Assuming it hasn't been shipped off to Kosovo, the 108th Army Band of the Arizona National Guard plays a patriotic program titled "Strike Up the Tunes," kicking off the free "Concert Under the Stars" series at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 6, at Mesa Amphitheatre, Center and University. The series continues weekly, with a wide variety of acts ranging from the Arizona Mormon Choir to Igor's Jazz Cowboys, through Thursday, June 24. 480-644-2560 (Mesa Community Center).
Alfred Driving Miss Daisy Uhry's comedy-drama about the Jewish community in Atlanta in 1939, The Last Night of Ballyhoo, closes the season for the state's official professional theatrical entity, Arizona Theatre Company, in Center Stage at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe. ATC's production of this Tony Award winner was directed by Ken Ruta. Performances begin with previews at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 6; and 8 p.m. Friday, May 7, with tickets specially priced from $23 to $28. Official opening is at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 8. Performances continue at 1 and 7 p.m. Sunday, May 9, with an informal discussion planned after the matinee; and at 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 12. Regular tickets range from $18 to $28, with discounts available for senior adults, students, military personnel and those in groups of 10 or more; they're available at Herberger and Dillard's box offices. The evening performance on Sunday, May 9, is a "pay what you can" performance; the KYOT Mother's Day celebration is held at that performance as well. The run continues through Sunday, May 23. For details and reservations, call 602-252-TIXS (8497) or 602-678-2222.
In Mixed Company presents Lisa Loomer's comedy The Waiting Room, about "the timeless quest for beauty--and its cost." Opening performances are at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 6; and the same time Friday, May 7; and Saturday, May 8, at PlayWright's Theatre, 1121 North First Street. Tickets are $16.50, $14.50 for students and seniors, available through the Herberger box office and Dillard's. The run continues through Saturday, May 22. 602-252-8497, 480-503-5555.
The monthly human-rights discussion group Between the Lines examines U.S. involvement in Guatemalan military oppression at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 6, at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park, 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200. Arizona State University professor David William Foster facilitates. Admission is free. 602-957-6660.
New York-based performance artist Jeffrey Schultz, a.k.a. The Hyperperformer, brings his new piece "Hyperperformances 4.1: Infiniti Trance Actions"--which touches on "ideas of digital identity, finance, information and TranceAction"--to the Valley this weekend. He hyperperforms at 8 p.m. Friday, May 7; and the same time Saturday, May 8, at Barlow & Straker, 1319 East McDowell. Tickets, which must be purchased in advance at the gallery, are $8, $5 for students. Seating is limited. Call 602-271-4570 for more information.
Valley modern dance company The Movement Source, Inc. performs an evening of works by choreographers from Belgium, New York and L.A., ranging from flamenco to dancing accompanied by Japanese drums or Miles Davis jazz. Performances are at 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, May 8, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. 480-994-2787 (SCA), 480-784-4444 (Ticketmaster).
The Copperstate Dinner Theatre continues its run of Broadway Jukebox, an interactive musical revue in which the audience selects the evening's numbers from a list of more than 100 tunes. In addition to usual weekend performances--at 8 p.m. Friday, May 7; and the same time Saturday, May 8; with dinner preceding each show at 6:30 p.m.--there's a special "Mother's Day Matinee" starting with dinner at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 9, followed by the show at 5 p.m., at Max's Dinner Theatre, 6727 North 47th Avenue in Glendale. For this show only, a medley of "Mother" songs from the Great White Way, including "If Mama Was Married," "I Remember Mama" and "Mama, A Rainbow," will be added to the "Jukebox." Tickets are $24.95. Reservations are required. The run continues in its usual Friday-Saturday schedule through Saturday, June 19. 623-937-1671. For more Mother's Day possibilities, see the column on the right.
The 1999 edition of the American Red Cross Golf Classic is slated for Monday, May 10, at Ocotillo Golf Club, 3751 South Clubhouse Drive in Chandler. Check-in and registration are at 10 a.m.; lunch is at 11 a.m.; a shotgun start follows at noon. All proceeds benefit the Valley chapter of the Red Cross. Registration, which continues through Saturday, May 8, costs $175 per person and includes cart, greens fees, lunch, prizes and evening festivities, which feature silent and live auctions; the evening festivities alone cost $25. 480-786-4872.
Your humble correspondent is woefully aware of the difficulties that come with playing the clarinet--I "played" it in high school band, and I'm pretty sure I was made a drum major in my junior year to spare my instrument further abuse. More successful was the guest at this month's Phoenix Symphony Close-Up. Steve Hanusofski, assistant principal and bass clarinetist with the Phoenix Symphony, discusses and performs at 7 p.m. Monday, May 10, at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park, 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200, as part of the ongoing series. Admission is free. 602-957-6660.
On the following evening, the above venue will host writer Mel Weiser. The Valley-based author will discuss and sign his memoir Nick Nolte: Caught in the Act at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 11, at Borders Books & Music at Biltmore Fashion Park, 24th Street and Camelback, Suite 200. Admission is free. 602-957-6660.
Made up of both students and volunteer musicians from the surrounding community, the Phoenix College Community Orchestra will play a free spring concert at 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 11, in Bulpitt Auditorium at Phoenix College, 1202 West Thomas. The program includes "Hungarian Dance #5" by Brahms; Haydn's Symphony #99; Mozart's Horn Concerto; and Dvorak's Romance for Violin and Orchestra. Best of all, free ice cream is served afterward. Call 602-285-7272 for more information.
Maricopa Elder Abuse Prevention Alliance presents a free seminar titled "Preparing for Long Term Care" from 1 to 3 p.m. Wednesday, May 12, at Church of the Beatitudes, 555 West Glendale Avenue in Phoenix. Experts in various relevant fields will examine such issues as financial, medical and psychosocial considerations in assuring quality care. To register for the event, call Center D.O.A.R. (Developing Older Adult Resources) at 602-274-5022.
Lisa Lowry's The Giver is the subject of the Mother-Daughter Book Discussion Group, which is geared toward kids ranging from fourth through eighth grades. It's scheduled from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 12, in the North Central Regional Library, 17811 North 32nd Street. Admission is free, and no registration is required. 602-506-1634.