E. ANNIE PROULX. The man had a passion for fruit. Quoyle remembered purple-brown seckle pears the size and shape of figs, his father taking the meat off with pecking bites, the smell of fruit in their house, litter of cores and peels in the ashtrays, the grape cluster skeletons, peach stones like hens' brains on the windowsill.
It is with this detailed, exquisite punch that E. Annie Proulx captured the popular market with her book The Shipping News and threw the long-time writer into the limelight of readings, interviews and signings, leading her to complain that it was beginning to gobble up her writing time. She won the Pulitzer Prize, left her native Vermont and now calls Wyoming her residence, where she is working on her next book, Accordion Crimes.
Tucson gets a chance to hear author Proulx speak at 8 tonight at the Tucson Public Library, 101 N. Stone Ave. The talk is free, with thanks for that going to the Arizona Humanities Council. See Margaret Regan's discussion of Proulx's work in this issue's "Review" section.
TAMMIES SHOWCASE. Just back from the South by Southwest Music Conference in Austin, Tucson Area Music Awards Executive Director Carol Anderson is even more excited about the TAMMIE's Showcase Shuffle, featuring music from chicken scratch to blues.
"I was comparing, in no small way, the music at SXSW to our event here, and because of the extraordinary quality of our musicians, our festival is right up there with theirs."
In our town more than 80 groups will be on four outdoor and 14 indoor stages for $10 over a two-day period. It's what Anderson calls "the most amazing deal of the century."
"We're celebrating the diversity and excellence of local music with this event," she says. "What's really exciting is that a lot of top name record companies will be here," and one of her goals is to see them sign some of our local groups.
Get your entry wristband at any Zia Records outlet or participating music venue tonight or tomorrow. Check the schedule in this issue of The Weekly to see which groups you want to see and maybe vote on. Call 792-3630 for more information.
POETRY FESTIVAL. Three days of poetry get under way beginning tonight with readings by festival poets Jane Miller and Rafael Campo at 8 p.m. An informal reception will follow at 10 p.m. at Café Magritte, 254 E. Congress St.
This year's festival takes on what organizers call "one of the oldest and most prevalent themes in literature: Love." This, they say, is not the sweetie hearts and flowers love, but a long, hard look at what love is "at the end of the 20th century."
Readings will take place at the Tucson Center for the Performing Arts, 408 S. Sixth Ave. For more information and a profile of poet Boyer Rickel see the Review section this issue, or call 321-2163.
CENTRAL ARTS FUN. It's a fundraiser of comfortable proportions--say something along the lines of "Sofa Size"--which is exactly what Central Arts' April Fool's Day event is called.
The event, billed as "an evening of wacky entertainment" certainly will be, with the Little Dinks back from the land of who-remembers-where performing their sub-standards like "Whole Lotta Love." Trust us here, this group is legendary in the downtown reservoirs of this city. Dink member Dan Buckley, a music critic for a nearly daily local newspaper, serves as the auctioneer for this fun fundraising gig.
At tonight's auction, gallery manager Ned Gray is hoping you'll help find homes for really sumptuous works of art culled from several Tucson collections.
Central Arts is at 188 E. Broadway. Festivities rage from 6 to 9 p.m. There's good eats too. Admission is $5. Call 6235883 for more information.
DESERT SURVIVORS SALE. As far as our man Petey Mesquitey is concerned, this is the plant sale of the year and you should be on hand to give these desert delights a home.
This sale is loaded down with more than 300 species of native shrubs, groundcovers and succulents, many with the capacity to attract the neatest butterflies and desert animals around. Get thee to this sale and grab some penstemon, cassia, acacia, mesquites and more. You might have to show I.D. to Nursery Manager Mesquitey though--he thinks these plants are all his kids.
By the way, with your purchases you support the excellent work of the non-profit Desert Survivors, which employs and trains people with disabilities. The two-day sale runs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow at 1020 W. 22nd St. Call 791-9309 for more information.
BRIDGE ENSEMBLE. The Bridge Ensemble is fast becoming a favorite among chamber music lovers all over the country. They perform at today's 2:30 p.m. concert at the Southwest Center for Music as part of the Hillel Foundation's Conference on the Holocaust.
Today's concert, in honor of the victims of the Holocaust, will feature the work of four Jewish composers, Gustav Mahler, Felix Mendelssohn, Daniel Asia and Erwin Schulhoff.
Schulhoff was an acclaimed Czechoslovakian composer when he was imprisoned during the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia. He died in the Wulzburg Concentration Camp in 1942. His Czech folk-inspired Duo for Violin and Cello, will be performed today.
Also, composer Daniel Asia will be in attendance for the performance of his Piano Quartet.
The Southwest Center for Music is at 2175 N. Sixth Ave. General admission is $18, $5 for students. For more information call 624-6561.
TMA ARTISANS. When the Tucson Museum of Art puts on the TMA Artisans Market, you know you don't have to wade through a lot of mediocre work to get to the good stuff.
This year's market will feature more than 50 booths of fine sculpture and furniture, along with jewelry, ceramics, glass art and clothing. Market organizer John McNulty says to look for Ruth Clark's linens, made with cut-out cloth designs or molas, and functional molded glass bowls and platters by Karen Painter. "The Shrine Man," Ralph Wilson, formerly of Bisbee, will display his "wonderful, wacky" found object shrines. He'll also have his make-your-own shrine kits, perfect for your dashboard. McNulty will have his own well-known decorative raku bowls and dishes encrusted with cherubs for sale, too.
There's food, music and you get free admission into the museum where the excellent show Gronk: A Living Survey is hanging, featuring the thickly painted canvases and memorabilia of Los Angeles Chicano artist Gronk. TMA is located at 140 N. Main Ave. For more information call 624-2333.
FORGOTTEN LANGUAGE. How we respond to nature and our understanding of the natural world is one of those things we want writers to explain and enliven for us. Their words are often the encouragement to keep us seeking in the wilderness.
The Orion Society, publisher of Orion: The Magazine of People and Nature, sponsors a series of readings called "The Forgotten Language Tour," which brings together outstanding local and national nature writers and poets to contribute to our "natural understanding." This is the first year, according to poet and tour member Alison Hawthorne Deming, that the tour has come to Tucson.
Several superb local writers will take part in this two-day tour starting at 8 tonight in the UA's Modern Languages Auditorium. Reading tonight are Simon Ortiz, whose collected book of poetry was published by the UA Press; poet and essayist Deming, and Scott Russell Sanders, a fiction writer, essayist and author of 15 books, including The Paradise of Bombs.
Tomorrow at 8 p.m. hear Robert Michael Pyle, who Deming says is an entomologist and writer, confronting issues such as the logging in the Pacific Northwest as someone who is both "a passionate supporter of the land and interested in controlling the forces of greed," but who also understands what is at stake as far as the economy goes. Other readers tomorrow include Tucson's own Gary Paul Nabhan and poet and linguist Ofelia Zepeda.
All readings are free and open to the public. For more information call 3217760.
SO SICK AND TWISTED. Yeah, now here's a film festival you can really sink your sick mind into and regurgitate all the facts to your friends the next day--Spike & Mike's Sick and Twisted Festival of Animation. It's over at the Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway, through Thursday, April 13.
Mellow Manor Productions, the shame-faced producers of this show, are pleased to tell you that since so many people put the festival announcement on their fridge doors, if you bring in the appliance--with flyer in place--you get in free. They claim 13 people in California actually did that. Very cool. Cold almost.
Flicks this year range from Holland's Safe Sex--what we hear is the absolute best PSA of all times; visiting aliens in Webster Colcord's Abducted, and the much-anticipated Lloyd's Lunch Box sequel, Lloyd's Lunch Box Three Course Butt-Cheese Platter is here to try to make disgust a digestible commodity. The fun porno spoof Smush will change the way you view worms forever.
Admission to the sickest festival in town is $7. No discounts for warped kids, because absolutely no one under 18 will be admitted. Seriously gang, if you don't look a day over 40 bring your ID, you'll need it. Call 795-7777 for show times.
NEWPORT JAZZ FEST. This is a Wednesday jazz event to prop up your mid-week slump.
The Newport Jazz Festival has long been considered one of the premier jazz showcases in this country, and now they're on the road. New Orleans jazz, swing and bebop will be the sounds to celebrate the 40th anniversary of this legendary festival. All the musicians are highly accomplished, having played from the Tonight Show stage to Carnegie Hall and a zillion stages in between.
Tickets are $17 to $24 with $6 student rush tickets available.
Beginning at 6:15 p.m., local school jazz bands will perform out front and you're encouraged to picnic on the lawn before the show. Food and drinks will be available. For more information call 6213341.
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