Pic Hits for the week

thursday
february 27
Cactus League Baseball: The boys of spring are back for this year's slate of preseason games, which opens with a couple of charity matches on Thursday, February 27: The Seattle Mariners take on the San Diego Padres in a benefit for the Peoria Diamond Club at 1:05 p.m. at the teams' dual training site, Peoria Sports Complex, 16101 North 83rd Avenue; and the newly rechristened Anaheim Angels host Brigham Young University in a fund raiser for the Boys & Girls Club of the East Valley at 6:05 p.m. at Tempe Diablo Stadium, 2200 West Alameda. Regular games begin Friday, February 28, and continue daily, through Friday, March 28, at these and other venues; for this week's schedule and other information, see the "Cactus League Baseball" subsection in the Sports listing.

Jackie Mason: The old-school comedian speaks loudly and wields a big shtick. The New York-based standup artist also owns an honorary degree from the Oxford University Union, an award bestowed upon only three previous recipients: John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter and Gandhi--worthy men all, though not a funny bone between 'em. Theater League presents performances of Mason's new one-man show, "Direct From Broadway," at 8 p.m. Thursday, February 27; 8 p.m. Friday, February 28; 8 p.m. Saturday, March 1; and 2 p.m. Sunday, March 2, at the Orpheum Theatre, 203 West Adams. Tickets are $35.50 and $38.50, available at Phoenix Civic Plaza and Dillard's box offices; call 503-5555 or 262-7272.

Vital Signs: The most ambitious, and perhaps the best, work by enigmatic playwright Jane Martin (Keely & Du, Talking With . . . ). Arizona State University's theater department and the school's Institute for Studies in the Arts collaborated on a multimedia production of the by turns farcical and devastating 60-character study of American womanhood. Final performances are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, February 27; 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 28; and 3 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 1, at Paul V. Galvin Playhouse at ASU's Nelson Fine Arts Center, 10th Street and Mill in Tempe. Tickets range from $6 to $12, available at ASU Fine Arts and Dillard's box offices; call 965-6447 or 503-5555.

Will Bruder: The architect, designer of Phoenix Central Library and the in-development Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art--which is scheduled to take over the building next to Scottsdale Center for the Arts that's currently home to a United Artists discount cinema--previews SMOCA and discusses "ideas and images related to art [and] architecture" at 8 a.m. Thursday, February 27, at SCA, 7380 East Second Street. The event's held in conjunction with Scottsdale's monthly Mayor/City Council Breakfast, which precedes at 7:30. Admission is free, and includes a gratis continental breakfast. Call 994-2335.

A Grand Night for Singing: This show is a windfall for Rodgers and Hammerstein fans, featuring numbers like "Some Enchanted Evening" and "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Out of My Hair" and lesser-known works like "Allegro" and "Pipe Dream." This week's performances are at 8 p.m. Thursday, February 27; 8 p.m. Friday, February 28; 8 p.m. Saturday, March 1; 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday, March 2; 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 4; and 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, at Phoenix Theatre, 100 East McDowell. The production continues through Sunday, March 9. Tickets are $20 and $22, available at the scene and Dillard's; call 254-2151 or 503-5555.

friday
february 28
Ashley MacIsaac and the Kitchen Devils: It had to happen sooner or later, "it" being the techno-groove desecration of traditional Scottish highland music. But MacIsaac--a young man from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, who wears a kilt and combat boots, plays a salty fiddle and is on a self-proclaimed mission to make the music of his forefathers safe for Gen X--defiles the form so well. The tunes on MacIsaac's major-label debut, hi how are you today?, range from trip-hops to simmering mantras to bum-kicking Scot-rock tunes like "The Devil in the Kitchen." MacIsaac and band perform a free set at 5 p.m. Friday, February 28, at Tempe's Zia Record Exchange, 105 West University (call 829-1967). Tara MacLean shares the stage at an evening concert slated for 7 at nearby Gibson's, 410 South Mill in Tempe; tickets are $6, available at the club and Ticketmaster (call 967-1234 or 784-4444).

Indian Fair and Market: Heard Museum Guild presents the 39th annual cultural festival, one of the West's best. It opens with a preview/reception from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Friday, February 28, at the Heard, 22 East Monte Vista; tickets are $15 (call 251-0214). The fest proper is held on the museum grounds from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 1; and the same hours Sunday, March 2. Highlights include Native American art, chicken-scratch music and hoop dancing. Tickets, available at the scene and Dillard's, are $6, $3 for kids ages 4 to 12, and include museum entry (call 252-8840 or 503-5555).  

Haunted Summer: Peter James Cirino and Christopher Haines co-wrote this fictional, though fact-based, work about the famed Gothic-horror summit held in the summer of 1816 by writers Mary Godwin Wollstonecraft Shelley, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Lord Byron and others; Haines portrays Byron. Opening performances are at 8 p.m. Friday, February 28; 8 p.m. Saturday, March 1; and 3 p.m. Sunday, March 2, at Planet Earth Multi-Cultural Theatre, 909 North Third Street. The production continues through Saturday, March 22. Tickets are $9, $7 for students and seniors; they're $2 less on Thursdays. Call 241-1828.

The Paladins: Dave Gonzalez's San Diego trio has been playing nonsense-free roots rock, thick with the smells of smoke, spirits and diesel fuel, since the dawn of the '80s. Touring behind its new live disc, Million Mile Club, the band performs Friday, February 28, at Nita's Hideaway, 1816 East Rio Salado Parkway in Tempe. Flathead shares the bill. Showtime is 10 p.m. The cover is $6. Call 967-9531.

Cactus League Baseball: See Thursday.
A Grand Night for Singing: See Thursday.
Jackie Mason: See Thursday.
Vital Signs: See Thursday.

saturday
march 1
Jeremy Enigk: Cultish Seattle act Sunny Day Real Estate ended on a stormy note in '95, but there've been bright spots in the band's breakdown. The Sunny Day rhythm section's now keeping the beat for Foo Fighters, and SDRE's former leader, the infamously born-again Enigk (pronounced "Ee-nick"), has concocted a new sound that's sort of a hybrid of Emo and orchestral strains; Enigk's bio describes it as "a cross of Nick Drake and John Lennon immaculately produced by George Martin." Touring in support of his solo debut, Return of the Frog Queen, Enigk performs Saturday, March 1, at Hollywood Alley, 2610 West Baseline in Mesa. Red Red Meat shares the stage. The all-ages show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $8, available at Tempe's Stinkweeds Record Exchange (968-9490) and Eastside Records (968-2011). For general information, call 820-7117.

Joshua Redman Quintet: Redman is one of contemporary jazz's shooting stars. The son of former Ornette Coleman sideman Dewey Redman plays a wizened sax that belies his still-tender years. Joshua brings his group back to the Valley on Saturday, March 1, for a gig at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Showtime is 8 p.m.; a free lecture by Patricia Myers precedes at 7 in the center's Cinema. Concert tickets are $20 and $25, available at the scene and Ticketmaster; call 994-2787 or 784-4444.

Cactus League Baseball: See Thursday.
A Grand Night for Singing: See Thursday.
Haunted Summer: See Friday.
Indian Fair and Market: See Friday.
Jackie Mason: See Thursday.
Vital Signs: See Thursday.

sunday
march 2
Christopher Reeve International Cup: Team USA battles Great Britain in this inaugural polo tourney, named after semiparalyzed actor Reeve and benefiting the Reeve-Irvine Research Center and the Active 20-30 Club of Phoenix's Children in Need Foundation. The match starts at 2:15 p.m. Sunday, March 2, at the North Scottsdale Polo Club at WestWorld, 16601 North Pima Road. Also on the agenda: a wine reception, a luncheon/fashion show and a performance by the U.S. Marine Corps Marching Band. Tickets range from $15 to $150, available at Dillard's; call 503-5555.

Cactus League Baseball: See Thursday.
A Grand Night for Singing: See Thursday.
Haunted Summer: See Friday.
Indian Fair and Market: See Friday.
Jackie Mason: See Thursday.

monday
march 3
Cibo Matto: Japanese riot grrrls Miho Hatori and Yuka Honda just want to have fun with their stupid-power-ballad pop, English-challenged hip-hop and generally absurdist world view. The vocalist and keyboardist/sample diva, respectively, compose this wild, wonderful, New York-based duo, whose name is pronounced "Chee-bo Motto." The Pulsars share the all-ages bill. Showtime is 8 p.m. Monday, March 3, at Gibson's, 410 South Mill in Tempe. Tickets are $6 in advance, $7 the day of the show, available at Ticketmaster. For details call 967-1234 or 784-4444.

Franklin Templeton Tennis Classic: Formerly known as the Arizona Men's Tennis Championships, this tourney features a field that includes defending champ Wayne Ferreira, Andre Agassi, MaliVai Washington, Marcelo Rios and Carlos Moya. Play in the ATP Tour stop opens Monday, March 3, and continues daily, through Sunday, March 9, at the Scottsdale Princess resort, 7575 East Princess Drive. Tickets are available at Dillard's. For details call 922-0222 or 503-5555.

Bella Abzug: The women's-rights activist and former U.S. congresswoman presents the keynote address, "Women in the New Millennium," at the sixth annual International Women's Day Celebration, scheduled for noon to 1:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, in the Grand Ballroom at Phoenix Civic Plaza, Second Street and Adams. Tickets are $25, $15 for students and seniors; proceeds benefit the Phoenix Women's Commission Scholarship Fund. Reservations are required; call 261-8242.

Cactus League Baseball: See Thursday.  

tuesday
march 4
Samaritan Wheelchair Suns: The National Wheelchair Basketball Association franchise takes on a team that includes chair-bound Phoenix Suns alums Alvan Adams, Connie Hawkins and Tom Van Arsdale in an exhibition match at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, in the gym at Marcos de Niza High School, 6000 South Lakeshore in Tempe. Also scheduled: performances by the Suns' Gorilla and dance squad and a silent auction. Admission is $4, $2 for kids under 10; all proceeds benefit the Centers for Habilitation. For details call 838-8111.

Cactus League Baseball: See Thursday.
Franklin Templeton Tennis Classic: See Monday.
A Grand Night for Singing: See Thursday.

wednesday
march 5
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater: The consistently fine dance troupe--perhaps America's finest--is now led by artistic director Judith Jamison, who broke in with AAADT as a dancer in 1965. Showtime is 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, at Gammage Auditorium, Mill and Apache in Tempe. Tickets range from $19 to $32, available at Gammage and Dillard's; call 965-3434 or 503-5555.

Barbara Stafford: The University of Chicago art-history instructor and author of Good Looking: Essays on the Virtue of Images presents the fifth annual Elaine Horwitch Lecture in Contemporary American Art Criticism, a free program titled "Brain and Womb: The New Medical Technology of Transparency," at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, at Katzin Concert Hall, located in the Music Building on the Arizona State University campus in Tempe; a reception follows at the ASU Art Museum at Nelson Fine Arts Center, 10th Street and Mill. For details call 965-3468.

Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin: The former astronaut speaks at 10 a.m. Wednesday, March 5, at Kerr Cultural Center, 6110 North Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale, continuing the Barry M. Goldwater Lecture Series. Tickets are $11, available at Kerr and Dillard's; call 965-5377 or 503-5555.

Deborah Coleman: The Virginia guitarist/vocalist initially was inspired by the Monkees. From there, she went on to play rock-head tunes in a series of cover bands, then gave up performance entirely for motherhood, which apparently gave her the blues--the good kind. Coleman's Blind Pig debut, I Can't Lose, showcases a solid, assured blueswoman with a swinging, stinging style reminiscent of the late Albert Collins. She performs at 9 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School. The cover is $5. Fordetails call 265-4842.

Cactus League Baseball: See Thursday.
Franklin Templeton Tennis Classic: See Monday.
A Grand Night for Singing: See Thursday.


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