Here’s an easy way to promote Columbia Classical Ballet’s “LifeChance: Gala of the Stars”: It’s the chance of a lifetime to see stars of the classical ballet world on a Columbia stage. World-class dancers from Boston Ballet and Washington Ballet will perform at the gala at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Elgin native Brooklyn Mack, now one of the most popular classically trained dancers in the world, fell in love with ballet when he saw a “LifeChance” performance years ago. Mack, who won a gold medal at the Varna International Ballet Competition in 2012, is now a member of Washington Ballet. Joining him from the company are Ayano Kimura, Tamas Krizsa and Maki Onuki.
Jeffrey and Lia Cirio, siblings and lauded principal dancers with the Boston Ballet, are returning again to perform in Columbia. Misa Kuranaga and Sabi Varga, also with Boston Ballet, will perform.
The program will include excerpts from well-known classical ballets as well as new pieces. “LifeChance” will benefit the Free Medical Clinic of Columbia. The Koger Center is at 1051 Greene St. $5-$32; www.capitoltickets.com or (803) 251-2222.
The Metropolitan Opera Auditions offers opera lovers a chance to hear the opera stars of tomorrow. Singers from around the country participate in state and regional competitions for the chance to sing on the Met’s stage in New York.
The South Carolina audition begins at 10 a.m. Saturday at Spears Music/Art Center on Columbia College’s campus. Three singers will be chosen to move on to the regional auditions in Atlanta by three judges certified by the Met. The regional winners will compete on the Met’s stage, and grand final winners will each receive $15,000 and exposure to the leading opera companies in the world. South Carolina’s David Daniels is a previous winner. In 2011, Maria Antunez, a Uruguay native and College of Charleston graduate, won the South Carolina and Atlanta auditions. After seeing her perform at the Met, Placido Domingo, a famous tenor and conductor, asked Antunez to join the Young Artist Program at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. She has since performed with the Los Angeles Opera and the Chinese National Opera.
Admission to the audition is free.
On Friday night, opera buffs can meet the audition judges at Carol and John Kososki’s Forest Lake home. Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served. 5225 Lakeshore Drive. $45; (803) 787-0287
if ART Gallery will open two simultaneous solo exhibitions Friday at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios. Both shows — “Laura Spong: Swinging On A High Note” and “Katie Walker: Words I Like” — will feature new work by abstract painters. Spong will show small and large paintings created in the last year, and the Greenville-based Walker will have new paintings “up to eight by nine feet in size as well as some 400 small works on paper of six by nine inches,” according to a press release. The small works are part of what Walker refers to as her “Journal Entries” series. One wonders what she has to say. The show runs through Feb. 5. The artist reception is from 6-9 p.m. Friday. Gallery 80808/Vista Studios is 808 Lady St.; (803) 238-2351
Even Elvis tribute performers will want to see the show that bills itself as “The Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Event.” “Elvis Lives,” a Broadway in Columbia production, will be staged at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday at the Koger Center. Is there such a thing as the ultimate Elvis? The show, a live musical journey through the King of Rock ’n’ Roll’s life, will feature finalists from Elvis Presley Enterprises’ worldwide Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest. The Koger Center is at 1051 Greene St. $47-$58; (803) 251-2222 or www.capitoltickets.com
Craft Bar Happy Hour, a crafting event at the Columbia Museum of Art that can be enjoyed by kids, teens and adults, will be held from 6-9 p.m. Tuesday Bring your own craft project or pick up a kit for $12 at the event. The museum is at Main and Hampton streets. $8-$12; www.columbiamuseum.org