DANCE ALL-STARS. There may still be time to see one of the all-time great dancers of the ballet world if you do something right now about getting a ticket. Mikhail Baryshnikov will step out onto the stage at 7:30 tonight at the TCC Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave.
The Russian-born ballet star soloed in the Kirov Ballet until he fled the Soviet Union in 1974 for the brighter lights and bigger purses of the West. He danced with major companies around the world, including New York City Ballet, and was artistic director of American Ballet Theatre during the 1980s. He started his own troupe, White Oak Dance Project in 1990, hiring all-star dance alumni of the best of the modern ballet troupes.
For its Tucson concert, says Michael Uthoff, artistic director of Ballet Arizona, the company will choose from its repertoire of modern ballet classics, which includes works by choreographers Cunningham, Tharpe and Morris as well as Jerome Robbins, Eliot Feld and others. Ticket prices are steep--$65, $55 and $40--but the concert is in part a benefit for Ballet Arizona. Tickets are available at Dillard's outlets or by calling Ballet Arizona at 1-602-381-1096.
PLAY BALL! With a powerful line-up that includes plenty of great talent, the Tucson Toros are in fine form this season. Take a look at some of tomorrow's all-stars and ease into summer in the cool evening air. Tonight, it's buck-beer night as the Tucson Toros take on the Albuquerque Dukes at 7 p.m. From the first pitch to 9 p.m., 16-ounce cups of cerveza are only $1. On Friday, May 5, the Toros wrap up the series against the Dukes at 7:30 p.m. with a big Cinco de Mayo bash, with everything from mariachis to a piñata-busting celebration on the field after the game. On Saturday, May 6, the team kicks off a four-game series against the Salt Lake City Buzz at 7:30 p.m., with free bats to the first 2,000 kids in the gate. Sunday's game against the Buzz begins at 6 p.m. and the games on Monday and Tuesday begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $3 to $6, with free tickets for Monday's game available at all Circle Ks. For more information call 325-2621.
THE CONVICT'S RETURN. This one- man show, written and performed by Geoff Hoyle, has been described by the San Francisco Examiner as "a journey into genius." With his "dexterous voice, Silly Putty body, chainsaw wit and cheeky attitude," Hoyle brings an irreverent host of characters to life in this mostly-true story of his attempt to make it big in New York City. The playwright/performer came to the U.S. from England in 1973, and shortly afterward joined the Pickle Family Circus, which may have been a perfectly appropriate introduction to American culture judging from the turmoil and trauma of the Big Apple personified in Convict's array of pushy agents, slimy TV producers and bizarre stage crews.
See one of the funniest men alive at 8 p.m. tonight and Saturday in the Temple of Music and Art Alice Holsclaw Theatre, 330 S. Scott Ave. Tickets range from $17 to $26, available at the ATC box office, 622-2823. The production continues through May 21.
PEOPLE WHO DO THAT. Tucson's dauntless sketch comedy group is back, with satire as twisted as the road to hell. Tonight's "sketch comedy for an anesthetized nation" unfolds in a new venue at DPC Café. This is an all-new show in the small, intimate setting of the café, where Spokesman of The People Derek Iversen pitches you can "drink coffee and laugh at the same time." Sounds dangerous, we said. "It is," enthuses Iversen, "It's gonna be great." We guarantee that nowhere else in town will get you a "Tribute to the Real World of MTV" dirge in honor of the OK City bombing, with a couple of dead-body sketches on the side. Live on the edge.
The People Who Do That will perform at 8 p.m. tonight and Saturday, May 6, at DPC Café, 546 N. Stone Ave. A $3 donation at the door is appreciated.
FOLK FEST. The waiting is over...the 10th annual Tucson Folk Festival hits downtown El Presidio Park, Church Avenue and Alameda Street, from noon to 10 p.m. today, and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday. Two stages will host continuous live music performances of contemporary folk, blues, bluegrass, folk-rock, ethnic, ragtime and gospel music. The festival will also be accented by food and craft booths and strolling vendors. Tucson Kitchen Musicians Association has also assembled an assortment of workshops, and a "Ballad Tree" for tune swaps. The Children's show begins today at noon with music and storytelling by Armour and Sturdevandt; and stick around for an old-time music play-a-long and dance. Sunday's events open with a Gospel Sing-along at 11 a.m. With free admission and parking to boot, this is a definite must for your weekend plans. Call 749-9770 for information.
FRESH DIRT. For those in search of an arts event to challenge the mind and senses, look no further than the UA art department's "new genre" performance art event, Fresh Dirt, featuring visual and performance pieces by some of the UA's most talented student artists.
Sample the dirt at 8 p.m. at the Tucson Center for the Performing Arts, 408 S. Sixth Ave. A $3 donation at the door is suggested. Call 622-2823 for information.
BEVEL'S BACK. The Mat Bevel Institute opens an all-new show this weekend, called Host of the Cosmic Toast. The poetry, performance and sculptures of artist Ned Schaper ensure that every performance will be an original. If you have a hard time visualizing kinetic sculptures choreographed to music, or the transformation of poetry and light into characters and musical instruments, head over to the Mat Bevel Institute at 211 S. Fremont Ave., and immerse yourself in this visual and auditory extravaganza. Tickets are $5, available at the door. Call 622-0192 for information and reservations. Performances will continue May 11 through 13.
GET STAGESTRUCK. The Bianco Theatre Company Children's Troupe presents Stagestruck, a musical comedy featuring the Brer Rabbit/Tarbaby sketch from "Song of the South," the Trible episode of Star Trek and a kinder, gentler western town spoof starring Billy the Lip, who's chosen the spoken word as his weapon in a showdown with the sheriff. With 55 young performers from Tucson-area elementary schools, no one can predict what gems their hard work on this production will yield. In keeping with Gaslight Theatre tradition, it's sure to be a wacky show full of surprises.
Stagestruck opens tonight at 8 p.m. at the Gaslight Theatre, 7010 E. Broadway. Call Bianco Theatre Company at 290-9108 for ticket information.
THE BEST MEDICINE. While we search for a cure, maybe laughter can see us through in this Tucson AIDS Project (TAP) benefit at Laffs Comedy Caffe. Hope, Healing and High Jinks is an evening of stand-up comedy and improvisation recognizing the joy and humor in life, in all its stages. The event highlights the 10th anniversary of the agency's service, which has provided support and assistance to more than 1,000 people with HIV/AIDS, 500 of whom have died. "It's an anniversary we had hoped we'd never have to celebrate," says TAP's Executive Director Craig Snow. "Our business has always been to go out of business."
Tickets for tonight's benefit range from $20 to $30, and include two drinks, hors d' oeuvres and a live or silent auction for donated items from restaurant gift certificates to fine art works. Laffs Comedy Caffe is located in the Broadway Village Center, 2900 E. Broadway. Call 322-6226 for tickets and information.
GECKO FEATS. It's hump day, and the prospect of waiting 'til 5 o'clock for a happy hour doesn't make the clock move any faster. You need to get out more. Brown-bag your lunch and head downtown to the Main Library plaza, 101 N. Stone Ave., from noon to 1 p.m. today for a free concert of environmental music by Chuck Koesters. Fresh air, warm sun and this musical weave of manmade and natural sounds will smooth out the wrinkles of the urban landscape and start the second half of the week on a positive note. Be sure to kick off your shoes and walk barefoot on the grass for good measure.
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