Jeffrey's Ghosts: J.B. Smith, a resident artist at ASU's Institute for Studies in the Arts, performs two works for percussion: The Apparitions of J.B.--a piece for "electronic percussion and digital ghosts"--by Daniel Lentz and Mandala in Funk by Wendy Mae Chambers. Smith hits the cyber-skins at 7:30 p.m. Friday, January 23, and the same time Saturday, January 24, at Drama City, located at the intersection of Myrtle and University on the Arizona State University campus in Tempe. Admission is free, but reservations are required. 965-9438.
Peter Nero: The Grammy-winning pop pianist takes the stage at 7 p.m. Friday, January 23, at the Scottsdale Conference Resort, 7700 East McCormick Parkway. The cocktail-attire evening, which includes a reception and dinner along with the show, is a tad pricey: Individual tickets are $175 and $500; it's a benefit for ASU's School of Music, to defray the costs of its recent acquisition of 31 Steinway grands and 39 studio-style uprights. 965-8562 (ASU), 991-9000 (SCR).
In the Deep Heart's Core: Joseph Daniel Sobol of the Celtic performance-art ensemble Kilartan Road composed this music-dance-theater piece, which employs the verse and prose of William Butler Yeats as its libretto. Constance McCord directs the show. Sobol sings, and is featured on guitar and cittern. It begins at 8 p.m. Saturday, January 24, at the Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Tickets are $18. 994-2787 (SCA), 784-4444 (Ticketmaster).
Chinese Week: Chinese New Year (the Year of the Tiger this time around) is celebrated in a weeklong festival, kicked off with a performance of traditional music and dance by the Phoenix Chinese Art Ensemble at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, January 24, at the Orpheum Theatre, 203 West Adams. Admission is $5. The official free opening ceremony happens at noon Monday, January 26, at the Phoenix City Hall Atrium, 2000 West Washington, and the fest continues through Sunday, February 1, with such events as a Culture and Cuisine Fair, a performance by the Chengdu Musical and Acrobatic Troupe, art exhibits, a screening of Jackie Chan's First Strike, a 5K "Wok," Run and Skate--in short, it's an excuse to party, listen to music, eat Chinese food and watch Jackie Chan. Anybody got a problem with that? 534-2664.
America: Since the '70s-era duo is coming to play in the desert, presumably they'll be able to remember their names. For out here, of course, there ain't no one for to give them no pain. Touring behind their 18th album, Hourglass, they visit the Valley at 8 p.m. Saturday, January 24, at the Sundome, 19403 R.H. Johnson Boulevard in Sun City West. Tickets are $12, $18 and $24. 975-1900 (the 'dome), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
Karen Dale Wolman: Newly Valley-based lesbian author and ASU writing instructor presents a reading from her most recent work, Rites of First Blood, and a selection of her voluminous short stories. Wolman starts at 2 p.m. Sunday, January 25, at Obelisk: The Bookstore, 24 West Camelback. Admission is free, and Wolman will autograph copies of her book after she's read from it. 266-2665.
"Cornered": ASU Main School of Art Professor Dennis Gillingwater's multimedia installation piece, which, in the artist's words, "deals with the configuration of landscape and the effects it has on humankind," is on display starting Monday, January 26, at Arizona State University West Art Gallery, located on the second floor of the University Center Building on the ASU West campus, 4701 West Thunderbird in Glendale. 543-2787.
Walt Disney's World on Ice: Toy Disney's latest ice extravaganza puts the characters from its surprisingly agreeable 1995 computer-animated movie up on blades: Woody the cowboy, space cadet Buzz Light-year and the rest of the surreptitiously animate playthings from Andy's room skate their hearts out at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, January 27, and the same time Wednesday, January 28, at America West Arena, 201 East Jefferson. The sight of the three-eyed aliens, the green toy soldiers or the mutant toys filling the ice could well produce a unique theatrical lyricism. 379-7800 (AWA), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
Happy Birthday, Dear Wolfgang: Mozart's birthday is celebrated with a free morning recital of the composer's works, performed by musicians and singers from ASU's School of Music. It's part of the "Starbucks Coffee Concert" series--admission is free, as are Starbucks refreshments, served starting at 10 a.m. Tuesday, January 27, at Kerr Cultural Center, 6110 North Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale. The concert follows at 10:30. Reservations are requested. 965-5377.
Slash: The former Guns N' Roses guitarist and his new band bring "Slash's Blues Ball," a two-hour set of blues-rock covers like Jimi Hendrix's "Stone Free," the James Gang's "Funk #49" and Cream's "Crossroads," back to the Cajun House, the very venue at which they were shut down by the cops after just a few numbers when they played there last April. The show is scheduled for Wednesday, January 28, at 7117 East Third Avenue in Scottsdale. Tickets are available at Ticketmaster. 945-5150, 784-4444.