'War of the Worlds'

Montana Repertory Theatre's Hudson Therriault, left, and Jeremy Sher rehearse a scene for "War of the Worlds" performance at Masquer Theatre recently. The play is based on the original 1938 radio play by Howard E. Koch and narrated by Orson Welles.

Here's a quick guide to some events happening around Missoula this week. For First Friday art openings, head to this week's listings.

Veterans Art Workshop at the MAM

(Saturday, Feb. 8)

Veterans can attend a free art workshop at the Missoula Art Museum, including art-making and movement. Attendees will explore an exhibition, "Things You Know But Cannot Explain," a survey of art by the late Rick Bartow, a veteran who channeled his post-traumatic stress into expressionistic paintings and sculpture. Mindfulness teacher Kate Crouch and artist Jeff Brown will lead the experience, which runs from 1-3 p.m. For more information, call 728-0447 or go to missoulaartmuseum.org.

Valentine's Drag Show

(Saturday, Feb. 8)

Valentine's is coming early with a themed drag show at the Zootown Arts Community Center's Show Room. 

Enjoy treats from the Bakery, check out a duet lip-sync competition, and the usual creatively attired performances. 

Those interested in performing can email Sophia Stone Valhallan at bakery42.productions@gmail.com.

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30. All ages, admission is $7, or $5 for pairs of two.

Montana Rep's 'War of the Worlds'

(Saturday-Sunday, Feb. 8-9)

It's your last weekend to get to see "The War of the Worlds" in a brave new re-creation by the Montana Repertory Theatre for its annual touring production.

A contemporary setting, costuming, design and message have been pulled from the original source: the 1938 radio play, written by Howard E. Koch from H.G. Wells' alien invasion novel, and performed live on the air by Orson Welles and the Mercury Theatre.

In director Caitlin O'Connell's vision, a cast of professional actors, both New York and Missoula, portray survivors of a mysterious, modern-day catastrophe. On the run from an unseen threat, they use all manner of gadgets and objects to create the sound effects and dialogue of Wells' version as a message to other survivors. 

While the idea of a radio play, performed live on stage, may seem static, the Rep's take is a visual and kinetic experience, as the cast scurry about on stage to conjure the audio portion. It breezes by in rough 75 minutes, with a post-invasion coda that's moving and humane, and far removed from vintage sci-fi kitsch that the title may bring to mind.

Showtimes are Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Montana Theatre in the PAR/TV Building at UM. Tickets are $25 regular or $10 for children 12 and under. Go to montanarep.org.

Comedian Shayne Smith at the Rialto

(Thursday, Feb. 13)

YouTube comedian Shayne Smith, a Utah native now in New York, is heading to Deer Lodge for a performance at the historic Rialto Theatre. For those who do not find profanity funny, it's billed as "clean comedy," with local act The Cutler Brothers opening.

Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door, available at Valley Foods and Keystone Family Pharmacy in Deer Lodge, Steele’s in Butte and Deer Lodge, at the Rialto, and deerlodgerialto.com.