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Thursday 17

GET MOUNTED. Mounted and Pinned. It's about butterflies ...

This one-act number from South Carolina playwright Sarah Hammond is really about feeling trapped, being in love and the trappings of being in love with jerks, freaks, skinny artists and lepidopterists (entomologists who specialize in the study of butterflies and moths).

See the world premiere of Mounted and Pinned performed by the crazy folks at Horror Unspeakable Productions, who brought you The Exiled.

The show starts at 8 tonight through Saturday at the Cabaret Theater at the Temple of Music and Art. Tickets cost $6. For tickets, or more information, call 884-4353.


Friday 18

WHO WANTS TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE? Every man in Pontevedro does when The Merry Widow is in town.

Come waltz with The Merry Widow as Arizona Opera--for the first time since 1985--presents this delightful Franz Lehar operetta. The production will be sung in English, with English surtitles projected above the stage.

The magic of turn-of-the-century Paris comes to life thanks to the incredible sets designed by Michael Yeargan. Evoking the opulent Art Nouveau style popular during the times, the sets contain the striking, decorative elements made famous by artists such as Aubrey Beardsley and Louis Comfort Tiffany.

The Merry Widow features Diane Alexander, who is enjoying a flourishing career with opera companies and orchestras around the country, and who will be remembered from Arizona Opera's last production of The Marriage of Figaro.

Performances begin at 7:30 tonight and Saturday, with a matinee scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday at the Tucson Convention Center Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave. Ticket cost $25 to $72. To order, call Ticketmaster at 321-1000 or the opera company at 293-4336. For more information, call 293-4336, ext. 16 or visit www.azopera.com.

REGGAE DANCING. Michael Rose, of Black Uhuru fame, joins a power slate of reggae musicians for a night that promises to make you want to move your dancing feet.

Rose, along with along local favorites Neon Prophet, Native Roots, One Blood Reggae Band and UpRoot, will perform tonight and Saturday. Organizers say it'll be two nights filled with "sound-pounding dancehall beats and dubs melded with roots reggae."

Doors open for both shows at 7 p.m. at Twelve Tribes Reggae Shop, 345 N. Fifth Ave. Advance tickets cost $20 each night. For more information, call 620-1810.


Saturday 19

THE PROOF'S ONSTAGE. The New York Daily News called the play "rich and compelling" and "full of life, laughter and hope."

Other theater critics have used similar phrases to describe David Auburn's Proof, one of the most celebrated plays on Broadway in recent years, winning both the Tony Award for Best Play and the Pulitzer Prize in drama for 2001.

Even as the sold-out Broadway run continues, Arizona Theatre Company is one of the first regional theaters to secure the rights to do an original production of Auburn's award-winning drama.

Proof, directed by ATC Associate Artistic Director Samantha K. Wyer, is about mathematicians, but it's more about what goes on in their hearts than in their heads. Auburn brings together four characters on the porch of an old Chicago home to explore the complex formulas of love, trust and fear that bind a family together, for better or worse.

It's the eve of Catherine's 25th birthday. Her father, a famous mathematician who in middle age slipped into dementia, has just died. Catherine dropped her own studies in math to spend the last five years taking care of him, and now must confront her own life head-on. How much of her father's genius--or madness--has she inherited?

Her sister Claire has flown into town to take care of her and Hal, a former student of her father's, has fallen in love with her. When Hal discovers a revolutionary new mathematical proof in the family's attic, the bonds between all three are tested to their limits as they search for the truth about the proof's author.

Wyer directed the Pulitzer winner Wit for ATC last season. Proof previews tonight and runs through February 9 at the Temple of Music and Art in downtown Tucson. Tickets range from $24 to $36 and are available at www.arizonatheatre.org or by calling the ATC box office at 622-2823. Discounts are available for students, seniors and the military, and anyone under 25 may purchase tickets for just $10. A pay-what-you-can performance starts at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.

STAR-STUNTED PERFORMANCE. Half dancer, half daredevil, choreographer Elizabeth Streb is famous for her spellbinding, gravity-defying pieces.

She's back, as the dancers of STREB celebrate spectacular feats of stunt artists in ActionHeroes, yet another acrobatic offering by her ultra-athletic dance company.

Flying, bouncing and crashing off surfaces like giant atomic particles in a supercollider, the company pays tribute to the stunt artists who have thrilled audiences from the fairground to the circus.

Inspired by the human body's power and potential, Streb has been choreographing dance works since 1979, forming STREB in 1985. Her choreography, which she calls "PopAction," blends the disciplines of dance and athletics, daring and strict precision in the pursuit of pure movement. The company often performs in challenging structures, forcing the dancers to adapt to the space with skill, pluck and wit.

Her company, STREB, has performed throughout the world, including at the Joyce Theater, the Serious Fun! Festival at Lincoln Center, the Festival International de la Nouvelle Danse de Montréal, Academy der Kunst in Berlin and the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris. STREB has also been featured on NBC's Weekend Today and CNN's Showbiz Today.

ActionHeroes begins at 8 tonight at the University of Arizona's Centennial Hall, 1020 E. University Blvd., just east of Park Avenue. Tickets cost $22 to $34, with student and staff discounts available. Box office hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Tickets also are available at www.tickets.com. For more information, call 621-3341.

EXQUISITE QUARTET. The Juilliard String Quartet has gained international acclaim for performances that are unfailingly characterized by clarity of structure, plasticity of line, compelling rhythmic drive and an extraordinary unanimity of purpose.

One of America's foremost chamber ensembles, with a repertoire of some 500 works, the quartet has truly defined the contours of the art form with its interpretations of works from Beethoven to Elliott Carter.

The quartet is back in Tucson tonight for the first of three performances of Bach's Art of the Fugue, which, according to quartet member Samuel Rhodes, "contains all of the intellectual devices possible to have: double and triple fugues, stretti of every kind, augmentation and diminution. ... The true miracle of Bach is that these intellectual aspects are not empty virtuoso devices but integral parts."

In addition to Rhodes on the viola, the quartet consists of violinists Joel Smirnoff and Ronald Copes and cellist Joel Krosnick. With a repertoire that includes compositions by Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms and Dvorák, the Juilliard String Quartet has a devoted following and is recognized as the "First Family" of chamber music in the United States.

It was the first ensemble to play all six Bartók quartets in this country, and it was through the group's performances that the quartets of Arnold Schoenberg were rescued from obscurity.

The Juilliard String Quartet performs at 8 p.m. tonight and Sunday, and at 3 p.m. Sunday at Crowder Hall, in the UA music building. All seats are reserved at $40. Box office hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Tickets also are available at www.uapresents.arizona.edu. For more information, call 621-3341. A free "arts encounter" will be held 45 minutes before each performance in a room adjacent to Crowder Hall.


Sunday 20

LISTEN TO A LEGEND. He's been credited with leading the way for jazz clarinetists from the exciting era of swing to the exhilarating age of bop.

Check out legendary clarinetist and bop king Buddy DeFranco in the Tucson Jazz Society's silver anniversary celebration--a concert tribute to the late John Denman

DeFranco has the unprecedented distinction of winning 20 Downbeat magazine awards, nine Metronome magazine awards and 16 Playboy All-Stars awards as the number-one jazz clarinetist in the world.

He has performed with the Gene Krupa, Charlie Barnet and Tommy Dorsey bands, among many others. He joined the Count Basie septet in 1950 and later led the Glenn Miller Orchestra.

He has performed and recorded with many jazz greats, including Billie Holiday, Nat King Cole, Billy Eckstine, Terry Gibbs, Art Blakey, Mel Tormé, Art Tatum and Oscar Peterson.

Gary Giddins, in Visions of Jazz, characterizes Buddy's work in the early '40s this way: "Almost all of the best young wind players--including such influential men as clarinetist Buddy DeFranco--emulated [Charlie] Parker's almost vibratoless, unmannered tonal production, his rhythmic and harmonic values, and his emphatically emotional melodic ideas."

The show starts at 7 tonight at the Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway Blvd. Tickets cost $25 for members, $40 for non-members and can be reserved by calling the Tucson Jazz Society at 903-1265.


Monday 21

SHARE THE DREAM. Take the kids downtown today to learn about Rosa Parks and celebrate Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday.

Special performances of King's "I Have a Dream" speech will be performed by members of the Tucson Poetry Society and kids will get cupcakes and the chance to make a peace crown they can show off to friends.

The event is from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at the museum, 200 S. Sixth Ave. Admission is $5.50 adults, $4.50 seniors and $3.50 children. Regular hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. For more information, call 792-9985, ext. 112.


Tuesday 22

UNABASHED SELF-SERVING PROMOTION DEPT. Sierra Vista artist Robert Wick is showing his bronze sculptures, sketches and hand-colored digital drawings at GOCAIA Gallery, 302 E. Congress St. The show runs through February 9.

This is where we completely suspend any pretense of objectivity and disclose that Wick is one of the owners of the publication you now hold in your hands. But he didn't order, or even ask, that we include this item. It simply found its way here on the merits of the artist's work.

Anyway, the stuff deserves a look, if only because we trust the taste exhibited in past exhibitions at GOCAIA, an acronym that stands for "Gallery of Contemporary and Indigenous Art."

The gallery opened in 1999 and its curator is esteemed University of Arizona art professor Moira Marti Geoffrion, also a sculptor herself and formerly the UA art department head.

Hobnob with Wick and nosh on appetizers at the artist's reception scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, January 19.

Regular gallery hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. Call 623-4588 for more details.


Wednesday 23

VOILA! VIOLA! Perhaps you've never met the viola, the Cinderella of the string family, a hard-working instrument overshadowed by the more glamorous violin and more assertive cello. Here's your chance, as violist Hong-Mei Xiao and pianist Rex Woods pair up for their third annual recital at the University of Arizona.

The two UA music faculty members have put together a kaleidoscopic program, from a set of old French dances by Marin Marais through the well-known A-flat Viola Sonata of Johannes Brahms, up to the present day. The late 20th century is represented by a sonata by prominent American composer George Rochberg, and bringing us up to date is Prelude and Fanatacism, completed last July by Hong-Mei Xiao's student Todd Gabriel.

The performance starts at 7:30 p.m. at Crowder Hall, in the UA music building, south of the pedestrian underpass on Speedway Boulevard just east of Park Avenue. Tickets cost $10 general, $8 for UA employees and seniors, $4 for students. For reservations, call 621-1162.

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