"Crossing the Frontier" and "Canyonland Visions": The former exhibit, sponsored by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, is subtitled "Photographs of the Developing West, 1849 to the Present," though "Photographs of the Despoiling West" might be more accurate. The show comprises more than 200 shots, vintage and contemporary, detailing the taming/raping of the land, from clear-cutting to nuclear dumping; artists represented include William Henry Jackson, Timothy O'Sullivan, A.J. Russell, Robert Adams and Frank Gohlke. "Canyonland Visions," a palate-cleansing companion installation organized by Fort Worth, Texas' fine Amon Carter Museum, includes 117 paintings and photos of still-pristine places on the Colorado Plateau, and features 46 recently rediscovered and never-before-displayed watercolors by Prussia-born adventurer/naturalist Heinrich Balduin Msllhausen. The exhibitions continue through Sunday, September 28, in the Steele Gallery at Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 North Central; PAM director Jim Ballinger hosts gallery talks titled "'Canyonland Visions': The Watercolors of Balduin Msllhausen" at 12:15 and 7 p.m. Thursday, August 7. Viewing hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays (to 9 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays). Admission, to the Steele Gallery only, is $5, $4 for seniors, $2 for students and children age 6 and up, free for younger kids and members; entry is free to all from 5 to 9 p.m. Thursdays. For more information, call 257-1880 or 257-1222.
Pageant: In Mixed Company brought us Alan Ball's frothy Five Women Wearing the Same Dress; the froth quotient's also high in the troupe's production of this interactive musical by Albert Evans, Bill Russell and Frank Kelly, which might be subtitled Six Guys Wearing the Same Gown. The dudes in question don pumps and sashes in pursuit of the "Miss Glamouresse" title and accompanying tiara. This week's performances are at 8 p.m. Thursday, August 7; 8 p.m. Friday, August 8; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, August 9; and 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday, August 10, in Stage West at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe. The run continues through Sunday, August 17. Tickets are $19.50, $17.50 for students and seniors, available at Herberger and Dillard's; call 252-8497 or 503-5555.
"The Great Dinosaur Extinction": The installation focuses on various theories about why the great beasts perished, and features the remains of a number of rare ones--including the large predator Acrocanthosaurus; the only complete skeleton of a Pachycephalosaurus ever found; and, naturally, a T. rex or two. The exhibit, making its inaugural pit stop on a planned two-year national tour, continues through Sunday, September 7, at Mesa Southwest Museum, 53 North Macdonald. The museum's hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and noon to 6 p.m. Sundays. Admission is $4, $3.50 for students and seniors, $2 for kids ages 3 to 12, free for those younger. For details call 644-2230.
The Drifters: The group's original leader, Clyde McPhatter, died a quarter-century ago, but his band plays on, and many of its songs--"Under the Boardwalk," "Save the Last Dance for Me," "Up on the Roof," "This Magic Moment"--are for the ages. The doo-woppers perform 'neath the stars on Thursday, August 7, at el Pedregal Festival Marketplace at the Boulders, 34505 North Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale, continuing the facility's "Music by Moonlight" series. Showtime is 7 p.m. Admission is $10; space is limited. For details call 488-1072.
13 featuring Lester Butler: The youngblood blues band from the City of the Angels smokes like Tabasco. The lineup includes ex-Red Devils vocalist/harpist Butler, guitarist Alex Schultz (Rod Piazza and the Mighty Flyers), drummer James Intveld (the Blasters, Rosie Flores' band) and bassist Mark Goldberg (Screamin' Jay Hawkins' group). Shows are scheduled at 9 p.m. Friday, August 8; and the same time Saturday, August 9, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School. The cover is $5. For details call 265-4842.
The Twins: The Unlikely Theater Company continues its commendable commitment to the standards (via its "classic wing," the Mercury Theater) with Michael Fenlason's contemporary update of Roman playwright Plautus' comedy about a bad case of mistaken identity engendered by the at-birth separation, and eventual reunion, of the title brothers. This week's performances--at the troupe's new home: Mesa Arts Center, 155 North Center--are at 8 p.m. Friday, August 8; and the same time Saturday, August 9. The run continues through Saturday, August 16. Tickets are $12, $10 for students and seniors. For details call 952-1955.
Phoenix Firebirds: The Triple A baseball squad hosts the Edmonton Trappers at 7:05 p.m. Friday, August 8; 7:05 p.m. Saturday, August 9; 6:05 p.m. Sunday, August 10; and 7:05 p.m. Monday, August 11, at Scottsdale Stadium, 7408 East Osborn. Home games against the Colorado Springs Sky Sox start at 7:05 p.m. Tuesday, August 12; and the same time Wednesday, August 13. Tickets range from $4 to $8, available at the scene and Dillard's. Call 275-0500 or 503-5555.
"Crossing the Frontier" and "Canyonland Visions": See Thursday.
"The Great Dinosaur Extinction": See Thursday.
Pageant: See Thursday.
"Token City": The virtual subway station Big Apple-born digital artist Muriel Magenta assembled out of whole cybercloth for this installation is likely the closest the Valley will come to mass transit for a significant span of years. The multimedia creation features images back-projected onto three screens (two of them 10 feet by 14 feet, the third 10 feet by eight feet) and underscored by multiple soundtracks to create the illusion of a 3-D depot "with platforms, trains, billboards, bluetiled walls and passengers." John Spiak curated "Token City," which was developed at Arizona State University's Institute for Studies in the Arts with support from composer Michael Udow and animator Gene Cooper. It opens Saturday, August 9; and continues through Tuesday, September 30, at the ASU Art Museum at Nelson Fine Arts Center, 10th Street and Mill in Tempe. Viewing is free; hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, 1 to 5 p.m. Sundays. For details call 965-2787.