Opera on film Director David McVicar set Handel's 1724 opera Julius Caesar in early 20th-century British-occupied Egypt for his 2005 production at the Glyndebourne Festival. A film of the opera, featuring outstanding performances by soprano Danielle de Niese as Cleopatra and contralto Sarah Connelly in the title role, screens at 12:30 p.m. at the Ambler Theater, 108 E. Butler Ave., Ambler. Tickets are $8.75. Call 215-345-7855.

Mel on stage Mel Brooks is a genius. Not so much a comic genius - though he is that - but a financial whiz for taking an offhand remark (that he was working on a new show called Springtime for Hitler, after working on a couple of Broadway flops) and turning the quip into the basis for The Producers, one of the funniest movies ever made, in 1967. And then, in 2001, he recast the movie as genuine Broadway hit (and, later, another movie). Brilliant! Not only that, but he hit a triple - with each permutation of two operators with a scam to make a fortune on a terrible show, he finds more funny scenes. The stage version of The Producers goes on at 2 and 7 p.m. today at the Walnut Street Theatre, 825 Walnut St., and continues on a Tuesday-through-Sunday schedule to July 19. Tickets are $10 to $70. Call 215-574-3550.

Two by Martins The Pennsylvania Ballet performs two works by the esteemed choreographer Peter Martins: the first, a restaging of August Bournonville's 1836 La Sylphide, the tale of magic and tragic love in the Scottish highlands that is one of the most venerable works in the classical repertoire. The second is Martins' 1988 Barber Violin Concerto, based on the composer's 1939 work. The program goes on at the Academy of Music, Broad and Locust Streets, at 2 p.m. today, 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and 2 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $24 to $129. Call 215-893-1999.


Smart pop Veteran Canadian punk-rocker Stephen McBean of Black Mountain takes a quieter, more lyrical path with his side project, Pink Mountaintops, playing reflective, textured chamber pop with a country edge. McBean and band play at 9 p.m. at Johnny Brenda's, 1201 N. Frankford Ave. Tickets are $10. Call 215-739-9684.


Mel on screen Mel Brooks followed up The Producers with 1974's Blazing Saddles, a deft satire of Western movies and racial prejudice, cowritten by Richard Pryor, that flirted with profundity while remaining enthusiastically lowbrow. The film screens at 7 p.m. at Bryn Mawr Film Institute, 824 W. Lancaster Ave., Bryn Mawr. Tickets are $9.50; $6.75 for seniors. Call 610-527-4008.

Drawn from life As the funny pages and comic books have evolved into graphic novels taking on larger themes while maintaining a cartoon look, several artists have emerged as top craftsmen. Here are two of the best: Seth, whose New York Times serial about an aging newsman, George Sprott (1894-1975), has just been released as a revised and expanded book, and slacker chronicler Adrian Tomine (Optic Nerve), who has most recently edited A Drifting Life, an autobiographical work by legendary manga artist Yoshihiro Tatsumi. The two discuss their work at 7:30 p.m. at the Free Library's Montgomery Auditorium, 19th and Vine Streets. Admission is free. Call 215-567-4341.


Low tones The bass virtuoso trio S.M.V. - Stanley Clarke, Marcus Miller, and Victor Wooten - plays at 8 p.m. at the Keswick Theatre, Easton Road and Keswick Avenue, Glenside. Tickets are $44.50. Call 215-572-7650.


Fairy tale In Robert Lepage's multimedia theater work The Andersen Project, a Québécois pop songwriter brought to France to work on a show about Hans Christian Andersen is caught up in a dreamlike drama incorporating the writer's dark tales and anecdotes from his Paris journals. The one-man show, starring Yves Jacques, goes on at the Merriam Theater, 250 S. Broad St., at 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday. Tickets are $38 and $48. Call 1-800-982-2787.

Friday & Saturday

Jazz time Singer Lynn Randall performs Swing Era standards at Crossing Vineyards, 1853 Wrightstown Rd., Washington Crossing, at 7 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $15; bring a lawn chair. Call 215-493-6500, Ext. 19. . . . Saxophonist Odean Pope and drummer Sunny Murray team at the Art Alliance, 251 S. 18th St., at 8 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $12. Call 215-545-4302. . . . The sensational singer Tessa Souter performs music from her dynamite new CD, Nights of Key Largo, at Chris' Jazz Cafe, 1421 Sansom St., at 8 and 10 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $20. Call 215-568-3131.

Top uke Renowned for his dexterity and daring, ukelele wizard Jake Shimabukuro is amazing whether he's playing Beatles or Bach. He performs at the Colonial Theatre, 227 Bridge St., Phoenixville, at 8 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $22 to $29.50. Call 610-917-0223.