KERA, FWO host forum for 'Before Night Falls'

Major props to the Fort Worth Opera. Their gay general director, Darren Woods, has routinely included very gay-friendly pieces — such as the Jake Heggie-Terrence McNally opera Dead Man Walking and the adaptation of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America — as part of the programming. This year’s festival, which begins late next month, includes the world premiere of Before Night Falls, about the life and death from AIDS of gay Cuban poet Reinaldo Arenas.

Before you see the opera — or revisit Julian Schnabel’s Oscar-nominated film of the same name with Javier Bardem — you might want to calendar a panel discussion, hosted by the FWO and KERA’s Art & Seek blog. Composer Jorge Martin, actors Wes Mason and Janice Hall, and costumer Claudia Stephens will discuss their approaches to the material at a free event at the Owen Arts Center on the SMU campus on May 12, starting at 7 p.m. and moderated by my nemesis Jerome Weeks. (Kidding.)

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Fort Worth Opera gets real(ity)

The Fort Worth Opera may be coming to a cable channel near you.

The company — the oldest continually operating opera troupe in Texas — recently won a competition to have a behind-the-scenes reality series made of their upcoming festival. Filming is beginning now with certain activities, many centered around the company’s gay general director, Darren Woods, who instituted the festival format a few years back.

Filming will ramp up in May, once the artists begin to arrive and the FWO has to put on three rotating shows — including the premiere of Before Night Falls about the gay poet Reinaldo Arenas — in less than a month.

No word yet on when — of even if — the series will eventually air.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones