Thursday 23

HAUNTED BY GHOSTS. For a brief, moonlit moment, Jamie finds a place to escape his demons--in Josie's arms--and Josie finds a love and acceptance she only dreamed of, even if it won't last past dawn.

These are the woes, the joys, the dreams of two well-known characters of O'Neill's last autobiographical play, A Moon for the Misbegotten, exploring the ghosts of the Tyrone family.

Written in 1943, the play follows Jamie, the oldest son who now owns the family's tiny, run-down farm worked by Phil Hogan, an Irish immigrant with a penchant for drink and troublemaking. His strapping daughter Josie has a reputation for being a loose woman. The romance is haunted by family ghosts, Josie's sense of unworthiness and a rumor that Jamie's planning to sell the farm to outsiders.

Arizona Theater Company offers this Nobel Prize-winning playwright for the first time in five years. Jeanne Paulsen, last seen on Broadway in The Crucible, plays Josie. Jamie is played by James Carpenter who last appeared at ATC as Uncle Peck in How I Learned to Drive. Drew Snyder, as Phil Hogan, has had a long career on the New York stage.

The show continues through February 8. Tonight's is a preview performance and starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $26 to $30. The Temple of Music and Art is located at 330 S. Scott Ave. Call the box office at 622-2823 for show times and reservations.

Friday 24

CRUSIN' FOR A BRUISIN'. Mr. Dillinger was your typical gangster: self-indulgent, ruthless, greedy and able to shoot off his gun at random and without remorse. But more importantly, he's our famous gangster

On January 22, 1934, John Dillinger stayed, in style, at the Hotel Congress--conveniently located across from the train depot for what he thought would be a quick get-away. But he didn't plan on the fire that started in the hotel's basement. Nor did he anticipate a swift nabbing by the police.

Dillinger Days re-enacts his capture and a whole lot more. There are antique squad car shows, the original 1934 menu served at the Cup Café--his gang probably was darn hungry after they hauled their trunk of stolen cash up to their suite--tours of the historical hotel including the very room our gangster snoozed in, jazz music in the lobby, costumes and period-themed drinks, specifically the Dillinger Sidecar, voted Best Cocktail by Weekly readers.

The first re-enactment begins at 6 p.m. with a second show starting at 7:30 p.m. Tomorrow, stop by from 7 to 10 a.m. for the Cup Cafe's Railroad Breakfast, tour the old locomotive parked across the street at the depot from 9 to 10:30 a.m. and meander through the hotel with a guide at either 11 a.m. or 3 p.m. It's all free (unless, of course, you eat at The Cup or imbibe at the bar).

Hotel Congress is located at 311 E. Congress St. Dillinger Days is part of the Downtown at Dusk series. Questions? Call 622-8848.

Saturday 25

G'DAY, MATE. Visit the land down under. That would be Australia to those who are woefully geographically challenged.

Australia Day offers storytelling with folklorist Paul Taylor, a tour of the towering, 100-foot tall Eucalyptus Forest--including Mr. Big, a very tall tree with an 8-foot girth--and even a didgeridoo class, all at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park. The arboretum is home to one of North America's largest collections of Australian plants. Remember, much of Australia enjoys a similar desert climate to the Southwest.

The didgeridoo (it's as much fun to say as to play) is an indigenous Australian instrument with a haunting, drone of a sound. The workshop covers how to build as well as how to play the long, branch-like instrument. The class runs from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and costs $35 or $25 to Friends of the Arboretum. You must register at (520) 689-5248. Other Australia Day events start at 11 a.m. and go to 3 p.m. and admission costs $6 for adults, $3 for kids, 5 to 12.

The Arboretum is located at Highway 60, milepost 223, about 90 minutes north of Tucson. For details, call (520) 689-2811.

AN ITCH TO WRITE. When Aunt Bertha regales the same tales from her youth, do you find yourself saying, "Gee, that would make a great story?" Or are you a Calamity Jane, dying to turn your foibles into magical, literary gems? Whatever the case, two local authors with a plethora of storytelling and writing experience invite you to get out pen and paper and start writing those gems down.

Meg Files has taught creative writing for more than 25 years and currently teaches at Pima College. She also directs the Pima Writer's Workshop. She gathered ideas together and put them into her newest book, Write from Life--a practical book for would-be writers, a distillation of her own teaching and writing.

Lauren Smith is a long-time freelance writer and editor. In Unsent Letters she shows how to use the letter-writing form to resolve personal issues and to renew the spirit. "Sending the letters," she says "is optional." You're free to be nasty, expose the gaping wounds, get out your aggressions. Who you show it to is your business. You never know, though, when a masterpiece may sneak out.

The workshop explores how to choose a form for the story, find the best story to tell and methods of writing and revision. It starts at 2 p.m. at Reader's Oasis, 3400 E. Speedway Blvd. and it's free. Bring paper and pencil and plan to learn something that will help you with your writing and maybe even your emotional health. Call 319-7887 with your questions.

MY FAVORITE WORDS. There's something about the way they roll off your tongue. They usually are uttered in tandem. I'm talking about two words most people don't have a reason to stumble over--unless they're a numismatist or a philatelist.

Still stumped? Think coins and stamps.

The experts host two events this week to celebrate their numismatic or philatelic passions. The Tucson Coin Club boasts its 39th annual coin show this weekend. Amateurs and pros mingle at the Tucson Convention Center, 260 S. Church Ave. on Friday and today from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There's plenty of buying, selling and trading of not only coins, but the veritable stamps, postcards, tokens, currency, gold, silver and other collectibles. Bring your own treasures for free appraisals. If you donate a can of food to the Community Food Bank, you'll get a new state quarter for free.

At the same place and time as the coin show, ARIPEX 2003 presents its 45th annual stamp show--that's the Arizona Philatelic Exhibition. You'll find collectors and dealers from around the world plus meetings of stamp societies such as the U.S. Postal Service, the American Air Mail Society and the Wreck and Crash Mail Society. At noon on Friday, the new 10-cent American Clock stamp will be officially issued and at noon today, the Nurturing Love envelope will be placed on sale.

The hours for the stamp show are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and today and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow. Call 743-0429 for more information on stamps. For questions about coins, call 498-4615.

Sunday 26

SHOULD IT BE "COWPERSONS"? The Singing Wind Bookshop has its annual Cowboy Roundup. But someone seems to have infiltrated the press release as is evident by the bit of poetic terrorism: "cowboy" has been augmented in squiggly handwriting to include us cowgirls.

The day rounds up cowpersons who write about life on the Arizona range: H. Alan Day--famous for being the brother of Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor--reads from their collaborative book, Lazy B: Growing Up on a Cattle Ranch in the American Southwest. Barbara G. Nichols reads excerpts from her book, 75 Years of Gatherin': Recollections of a Cowboy's Life, which is about her husband. And returning this year is musician and author Dean Cook along with his brother James, master of historical tall tales and apparently the Official State Liar. He reads from his new book, Arizona Liar's Journal. For musical interludes, there's the Mike Ronstadt Trio performing western songs.

It all starts at 1 p.m. with music and readings. Singing Wind Bookshop is located near Benson. Take I-10 to exit 304 then go a half-mile east on Singing Wind Road. Call them with questions at (520) 586-2425.

THE PIANO'S FRIEND. In the case of the Arizona Friends of Chamber Music concert matinee series, Piano and Friends, it's the stately violin.

Joseph Lin began studying the violin when he was just 4 years old. He graduated from the Julliard School Pre-College Division and continued his violin studies at Harvard, graduating in 2000. He's already been recognized for his mature artistry, winning First Prize at the Concert Artists Guild Competition and named Presidential Scholar in the Arts--both in 1996. In 1999 he was the youngest musician to be chosen for the Pro Music's International Award.

Of his performance, reviewers extol his incandescent lyricism and shimmering energy. One even mused, "You want to rent an apartment upstairs from him just to eavesdrop on his practicing."

Pianist Tammy Lum is also a versatile performer with her own accolades. In 1990 she won the Leschetizky Foundation Competition and made her U.S. debut at Carnegie Hall that same year. She was also awarded first prize in the Competition of the Five Town Music and Arts foundation and the Young Keyboard Artists Association. A native of Hong Kong, Lum came to the States for college and graduate school and received her doctorate at the Manhattan School of Music.

Together these musicians create magic in a performance at 3 p.m. at the TCC's Leo Rich Theater, 260 S. Church Ave. On score for today's concert is work by Bach, Korngold, Franck and Dan Coleman. Tickets cost $15 or $5 for students. For more information, call 577-3769.

Monday 27

NEW WAVE MANIPULATION. No, it's not a new-fangled passive-aggressiveness for the 21st century. It's Jason Baney's description of his magic show.

Baney is a leader in innovative magic. From stage to TV, from Las Vegas to Shaghai, Baney builds a high-energy show using spray paint, coins and cards, magic, movement and music. Try to keep up with his hands.

Baney shows up for It's Magic at the Gaslight Theater at 7010 E. Broadway Blvd. tonight at 7 p.m. Comedy magician Justin Willman, hailing from Hollywood, joins him. Willman mixes magic, music and comedy to baffle his audiences. Apparently he tickles the funny bone like no other magician.

Tickets for the show cost $10 and are available at Williams Magic and Novelties at 6528 E. 22nd St. Call them at 790-4060 for details.

Tuesday 28

LOOK DEEPLY. Carolyn Lavender's drawings are connected to environmental and political issues. But you have to look deeper into the image to discover its meaning.

Each drawing may have up to 20 layers of obsessive grids juxtaposed with marks that provide actual physical depth. Making the work--and viewing it--becomes an evolutionary process as each layer is discerned, disappeared.

Lavender's work is being shown at the Louis Carlos Bernal Gallery--recently re-named for the late photographer and Pima Community College professor. She's joined by two other artists. Celeste Rehm's paintings and drawings address issues of environmental destruction and over-population. Meticulously rendered animals in surreal landscapes are metaphors for human existence. Her motives are twofold: to raise social responsibility for the humane treatment of animals and to be aware of our role in taking care of environmental resources.

John Poole's sculpture borrows freely from the people, places and things that surround him daily. He casts bronze figures out of found objects and finely crafted wood to comment on personal relationships and remembrances, to suggest surreal ideals. Look at his figures and come up with your own meaning.

The three show their work, appropriately, under the exhibit titled, Reactions. You can view the work from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesdays and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. The show continues through February 14. PCC West is located at 2202 W. Anklam Road. Call for information at 206-6942.

Wednesday 29

FINALLY, SHE'S HERE. Ellen Bryant Voigt was supposed to read in September 2001, at the Arizona Poetry Center's reading series. We all know how schedules got rearranged, lives reassembled, contexts remapped during that unforgettable month.

Tonight she finally appears as the first poet of the Spring Reading Series. Hers is a prolific voice in poetry circles. Voigt is author of Claiming Kin, The Forces of Plenty, The Lotus Flowers and her most recent, Shadow of Heaven. She's a poet as well as an editor and poetic scholar, educator and lecturer. With Gregory Orr, she co-edited Poets Teaching Poets, an anthology of craft essays. She also has a collection of her own poetics, The Flexible Lyric.

Voigt founded and directed the low-residency MFA writing program at Goddard College and teaches in its relocated incarnation at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina. Her poems have appeared in numerous magazines and literary journals and won such awards as the Pushcart Prize, Emily Clark Balch Award and the Hanes Poetry Award.

Voigt now lives in Vermont, where she just finished an intensive study on syntax in poetry. She'll offer insight on her research in a lecture tomorrow, Thursday, January 30. Tonight's reading starts at 8 p.m. in the Modern Languages Auditorium located just off Second Street near Mountain Avenue. Call 626-3765 for details on both the reading and the lecture.

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