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Culture Clash

Kevin Locke, Native Dance Ensemble
7 p.m., Friday, March 4
Centennial Hall
1020 E. University Blvd.
621-3341, uapresents.org

Kevin Locke is attempting to revive the lost traditions of Native American culture, one dance at a time. Audiences can expect a mix of singing, dancing and flute-playing that reveals the hidden culture of Native American society.

Seeking to represent the roles each human being plays in society, Locke will balance 28 spinning hoops for several minutes at a time to signify human responsibilities, while singing to the beat of traditional powwow drums. These long-established beliefs are from the Lakota Sioux people.

The hoop dance will also be accompanied by flute playing, a time-honored tradition of Native Americans. According to a press release, "Locke is acknowledged to be the pivotal force in the now powerful revival of the indigenous flute tradition, which teetered on the brink of extinction just 20 years ago." In 1990, the National Endowment for the Arts presented Locke with an award for being a "Master Traditional Artist who has contributed to the shaping of our artistic traditions and to preserving the cultural diversity of the United States."

Locke believes in unity of all human kind and wants to make the masses aware of "the Oneness we share as human beings," according to a press release. Locke has recorded 12 albums of music and stories since 1982 including The First Flute, Open Circle, Keepers of the Dream and Dream Catcher.

According to Ft. Wayne News-Sentinel, "When Locke (performs), time bends. Cultural barriers fall. People connect." Tickets range from $12 to $26 for general admission. Children, staff, faculty, students and senior tickets range from $10 to $21.

Better With Age

Maltby and Shire's Closer Than Ever
7 p.m., Friday, March 4; 7 p.m., Saturday, March 5 and 12; 3 p.m., Sunday, March 6 and 13
The Bisbee Women's Club
7 Ledge Ave., Bisbee
(520) 432-9976

Check out Bisbee's performance of Closer Than Ever, a 24-song variety show that pokes fun at the trials and tribulations of aging. Written by David Shire, who composed Big--the Musical in 1996, and Richard Maltby Jr., known for Miss Saigon in 1989, this revival of the 1989 off-Broadway hit is a performance about mid-life crises, love and fantasies.

Closer Than Ever, winner of the 1989 Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Off-Broadway Musical and Best Score, conveys touching and humorous accounts of changing relationships, aging, work and working out.

Bisbee residents may recognize the actors from the newly formed group, Up Your Alley Players, an assemblage of actors and musicians who have performed at the Bisbee Repertory Theatre and Theatre in the Gulch.

Maltby and Shire, both 30-year veterans of the biz, are well-known for their collaborations in the off-Broadway musical Starting Here, Starting Now ... in 1997. Maltby won a Tony Award in 1978 as an Outstanding Director for Ain't Misbehavin' and, so say the Closer Than Ever organizers, "is known for the 'fiendishly difficult' crosswords he contributes to Harper's Magazine." Shire won an Oscar in 1979 for the song "It Goes Like It Goes," on the sound track for the film Norma Rae by Jennifer Warms, and two Grammys for his contribution to the soundtrack for Saturday Night Fever.

Seating is limited, so advanced tickets are recommended. Tickets are $12 in advance at Atlanta's Music and Books, 38 Main St. Tickets will be $15 at the door.

In a Natural Light

Plein Air 2005
8 to 10 a.m., Saturday, March 5: Quick Draw Competition
7 to 10 p.m., Saturday, March 5: Gala and Awards Ceremony
March 6-29: Show
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
2021 N. Kinney Road
883-3024

Plein Air can be defined as "of or being a style of painting produced out of doors in natural light." For the past month or so, 60 plein air artists have been traveling throughout the Sonoran Desert from the region of Magdalena, Mexico to Mount Lemmon, using the landscape as insight for their artwork.

The plein air artists' mission is to create works that express their interpretations of the historic ranches, missions, buildings, animals and desertscapes they come across on their journey from the Grand Canyon to Baja Mexico.

For those who like more immediate gratification ... on your mark, get set, go! Artists in Plein Air's Quick Draw Competition will have two hours to paint using the exhibits and desert landscapes as inspiration. Terri Kelly Moyer, renowned studio painter and award-winning plein air artist, will judge.

Following the Quick Draw Competition is the Gala Awards Ceremony and Reception, in which $22,000 in cash will be awarded to Plein Air artists. The Grand Prize Award is $10,000, and other awards include the Maynard Dixon Award, the Sonoran Award and the Artists Choice Award for $1,000.

After the judging, the art pieces will be available for purchase by art collectors. Admission to the Quick Draw Competition is free with museum admission. Tickets for the Award Ceremony are $100.

A Look at Life

Wingspan Film Fest
March 8-9: The Screening Room
127 E. Congress St.
March 10-13: The Loft Cinema
3233 E. Speedway Blvd.
www.wingspan.org/filmfest

Wingspan is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its annual film festival with a six-day event that comes full circle with historical as well as contemporary accounts of LGBT life.

The event kicks off with back-to-back viewings of Before Stonewall, a look at gay life before the famous 1969 Stonewall riots, and Gay Pioneers, a documentary about the humble beginnings of what are now gay-pride rallies.

Christine Vachon, a producer famous for her films Poison (1991), Swoon (1992), One Hour Photo (2002) and A Dirty Shame (2004), will hold a question-and-answer session on Thursday night between showings of two of her films: Go Fish (1994) and I Shot Andy Warhol (1996). Vachon will share her opinions on the future of LGBT indie film as well as classic films.

The next two days offer a mix of men's and women's films, ranging from Straight Jacket, a film about a 1950s male Hollywood sex symbol compelled to marry a woman to conceal his identity, to April's Shower, a story about a woman hiding a secret that hinders her ability to organize her best friend's wedding shower. Another women's film, Girl Play, is, according to a press release, "the painfully funny love story raising the complicated question: What do you do when true love comes and you're already in 'the relationship?'"

All-inclusive pass is $45; individual tickets vary from $5.50-$8.50. For advanced tickets and a complete schedule, visit www.wingspan.org/filmfest.

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