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LIONS, TIGERS AND BEARS. Never mind that Barnum & Bailey abandoned the Old Pueblo after whining about Tucson Convention Center fees. They've been replaced by more than 200 exotic animals and performers, and a tent bigger than Don Diamond's bankroll, as the Carson & Barnes Five-Ring Circus rolls into town.
Billed as the "world's biggest big top," this extravaganza features everything you'd expect, from growling tigers and roaring pachyderms to bittersweet clowns and cigar-chomping carnies. The action begins today with a free 6:30 a.m. tent raising at Rillito Park, 4502 N. First Ave. Regular performances are 4:30 and 7:30 p.m. today and tomorrow, 1:30 and 4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Advance tickets are $8, $4 for children ages 11 and under, and available at the Sabbar Shrine, Wal-Mart and the Oro Valley ABCO. Tickets are $1 more at the door. For information, call 624-2509.
RIGHTEOUS RAP. A loving portrait of an 80-year-old gal and her ongoing, feisty conversations with many and varied saints emerges in Pat Mora's latest poetry collection, Aunt Carmen's Book of Practical Saints. A resident of New Mexico, the author's been celebrated as "one of the most significant Chicana poets of our time" by The New Mexican.
Mora reads at 7 p.m. in Antigone Books, 411 N. Fourth Ave. For details, 792-3715.
SCREAM STREET. The Hotel Congress and Rialto Theatre visit the darkside--and fire up a musical maelstrom--when the Nightmare on Congress Street Neewollah Street Dance and Costume Contest oozes onto an entire downtown block.
Pagan-minded bands range from the Forbidden Pigs and James Dead to Al Perry, The Phantom Limbs and The Oblivians (from Memphis). Those haunted Rage in the Cage wrestlers are also slated for an appearance, and prizes will be awarded for the best costumes, with categories including "Most Mutilated Man," "Most Wounded Woman," and of course, "Most Original." Proceeds from this urban poltergeist fest go towards the Rialto's ongoing renovation project.
Advance tickets are $8, available at the Hotel Congress and Zia Record Exchange. Tickets are $10 at the door. No one under age 21 admitted. For details, call 622-8848.
FIRE FRIGHT. Today the Northwest Fire District turns up the creep-meter at a trio of Haunted Safe Houses. With horrific help from the Marana Police Department, school drama departments and an eerie coven of volunteers, these hotbeds of terror are "sure to scare the bravest of visitors," says Northwest spokeswoman Katy Heiden. Separate, no-fright fun rooms will be available for younger kids.
The free haunted houses are open from 6 to 10 p.m. at Station 30, 1520 W. Orange Grove Road; Station 34, 8165 N. Wade Road; and Station 36, 11901 W. Grier Road. Call 742-4749 for information.
LOVE BITES. The Prince of Darkness sinks his teeth into All Hallow's Eve with a vengeance in Tucson Parks and Recreation Community Theatre's production of Bram Stoker's Dracula. Take a little trip to Transylvannia, via Randolph Park, as the Grey family engages the Count in immortal combat.
Performances are 7:30 tonight through Saturday, and Thursday through Saturday, November 6 through 8, in the Randolph Recreation Center auditorium, 200 S. Alvernon Way. Admission is free. Call 791-4663 for details.
DEMENTED DESERT. Three master storytellers of the Southwest--Persephone, Gerard Tsonakwa and Martin Rivera--tingle spines with Twisted Tales From A Haunted Desert, presented by the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. And in honor of El Día de los Muertos, the weird tales will all have an Hispanic touch.
Event runs from 2:30 to 5 p.m. at the Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Road. Cost is included in the regular admission price of $8.95, $1.75 for children ages 6 through 12, free to children under age 6. For information, call 883-1380.
WHITE DOVE REDUX. The White Dove of the Desert has recently enjoyed a painstaking facelift and triumphant rejuvenation as the only remaining Mexican baroque church in the United States.
Now KUAT-TV, Channel 6, celebrates the lovely outpost's rebirth with Divine Mission, San Xavier del Bac. Linda Ronstadt narrates this fitting tribute to a Tucson treasure.
Divine Mission airs at 3 today, and 9 p.m. Wednesday, November 19, on Channel 6. Call 621-3354 for details.
ASANTE UP. The Gospel Music Workshop of America joins the Barbea Williams Performance Company for the Asante (Giving Thanks) Celebration. Held in conjunction with Downtown Saturday Night as part of the African American Celebration Series, this outing will showcase the workshop's rousing contemporary and traditional spirituals and freedom songs, as well as the Williams troupe's spiritual dances in lush white, purple and gold costumes. Event runs from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Ronstadt Transit Center.
Other DSN performances include the Juju Bey Ensemble from 8 to 10 p.m. in Arizona Alley, Gerry Glombecki from 7 to 10 p.m. in Fourth Avenue's Winsett Park, and the Rusty Boys from 7:30 to 10 p.m. on Pennington Street, between Scott and Sixth avenues. All events are free.
SONGS OF SCOTLAND. Though touted as Scotland's "most talented and well-known singer/songwriter," Dougie MacLean remains largely an undiscovered gem for American audiences. A prominent figure in the Celtic music revival launched back in the '70s, he may be more widely recognized as a former member of both Tannahill Weavers and Silly Wizard. Among his many songwriting credits over the past two decades are "Ready for the Storm" (recorded by the Grammy-winning Kathy Mattea in 1990), featured tracks for the film Last of the Mohicans, and "Caledonia," now considered a folk-standard among Celtic vocalists. He's touring to support a new release, Riof, which includes a rendition of the oft-requested "Feel So Near" that features Kathy Mattea.
Catch MacLean in his second Arizona appearance at 7 p.m. Sunday, November 2, at the Berger Performing Arts Center, 1200 W. Speedway. Tickets are $12 in advance, available at Hear's Music, Scot Photo and Piney Hollow. Call 881-3947 for reservations and information.
GREAT LINES. Come watch a whole herd of fleet-footed folks roll to glory at the Cactus Speed Classic inline 30k and 5k skating races. Or pull out your own wheels and hit the pavement. Both professional and recreational skaters will compete, with proceeds earmarked for scholarships for needy Pima Community College Students.
Registration runs from 7 to 8 a.m. at the Century Park Research Center, located on Wilmot Road one block south of Valencia Road. Race registration is $20. Admission is free for spectators. For details, call 744-3787.
INTERIOR BREEZES. Best known for performances under the stars, today Laszlo Veres and the Arizona Symphonic Winds move their considerable talents indoors for a wide-ranging concert.
On the musical roster are "Festival at Bagdad," from Rimsky-Korsakov's Sheherazade, "Blessed are They," from Brahm's German Requiem, a "Salute to American Jazz," and selections from Cats.
Performance is 3 p.m. in the Christ Community Church, 7801 E. Kenyon Drive. A $5 donation is requested. For information, call 577-2410.
VISIONS OF THE HINTERLAND. Peggy Kane's lifetime of art has taken her from classical to multi-media genres, from traditional study at the Art Students' League of New York to several commissions by the State of Delaware.
But these days, she pulls her inspiration from netherworlds--including the paranormal. "Myths, dreams, extraterrestrial gods and goddesses and environmental issues are the themes that captivate my interest," she says. "I am now researching and working on a series of paintings of gods and godesses from mythologies around the world, emphasizing their extraterrestrial origins...Hopefully, this will impart a greater understanding of our true history and our incredible future."
Kane's latest exhibit, Alien Ancestors...Gods, Goddesses and Powerful Beings From Elsewhere, opens today with a reception from noon to 1:30 p.m. in the Kaleidoscope Fine Arts Gallery at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Northwest Tucson, 3601 W. Cromwell Road. Regular gallery hours are 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 10 a.m. to noon Sunday. For information, call 615-8625.
DARK FRONTIER. The only play to win a Pulitzer Prize before its New York opening, The Kentucky Cycle is a haunting exploration of the darker realities associated with the frontier myth that America offers unlimited land for personal gain, without regard for future generations.
Composed in the tradition of the Greek cycle plays and Shakespeare's history plays, this epic sprawls from 1775 to 1975, following the sagas of three fictional, blood-related Appalachian families over two centuries of war, blood feuds, land speculations and union battles in the coal-mining industry.
Performed in two parts in rotating repertory, Part One previews at 7:30 tonight, with evening and matinee performances continuing Wednesday">Wednesday through Saturday, through December 5.
All performances are in the UA Marroney Theater, located at the south end of the pedestrian underpass on Speedway east of Park Avenue. Tickets are $10, $8 for seniors and UA employees, $7 for students, and $5 for previews. Tickets must be purchased separately for each performance, and are available at the UA Fine Arts box office. Call 621-1162 for information.
IN REMISSION. Just like those it commemorates, the holiday of Día de los Muertos will never fade. Every year, in fact, seemingly more celebrations, demonstrations and displays mark its passing. And now the Tucson/Pima Arts Council gets into the act with a new group exhibit titled--you guessed it--Día de los Muertos.
Consisting of juried pieces by a variety of top local and Mexican artists, the show includes several media, ranging from sculpture and works on paper to mixed-media paintings and altars.
Día de los Muertos is on display through November 28 at the T/PAC Community Gallery, 240 N. Stone Ave. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For details, call 624-0595.
STAGGERING VISION. You may know him as the talented creator of that incisive Tucson Weekly comic strip, Staggering Heights. But showing that there's far more to the indomitable Joe Forkan than an exacto knife and a fifth of Old Crow, now you can also enjoy an exhibit of his latest canvases on display in the Raw Gallery.
The ambitious show includes paintings in oils and acrylics, and monotypes on paper. Sweeping and lush in movement, they reveal classic tones underscoring often haunting images.
Exhibit runs through November 22 in the Raw Gallery, 43 S. Sixth Ave. Hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, during Downtown Saturday Night and Thursday evening Art Walk.
BIG PICTURE. Check it out: Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn are all visible in the sky one hour after sunset throughout November. And those ever-helpful folks at the UA Flandrau Science Center want to help you rest your gaze upon one of these heavenly bodies.
They're offering free use of a 16-inch telescope. And you better take them up on it: The four brightest planets in the nighttime sky won't stage a reunion tour until 2002.
Viewing hours are 7 to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, weather permitting, in the Flandrau Science Center, located on the UA Mall at the corner of University Boulevard and Cherry Avenue. Call 621-4515 for information.
City Week includes events selected by Calendar Editor Tim Vanderpool. Event information is accurate as of press time. The Weekly recommends calling event organizers to check for last-minute changes in location, time, price, etc. To have material considered, please send complete information at least 11 days prior to the Thursday issue date to: Tucson Weekly, P.O. Box 2429, Tucson, Arizona 85702, or fax information to 792-2096, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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