Rhetorical civil rights issues for $200, please, Alex. The answer is: "The greatest amount possible without infringing upon the rights of another person." The question, of course, is "How much freedom is enough?," which is also the topic of discussion for the September edition of the monthly human-rights discussion group Between the Lines at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, September 3, at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park. Admission is free. 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200. 957-6660.
Heard any good filking lately? If the question sounds impertinent to you, then further explanation is in order: "Filking" is the practice of singing folk songs on science-fiction and fantasy themes--sometimes original tunes, sometimes familiar tunes with the lyrics reworked into a sci-fi fantasy ballad. It's a thriving underground musical genre; filkers record, tour, have groupies. If your response to the initial question was, "No, and, by golly, it's been too long," then--once you've enrolled in a class to remove expressions like "by golly" from your speech--you should check out CopperCon 18. A performance, sponsored by the Phoenix Filk Circle, by Seattle-based filk star Jeff Hitchens will be among the highlights of this annual event, held this weekend at the Embassy Suites North, 2577 West Greenway Road. Also on the schedule are appearances by author Stephen R. Donaldson, artist Mitchell Davison Bentley, special-effects man Mojo, and Mesa-based filker Larry Warner. The Con, the yearly blowout of the Central Arizona Speculative Fiction Society (CASFS), is planned from Friday, September 4, through Monday, September 7. It is, according to the press materials, "a science fiction and fantasy convention that has a strong emphasis on science fiction and fantasy literature as well as science fiction and fantasy art, television, movies and gaming." Are they trying to tell us that they dig science fiction and fantasy? Admission is $35 at the door; for more information, call 752-8526.
Stagebrush Theatre kicks off its six-show season with Grand Hotel, the musical adaptation of the 1932 Greta Garbo-John Barrymore-Joan Crawford movie, adapted in turn from a novel by Vicki Baum about the romances that flow around an upscale Berlin hotel. Alex Gonzales, Natalie Ellis and Kathi Osborne lead the cast, directed by Robyn Ferracane. Opening performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday, September 4; 8 p.m. Saturday, September 5; 2 p.m. Sunday, September 6; and 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 9. Tickets are $16, $15 for seniors and students; all seats are reserved. The run continues through Saturday, September 26. 990-7405.
Sisters Libby and Carrie Johnson, a.k.a. 22 Brides, bring their vigorous, Indigo Girl-ish harmonies to a concert and CD signing for their newest album, Demolition Day, at 8 p.m. Friday, September 4, at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park, 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200. Admission is free. 957-6660.
How the media have helped to Americanize Mexican communities in this part of the country is the topic of a lecture by Dr. Vicki Ruiz, author of Cultural Crossroads, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, September 5, in the fourth-floor lecture room at the Burton Barr Central Library, 1221 North Central. Admission is free; Dr. Ruiz will also sign her work--books will be available for purchase. 262-4636.
Internationally known novelist--and New Times columnist--Barry Graham will open the show, performing both new and previously published work, at the "Songwriter's Circus," a music and spoken-word festival that kicks off at 6 p.m. Sunday, September 6, at Balboa Cafe, 404 South Mill in Tempe. Graham, author of The Book of Man and Before, breaks with the tradition of the "reading," preferring instead to memorize entire passages of his own work, and deliver them as dramatic monologues. Other featured performers for the evening include Martin Shears--of the Britpop cover band The Scones--Linda Cushma, Tim Thomas and Christophe Leininger. There's no cover. 966-1300.
The wondrous Sister Carol and Boom Shaka headline an evening of Reggae and Rockers on the Hopi reservation. Casper and One Blood, and Albuquerque's Mystic Vision share the bill. Showtime is 4 p.m. Sunday, September 6, at Hopi Civic Center in Kykotsmovi. Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 the day of the show; kids under 12 get in for $5 in advance, $10 at the door. 1-520-734-6686, or 1-602-671-8216.
New York white-boy-rap trio Beastie Boys take the stage on Monday, September 7, at America West Arena, 201 East Jefferson. DJ Mixmaster Mike shares the bill; see the feature on page 89. Tickets are $25. 379-7800 (AWA), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
A celebration for Dr. Carl Hammerschlag's new Turtle Island Press children's book The Go-Away Doll, including a book signing, books available at discount prices, original artwork on display and for sale, kids' activities, refreshments, and a performance by clown Patch Adams, is scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, September 8, at the Heard Museum, 22 East Monte Vista. Admission is free. 468-1141.