OC LIVE : Theater

“Kiss of the Spider Woman” continues to dazzle at the Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa. The 1993 Tony Award-winning musical--count ‘em, seven--is getting a first-class production in this national touring version.

Chita Rivera, who stars and who is reprising her original Tony-winning Broadway performance, is one reason this musical comes off so well. Others are an entertaining performance by Juan Chioran and a top-notch song-and-dance chorus. But it’s the score, the unusual story and the striking design that take stage center.

* What: “Kiss of the Spider Woman.”

* When: Thursday and Friday, 8 p.m.; Saturday, 2 and 8 p.m.; Sunday 2 and 7:30 p.m. Ends Sunday.


* Where: Orange County Performing Arts Center, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa.

* Whereabouts: Take the 405 Freeway to Bristol Street exit; north on Bristol, east on Town Center.

* Wherewithal: $19 to $49.50.

* Where to call: (714) 556-2787 or (714) 740-2000.


Lee Rocker made his name 15 years as a teen-aged rockabilly revivalist who plunked the bass fiddle for the Stray Cats. The native New Yorker, who now lives in Laguna Beach, is on to a new career phase as front man for Lee Rocker & Big Blue, a rockin’ trio that touches on rockabilly music but ranges widely through the roots-music tradition, incorporating straight blues and R & B. Two albums, a 1994 self-titled debut and the current “Atomic Boogie Hour,” showcase good original material and a hot and versatile instrumental unit as drummer Henree DeBaun and guitarist Mike Eldred team with Rocker.

* What: Lee Rocker & Big Blue.

* When: Friday at 8 p.m., with Hot Rod Lincoln and Ostracized.

* Where: Coach House, 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano.

* Whereabouts: Take the 5 Freeway to the Camino Capistrano exit and turn left onto Camino Capistrano. The Coach House is in the Esplanade Plaza.

* Wherewithal: $10.

* Where to call: (714) 496-8930.

Family Affair

Live birds of prey will flock to a family-oriented program by veterinarian Scott Weldy on Tuesday at the Orange County Natural History Museum. Weldy, director of the Orange County Bird of Prey Center, will use the birds, plus slides and discussion, in a behind-the-scenes look at the lengthy process of caring for ill and injured hawks.

* What: “Raptor Rehabilitation” program.

* When: Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.

* Where: Orange County Natural History Museum (27261 La Paz Road, Suite G, Laguna Niguel).

* Whereabouts: From the 5 Freeway, exit at La Paz Road and drive south. The museum is in the Plaza de La Paz retail center.

* Wherewithal: Free, but small donations are welcomed.

* Where to call: (714) 831-6625.


For years, Chris Bliss was just another world-class juggler who happened to open for Michael Jackson’s 1984 world tour. Now, after transforming himself into a headlining comedian, he retains only a part of his heritage, but what a part it is. For the final five minutes of his act, he puts on a pair of white gloves, replaces the spotlight with a black-light and juggles in sync with the Beatles’ “A Day in the Life.” The first part of the show isn’t bad, either.

* Who: Chris Bliss.

* When: Tonight at 8:30, Friday at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m., Saturday at 8 and 10:30 p.m. and Sunday at 8 p.m.

* Where: Irvine Improv, 4255 Campus Drive.

* Whereabouts: Take the 405 Freeway to the Jamboree Road exit and head south. Turn left onto Campus Drive. The club is in the Irvine Marketplace.

* Wherewithal: $8-$10.

* Where to call: (714) 854-5455.