Tonight at 7, Colorado College and fictionist Bernard Cooper ask you, "Is there a Gay Aesthetic of the Arts?" Indeed. Cooper, recipient of many literary awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and the O. Henry Prize, will be at the Armstrong Theatre, northeast corner of Cascade and Cache La Poudre, tonight, to discuss the topic. Later on, CC Professor Brian Freeman will perform excerpts from his book Civil Sex, based on the real story of Bayard Rustin, a gay African-American civil rights activist and organizer of 1963's March on Washington. Finally, Tim Miller will present his latest work, Glory Box. Tickets, $5 or $2 with CC ID, are available at the Worner Center desk at 902 N. Cascade.
Chicago! It's a hit movie! You've probably been dragged to it already. But I bet you didn't know that it's based on a famous play, did you? Oh, you did. You say it's the longest-running revival in Broadway history? Dang. Well, suppose you'd better head down to the Fine Arts Center, 30 W. Dale St., to catch the opening tonight, before it heads back to Chicago, from whence it came. What? You say Broadway isn't even in Chicago? Dang. The show runs from tonight to Feb. 23; call 634-5583 for tickets, which range from $20 to $25.
From 6 to 9 p.m., enjoy the Colorado Art Education Association's awards show and opening at the Tri-Lakes Center for the Arts, located at 304 Highway 105 in Palmer Lake. The event features works in a variety of media from Front Range art instructors, among them Ann Bunn, Monica Escalante, Chip Shaw and Marlea Taylor. Fifty-five artists in all will be represented, with a total of 90 pieces. Awards will be presented at 7 p.m. The show will run until March 8; the Tri-Lakes Center's normal hours are 7 a.m.-4 p.m.
Tonight and tomorrow night, head to the Worner Center (still 902 N. Cascade) on the CC campus, as Black History Celebration 2003: Black Experience 101 continues. Today, starting at 3 p.m. and going till 7, enjoy "African Marketplace," and be sure to bring the kids, as Opalanga Pugh will be telling stories from 3 to 4 p.m. At 7:30, head over to Packard Hall (southwest corner of Cascade and Cache La Poudre) and again check out Opalanga in action, with African drummers and dancers, as they present a Night in Africa Celebration. Also, tomorrow in the WES room at Worner, don't miss the 7:30 p.m. presentation of Spike Lee's 1989 classic Do the Right Thing and the discussion that follows. All of these events are free.
If John Dicker's recent UFOlogy article gave you serious X-Files nostalgia, you'd better warp on over to the First Congregational Church, 20 East St. Vrain, today, for the UFO Signs and Circles Conference. Bill Winkler, Ron Russell, and Dr. Simeon Hein will be there to keep you informed on the things you, the reader, care about: UFOs, Crop Circles, and Resonant Viewing. The event starts at 10 a.m. and goes till 6 p.m., and will be $25, as it's a benefit for UFO Connections of Pueblo. Call 389-0726 or 686-1622 for details.
The Colorado Vocal Arts Ensemble is at it again. These local vagabonds have made it out of the school circuit, and now present the first public performance of The Mysterious Musical Machine, today at 3 p.m., at the First Christian Church, 16 E. Platte. The show guides the audience through the history of choral music, from Gregorian chant to the present day. Suffice to say that, yes, a time machine is involved, and, yes, conductor Deborah Teske will be a-conductin'. Call 520-SHOW for tickets ($10 for adults, $5 for students), or 577-4192 for details.
Tonight, the Old Colorado City Historical Society, located in Old Colorado City at 1 South 24th St., hosts a premiere screening of the new HBO special Unchained Memories: Readings from the Slave Narratives. The special, narrated by Whoopi Goldberg and featuring readings from, among others, Samuel L. Jackson, is based on interviews conducted in the 1930s with some of the last surviving former American slaves. The first screening is tonight at 7, and the second is tomorrow at 2 p.m. The screenings are free to the public, but do go ahead and RSVP at 636-1225. Donations to the museum are, of course, appreciated. Call 473-8684 for details.
From 7 to 10 p.m. Phantom Canyon Brewing Company, 2 E. Pikes Peak, will host a new exhibition of photographs by Barry Huebert in the third floor banquet hall. Call 635-2800 for more.
Colorado alt-blues chanteuse Nina Storey is getting her holler on down at 32 Bleu (32 S. Tejon St.) tonight at 9. She's been at it for years and has sung the National Anthem at a freakin' Super Bowl. Lordy! Her music's kind of an Alanis Morissette-meets-a-blues-rock-band-that's-being-attacked-by-Shania Twain-kind-of-thing. She's got pipes. And a pretty darn sexy photo. Yeah. The show's 18+, and the going rate is 12 bucks.
-- Brian Arnot