworks Chorus, the Houston Children's Chorus Chamber Choir and a 56-piece orchestra in the work tonight at Rice University's Stude Concert Hall. Carmina Burana is double-billed with an unaccompanied choral performance of Palestrina's spiritual Missa L'Homme Arme. 8 p.m. Stude Concert Hall, Rice University campus, entrance no. 8 off University Blvd. For tickets, call 529-8900. $20-$30.
The woman who exploded the Whitney is in town. Talk of Nicole Eisenman's infamous portrait of herself calmly painting the lone standing surface amidst the New York museum's ruins precedes most of her touring shows these days. Her latest piece, Behavior, is just as subversive if a little more whimsical. Laden with gendered innuendo, Behavior features Eisenman's fluid, cartoony drawing style in a mixed-media installation about an epic battle between flowers and bees. The flowers, you see, seek protection from the deadly bees (one major piece is entitled Big Angry Bee) by hiring an all-female S.W.A.T. team. The story unfolds as the S.W.A.T. team maps out tactical maneuvers with which to thwart the buzzers. Eisenman has said of the piece: "I would like visitors to pick up the narrative and follow it around like an opera." Tue.-Sat., 1-5 p.m.; Thu. until 8 p.m.; Sun., noon-5 p.m. Through December 13. Rice University Art Gallery, campus entrance no. 1 off Main, 527-6069. Free.
The eighth celebration of "Nuestra Palabra: Latino Writers Having Their Say" spotlights Roberto Rodriguez, nationally syndicated columnist and author of Justice: A Question of Race. Rodriguez will read from his new book Codex Tamanchuan: On Becoming Human and discuss the Pedro Oregón incident from a national perspective. "Nuestra Palabra" is hosted by Tony Diaz, founder, author of The Aztec Love God, and a visiting scholar at the University of Houston's Center for Mexican American Studies. Chapultapec, 813 Richmond. Call 867-8943 for more information. Free.