Wolfgang Plays Wolfgang: Phoenix Symphony's principal bassoonist Bonnie Wolfgang, a 22-year veteran of the orchestra, gets a much-deserved moment in the spotlight. She plays Wolfgang Mozart's Concerto for Bassoon--the composer's only extant concerto for solo bassoon, and his first concerto for a wind instrument--in this concert, which also features Aaron Copland's Three Latin Sketches and Dvorak's Czech Suite. This is a road gig for PS, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, February 19, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Tickets, available at the Symphony box office, the Center box office, or Ticketmaster, are $16 and $20. 495-1999, 994-2787, 784-4444.
Cosi fan Tutte: More Mozart--like it was possible to get enough. Arizona Opera presents Wolfie's sex comedy, a rousing tale of Ferrando and Guglielmo, who disguise themselves as Albanians to see if they can seduce their fiancees, the sisters Fiordiligi and Dorabella (the title means, roughly, "all [women] do this"). Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, February 19; 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 20; 7:30 p.m. Saturday, February 21; and 2 p.m. Sunday, February 22, at Symphony Hall, 225 East Adams. Tickets range from $14 to $56. 262-7272 (Phoenix Civic Plaza), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
"Get Real" at Galeria Mesa: Reality--what a concept--is the focus of this juried exhibition at the gallery, which features 31 works of realist art ranging from a life-size baseball glove made of clay by California artist Richard Newman, a photo collage of natural rock-arch formations by Prescott Lewis and a charcoal drawing by Iowan Mary Welsh Boyts. The show runs through Saturday, March 14, at Mesa Arts Center, 155 North Center. A reception is planned from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, February 20, with entertainment by flutist Sandra Champion and refreshments. Regular hours: noon to 8 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. 644-2056.
ATSCO Nationals: SUNDAY! SUNDAY! SUNDAY! Actually, National Hot Rod Association's 14th annual blowout kicks off three days earlier, with qualifying and time trials from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, February 19; 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 20; and 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday, February 21, at Firebird International Raceway, 20000 South Maricopa Road in Chandler. On Sunday, February 22, gates open at 7 a.m. for the professional eliminations, which get under way at 11 a.m. after pre-race ceremonies at 10. Tickets, available at Firebird or at Dillard's, range from $10 to $46. 268-0200, 503-5555.
The Colored Museum: George C. Wolfe's satirical play about the stereotyping of blacks is performed by Interdisciplinary Arts and Performance department of Arizona State University West. Brian Barnham, Anita Johnson, Erahn Patton, Karen Kirkland and Mike Traylor are in the cast. This week's performances are at 8 p.m. Friday, February 20; 8 p.m. Saturday, February 21; and 3 p.m. Sunday, February 22, in Second Stage West in the University Center Building on the ASU West campus. The run continues through Saturday, February 28. Tickets are $8, $5 for seniors and $3 for students. 4701 West Thunderbird in Glendale. 543-6064.
Arizona Scottish Highland Games and Gathering: Caledonian Society of Arizona presents this 32nd annual event, which begins with a Celtic concert from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, February 20. The gathering proper begins at 8 a.m. Saturday, February 21, and continues 'til 5 p.m.; the same hours apply for Sunday, February 22. Massed bands play at noon and 4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Other stirring highlights include competitions, kids' activities, clan representatives, historical reenactments, music, country dancing, a Celtic rock concert featuring the Australian band Brother and the Native American band Clan/destine and more. All events take place at Riggs Stadium on the Mesa Community College campus, at the intersection of Dobson and Southern. Concert tickets are available for the Scot-friendly price of $5, $2 for children ages 5 to 11. One-day admission to the gathering is $9, $8 for seniors, $2 for kids ages 5 to 11, free for those younger. Two-day tickets are also available. 431-0095.
Spike & Mike's Sick and Twisted Festival of Animation: The 1998 edition of this cult-fave fest, conceived by Californians Spike Decker and Mike Gribble, features Matt Stone and Trey Parker's early South Park short Spirit of Christmas, Guido Manuli's Jurassic Fart, a film called Loogie Tennis, new No-Neck Joe adventures by Craig McCracken and other revolting, sophomoric, socially irredeemable and frequently quite entertaining works by Adam Lane, Greg Ecklund, Neil Ishimine and others. The adults-only fun begins on Friday, February 20, with shows at 7 and 9:30 p.m. and midnight; shows at 7 and 9:30 p.m. continue daily. Valley Art Theatre, 509 South Mill in Tempe. Tickets are available at Ticketmaster. 829-6668, 784-4444.
Moon Over Buffalo: This circa-1953 backstage farce by Ken Ludwig (Lend Me a Tenor, Crazy for You) recounts the exploits of a squabbling husband-and-wife theatrical team who must try to put aside their differences long enough to get through a performance attended by Frank Capra--he's looking for the leads for his next picture. Local favorite Robyn Ferracane essays the role played on Broadway by Carol Burnett. John Sankovich, Jan Clevenger and Phillippe Hall are also in the cast of this Phoenix Theatre production, directed by Gary Griffin. Opening performances are at 8 p.m. Friday, February 20; 8 p.m. Saturday, February 21; 2 p.m. Sunday, February 22; 8 p.m. Tuesday, February 24; and 8 p.m. Wednesday, February 25, at 100 East McDowell. The run continues through Sunday, March 8. Tickets are $22 and $25. 254-2151 (PT), 503-5555.
Blues Blast '98: Phoenix Blues Society's Blast, now in its seventh year, kicks off with an indoor dance party from 8 p.m. to midnight Saturday, February 21, at Mesa Centennial Hall, 201 North Center. Big Jay McNeely headlines the dance, backed by Valley ensembles the Rocket 88s, and Phonoroyale. The festival proper swings from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, February 22, at Mesa Amphitheatre, Center and University. Roots-zydeco masters Terrance Simien and the Mallet Playboys headline this show; also on the bill are the Dallas-based Smokin' Joe Kubek Band featuring B'nois King; Mississippi Delta guitarist Big Jack Johnson, backed by the Oilers; Johnny Rawls; Tucson's Bad News Blues Band; and the Valley's own Sweet Jeffrey and Friends. Admission to the Saturday dance is $5 at the door; tickets to the Sunday show are $12 in advance, $15 at the door. Kids under 12 are admitted free to Sunday's show. 252-0599 (Blues Society), 644-2560 (Mesa Amphitheatre), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
Matsuri Festival of Japan: If exciting Olympic coverage from the Land of the Rising Sun has whetted your appetite for things Nipponese, get ready for decorative and performing arts and crafts, music, food, beverages and "the second largest koi competition in the country" in this annual event, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, February 21; and the same hours Sunday, February 22, at Heritage Square, Seventh Street and Monroe. Admission is free. It begs the question, however: Where is the largest koi competition in the country held? 262-5071.
SamulNori: For more Far East dazzle, this internationally renowned Korean quartet performs its homeland's traditional percussion music and dance, from the ceremonial to the acrobatic. Led by founder Kim Duk Soo, master of the hourglass-shaped drum called the changgo, the group carried the torch for Korea in the 1988 Olympics. It takes the stage at 8 p.m. Saturday, February 21, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Tickets are $20 and $24. 994-2787 (SCA), 784-4444 (Ticketmaster).
Marcel Marceau: Before mime-bashing became a standup-comedy cliche, Marceau proved what a rich art form it can be. Best known for Bip, his white-faced clown persona, Marceau and his company have performed complete dramas in mime, like his 1951 adaptation of Gogol's The Overcoat. Almost as exaltedly, he also starred--in a dual role!--in the bizarre William Castle fantasy-horror film Shanks, and spoke the one audible word in Mel Brooks' Silent Movie--"No!"--when asked if he wanted to appear in a silent movie. He performs his classic solo routines, such as "The Cage," "Walking Against the Wind," "In the Park" and "The Mask Maker," at 2 p.m. Sunday, February 22, at the Sundome, 19403 R.H. Johnson Boulevard in Sun City West. 975-1900 (the 'dome), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
Roy Clark: Like Marceau, country guitarist Clark's pop-culture hokiness--a semiregular role on The Beverly Hillbillies, co-host of Hee Haw--may obscure his musical virtuosity. But this child prodigy from Meherrin, Virginia, can pick like few others, and his vocals, on singles like his cover of "Yesterday When I Was Young" or his country-chart No. 1 hit "Come and Live With Me," have their own brand of soul as well. He plays two shows, at 3 and 7:30 p.m. Sunday, February 22, at the Red River Music Hall, Mill and Washington in Tempe. Tickets are $20 and $25. 829-6779 (Red River), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
Queen City Jazz Band: The Colorado-based ensemble, now 40 years old, plays Dixieland of the '30s and '40s. Up front is vocalist (and sometime TV actress) Wende Harston, winner of a 1989 Drama Critics Circle Award for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom. The band performs at 7 p.m. Sunday, February 22, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Tickets are $18 and $22. 994-2787 (SCA), 784-4444 (Ticketmaster).
James Burke: The art-and-science historian, host of the TV series Connections, Connections 2 and The Day the Universe Changed, lectures on a favorite subject--the interaction between art, technology and society in general--at 7:30 p.m. Monday, February 23, at Gammage Auditorium, Mill and Apache in Tempe. Burke takes on such questions as what purpose the arts have in our changing world. Admission is free, but assigned-seat tickets can be had from Gammage. 965-3434.
State Fair: John Davidson stars in this road-show version of the one Rodgers and Hammerstein musical written specifically for the screen--it features material from both the original, a 1945 musicalization of a 1933 Will Rogers comedy, and from the 1962 remake, for which, after Hammerstein's death, Rodgers added several songs of his own. Intriguingly for show-tune buffs, this staging also includes two songs originally written for (and cut from) Oklahoma!. Opening performances are at 8 p.m. Tuesday, February 24; and the same time Wednesday, February 25, at the Orpheum Theatre, 203 West Adams. Tickets range from $26.50 to $32.50. 262-7272 (Phoenix Civic Plaza), 503-5555 (Dillard's).
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Storm & Stress: The trio is a purveyor of a bizarre, contradictory kind of music: rhythmless rock 'n' roll. It's difficult, but intriguing--for a while, anyway. At least the band members can't be accused of selling out. Touring in support of their self-titled Touch and Go CD, they perform at 10 p.m. Tuesday, February 24, at Stinkweeds Record Exchange, 1250 East Apache, Suite 109, in Tempe. The cover is $4. 968-9490.
Magic Show: Illusionist Pete Petrashek bills himself as "Peter the Near (Great)" on the grounds that "it's different than if I was billed as 'Peter the (Near) Great.'" The (Great), who proudly notes having been named the Society of American Magicians' National Magician of the Year for 1989, and has performed from Russia to New Zealand, entertains from 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, February 24, at the Dobson Ranch Branch Library, 2425 South Dobson in Mesa. Admission is free, but tickets, available at the reference desk, are required. 644-3441.
Insane Clown Posse: ICP's press material is full of stuff about "the power of the Dark Carnival . . . subtle as a calm mist yet as glorious as a fiery comet." It sounds like the chatter of the rec-room teens on Saturday Night Live's "Goth Talk" sketches. This white-boy horror-rap from a couple of would-be homies--Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope--who (try to) look like half of KISS is interesting/controversial only because the act was once booted off a subsidiary label of the Disney Corp. (Hollywood Records) for--oooh!--cussing on its album. The Posse performs Wednesday, February 25, at Club Rio, 430 North Scottsdale Road in Tempe. 894-0533.