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Pic Hits for the week

thursday
april 4
Phoenix Firebirds: The AAA affiliate of baseball's San Francisco Giants, led by new skipper and former Firebird infielder Ron Wotus, opens its 33rd Pacific Coast League season with a home stand against the Salt Lake Buzz. Games are scheduled at 7:05 p.m. Thursday, April 4; 7:05 p.m. Friday, April 5; 7:05 p.m. Saturday, April 6; and 1:05 p.m. Sunday, April 7, at Scottsdale Stadium, 7408 East Osborn. The team's next home series is slated for Saturday, April 13, through Tuesday, April 16, against the Edmonton Trappers. Tickets range from $3 to $7, available at the stadium and Dillard's; season and group packages are available. Call 275-0500 or 678-2222.

Steve Earle and the Dukes: For a short time in the '80s, Earle looked like he could be country-rock's new messiah, but then he started acting out some of the seedier aspects of the lifestyle he'd written about on his twin gems Guitar Town (1986) and Exit 0 (1987), culminating in a 1994 conviction for crack possession. Dried out and sobered up, he returned to the studio in '95 after a four-year hiatus to make the acoustic Train a Comin' for the indie Winter Harvest label. It earned him another shot at the majors, and he's touring in support of his E-Squared/Warner Bros. debut, I Feel Alright, hailed by some as a return to form; see the review on page 100. Earle and his Dukes are scheduled Thursday, April 4, at the Rockin' Horse, 7000 East Indian School in Scottsdale. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $15, available at the scene and Ticketmaster. Call 949-0992 or 784-4444.

The Tradition at Desert Mountain: Defending champ Jack Nicklaus joins Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Tom Weiskopf, Ray Floyd, Hale Irwin and about 100 other duffers at this major Senior PGA Tour event, a 72-hole tourney played on the Cochise Course at Desert Mountain, Pima and Cave Creek roads in Scottsdale. Preliminary rounds are scheduled Thursday, April 4; Friday, April 5; and Saturday, April 6, with the championship round on Sunday, April 7. Tickets are available at Dillard's; call 443-1597 or 678-2222.

The Child Diego: Arizona State University's theatre department continues its season with Carlos Morton's free-associative take on the life of Mexican artist Diego Rivera. The work takes liberties with time and place, but begins and ends with Rivera's late-period painting of the masterpiece "Sueno de una Tarde Dominical en el Alameda Central (Dream of a Sunday Afternoon in the Central Alameda Park)." Final performances are on Thursday, April 4; Friday, April 5; and Saturday, April 6. All shows start at 8 p.m. at Lyceum Theatre, located at the north end of Forest Mall on the west side of the ASU campus in Tempe. Tickets are $11, $8.50 for ASU faculty and staff, $6 for students, available at ASU Fine Arts and Dillard's box offices. Call 965-6447 or 678-2222.

Phoenix Suns: The Suns host the Utah Jazz at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4, and the Portland Trail Blazers at the same time Tuesday, April 9, at America West Arena, First Street and Jefferson. The team's final regular-season home games are at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 16, versus the Houston Rockets and at 7 p.m. Friday, April 19, against the Dallas Mavericks. If tickets are available, they're at the arena and Dillard's. Call 379-7867.

friday
april 5
Charlie Haden Quartet West: The great acoustic bassist and former Ornette Coleman sideman is noted for being a progressive conservative, simultaneously steaming ahead of the pack and looking over his shoulder. His fifth Quartet West album, the gorgeous Now Is the Hour (Verve), continues the revolutionary tradition; it's a follow-up, of sorts, to the group's previous album, the "jazz noir" work Always Say Goodbye, a paean to the Los Angeles of the '40s and '50s. Now Is the Hour journeys back in time to the New York City of the same era. The quartet performs at 8 p.m. Friday, April 5, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Tickets are $14 and $18, available at the center and Ticketmaster. A free lecture by jazz writer Patricia Myers precedes at 7 in the center's Cinema. For details call 994-2787 or 784-4444.

Ballet Arizona's Romeo & Juliet: The troupe closes its season with artistic director Michael Uthoff's reading of the romantic standard, set to music by Prokofiev. This week's performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 5; 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6; and 2 p.m. Sunday, April 7, in Center Stage at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe. More shows are scheduled Thursday, April 11, through Sunday, April 14. Tickets are $17.25, $22.25 and $27.25, available at the ballet box office and Herberger. Call 381-1096.

Sand Rubies: What's in a name? As idiotic as it sounds, these Tucson-based progenitors of "desert rock" have never really recovered from the loss of their original designation, the Sidewinders, in a legal dispute with the North Carolina pop band Sidewinder. The Rubies, still led by Rich Hopkins and David Slutes and reunited for a short tour in support of a new live album, perform at 10 p.m. Friday, April 5; and the same time Saturday, April 6, at Nita's Hideaway, 1816 East Rio Salado Parkway in Tempe. Tickets are $8 in advance, $10 the day of the show, available at the club and Alternatix. For details call 967-9531 or 244-8444.

 

Manhattan Rhythm Kings and Phoenix Symphony: The vaudeville-style Kings--Hal Shane, Brian Nalepka and Tripp Hanson--join conductor Clotilde Otranto and the orchestra for a program that includes a tribute to Leroy Anderson, a medley of works from Gershwin and Stein's Crazy for You and a batch of nostalgic tunes like "Smoke Ring," "The Jitterbug" and "Shanghai Lil." Performances are at 8 p.m. Friday, April 5; and the same time Saturday, April 6, at Symphony Hall, 225 East Adams. Tickets range from $12 to $36, available at the symphony box office and Dillard's. For details call 262-7272 or 678-2222.

The Child Diego: See Thursday.
Phoenix Firebirds: See Thursday.
The Tradition at Desert Mountain: See Thursday.

saturday
april 6
Fishbone: The funky forefather of the burgeoning hard-ska movement is also the closest contemporary equivalent to Sly's Family Stone. Your feet'll ache after the 'bone's gig on Saturday, April 6, at Gibson's, 410 South Mill in Tempe. Kongo Shock shares the bill. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $10.50 in advance, $12.50 the day of the show, available at the venue and Alternatix. For details call 968-8664 or 244-8444.

Changing Hands' Birthday Party: The Tempe store, a local literary institution and one of the Valley's few thriving indie booksellers, celebrates its 22nd year of life on Saturday, April 6. Highlights include an afternoon appearance by Gary "The Movie Doctor" Solomon, author of The Motion Picture Prescription: Watch This Movie and Call Me in the Morning; and evening entertainment by the Keith Johnson Sankofa World Beat Band. Admission is free. The store is located at 414 South Mill, Suite 109. Call 966-0203.

Mitzi Gaynor: The star of Hollywood's versions of South Pacific and Anything Goes (real, if somewhat disputed, name: Franceska Mitizi Marlene de Charney von Gerber) brings her dancing shoes, her Bob Mackie wardrobe and her big band to the Sundome, 19403 R.H. Johnson Boulevard in Sun City West, for a campy show at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 6. Of course, she doesn't consider it camp. . . . Tickets range from $7 to $24, available at the 'dome and Dillard's. For details call 975-1900 or 678-2222.

Ballet Arizona's Romeo & Juliet: See Friday.
The Child Diego: See Thursday.
Manhattan Rhythm Kings and Phoenix Symphony: See Friday.
Phoenix Firebirds: See Thursday.
Sand Rubies: See Friday.
The Tradition at Desert Mountain: See Thursday.

sunday
april 7
Mark Hummel and the Blues Survivors: Harmonica-blowing Hummel prays nightly at the shrine of Little Walter, the late, Chicago-based patron saint of the blues harp--and if he doesn't, he should. That said, check out the Survivors (especially guitarist Rusty Zinn) for their hot swing and jumpin' jive--old terms for what's now called "California boogie blues" up in Hummel's home base of Oakland. Touring behind the Flying Fish disc Married to the Blues, Hummel and band perform at 9 p.m. Sunday, April 7, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School. The cover is $5. For details call 265-4842.

Ballet Arizona's Romeo & Juliet: See Friday.
Phoenix Firebirds: See Thursday.
The Tradition at Desert Mountain: See Thursday.

monday
april 8
Dinofest International: Billed as "the biggest dinosaur event ever," this saurian showcase includes dinosaur skeletons and fossils from all seven continents. Highlights include numerous pieces from the "Great Dinosaurs of China" collections of the Beijing and Inner Mongolia museums of natural history, including the largest touring dino skeleton in existence: an 85-foot-long, 35-foot-tall Neurosaurus chaganensis specimen nicknamed "Nancy"; the remains of a 25-foot-long duckbill from the Los Angeles County Museum; and eight robotic replicas by Dinamation International Corporation. The exhibit opens Monday, April 8, and continues through Sunday, April 21, at Arizona State University Activity Center in Tempe. Public hours are 6 to 10 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekends. Admission is $5, $3 for kids age 12 and under, available at ASU Public Events and Dillard's box offices. For details call 965-3434 or 678-2222.

Francine Reed: The former Valley vocalist now lives in Atlanta, and she's scheduled to co-headline the Chicago Blues Festival in June. She tops the marquee at a fund raiser for Actors Theatre of Phoenix at 8 p.m. Monday, April 8, in Center Stage at Herberger Theater Center, 222 East Monroe. Dennis Rowland, J. David Sloan and Ray Herndon share the bill. Tickets are $20 and $25, available at Herberger and Dillard's; all proceeds benefit ATOP (call 252-8497 or 678-2222). Reed is also scheduled to perform at 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 10, at the Rhythm Room, 1019 East Indian School (call 265-4842).

 

tuesday
april 9
"Romantic Fantasies": Pianist/lecturer Jeffrey Siegel continues his 17th season of "Keyboard Conversations" with this program at 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 9, at Scottsdale Center for the Arts, 7380 East Second Street. Siegel performs and discusses J.S. Bach's Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue; Mozart's Fantasia in D minor, K. 397; Chopin's Polonaise Fantasia, Opus 61; and Schubert's Fantasia in C ("Wanderer"), Opus 15. Tickets are $20, available at the center and Ticketmaster. For details call 994-2787 or 784-4444.

ASU Baseball: Pat Murphy's Arizona State University baseball squad hosts Southern Utah State College at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 9; and the same time Wednesday, April 10, at Packard Stadium, First Street and Rural in Tempe. Tickets range from $2 to $5. Call 965-2381.

Darwin's Patagonia: San Francisco's Ken Armstrong followed in the footsteps of the evolutionary theorist in the filmmaker's exploration of the oddly beautiful region at the foot of South America. Armstrong introduces the work at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 9, at the Sundome, 19403 R.H. Johnson Boulevard in Sun City West, continuing the venue's Armchair Traveler Series. Tickets are $6, available at the scene and Dillard's. For details call 975-1900 or 678-2222.

Dinofest International: See Monday.
Phoenix Suns: See Thursday.

wednesday
april 10
Gilby Clarke: The former Kills for Thrills guitarist is best known for his short-lived stint with the doomed Guns N' Roses; he replaced Izzy Stradlin when the GNR co-founder and second guitarist left to form the JuJu Hounds. Clarke's now making his own scene, too, and his latest tour brings him to Electric Ballroom, 1216 East Apache in Tempe, for a show on Wednesday, April 10. Bruce Witkin, and Beat Angels share the all-ages bill. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $5, available at the club and Ticketmaster. For details call 894-0707 or 784-4444.

ASU Baseball: See Tuesday.
Dinofest International: See Monday.
Francine Reed: See Monday.


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