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Originally published Thursday, January 14, 2010 at 7:00 PM

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KUOW personalities start 'moving salon' to discuss performances

"KUOW's Front Row Center," a new Seattle performance-discussion group spearheaded by Dave Beck and Marcie Sillman, kicks off this weekend.

Seattle Times arts writer

Want a bookclublike experience tied into the performing arts?

KUOW 94.9 FM's Dave Beck and Marcie Sillman have come up with a forum program that takes in dance, theater, opera and music. It's called "KUOW's Front Row Center" and it kicks off on Sunday with a chat after the performance of Whim W'Him, the new dance company founded by Pacific Northwest Ballet's Olivier Wevers. (All Whim W'Him performances at On the Boards have sold out, but if you sign up for the wait-list, there's an off chance you can still get in; call 206-217-9888, day of show, after 3 p.m.).

If you don't make it to Whim W'Him, more "KUOW's Front Row Center" gatherings are scheduled through June. They include "Speech and Debate" at Seattle Repertory Theater (Feb. 6), "Three by Dove" at Pacific Northwest Ballet (March 19), "13 Ways to Look at a Blackbird" at Simple Measures (April 17), "Amelia" at Seattle Opera (May 19) and cellist Joshua Roman at Seattle Town Hall (June 10).

Taking part in "KUOW's Front Row Center" is free. And starting with "Speech and Debate" at Seattle Rep, it also nets you a discount to the shows. The idea, Sillman says, is to have a "moving salon."

Here's how it works: Go to, choose the event you'd like to attend and buy your ticket. After the performance, club members will assemble to discuss what they just saw.

Some of the logistics are still being worked out: Sillman's plan for Sunday is to stand up after Whim W'Him's performance and invite people to "come have a glass of wine, get loose and be provocative."

But there will soon be a place on KUOW's Web site where you can "enroll." Or you can call KUOW at 206-543-2710.

If you already have tickets to one of the events above, you can join discussions about it online. No formalities involved.

Michael Upchurch:

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