Seven Days to Live 

click to enlarge Secrets and Lies

27 Wednesday


The Families Film Series at Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center (30 W. Dale St., csfineartscenter.org) continues at 7 tonight with its third of four installments, a screening of 1996's England-based, Oscar-nominated Secrets & Lies. Tickets are $7 ($5 for members) to view the film and enjoy a discussion hosted by Robert von Dassanowsky, director of the film studies program at University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Fitting into the broader Families theme, Secrets & Lies examines the story of an adopted black woman (Marianne Jean-Baptiste) seeking out her white birth mother (Brenda Blethyn). — Matthew Schniper

click to enlarge Air Dubai

28 Thursday


They aren't an airline, but they'll take you on a ride! Sorry, I had to say that. But to continue with the music-promoter impersonation, Air Dubai is a Denver-based band that combines live instruments with hip-hop and R&B vocals to produce a Parliament Funkadelic-like sound for the new millennium. Having performed in places such as Red Rocks and the Bluebird Theater, Air Dubai is in the midst of a national tour and at 8 tonight will stop at the Black Sheep (2106 E. Platte Ave., blacksheeprocks.com) for an all-ages, $10-to-$12 show, preceded by bands Drop Switch and Grits & Gravy. — Miguel Bustamante

click to enlarge The Life Abstract, Cottonwood Center for the Arts

29 Friday


"What goes on in abstract art is the proclaiming of aesthetic principles," said 20th-century artist Hans Hofmann. "It is in our own time that we have become aware of pure aesthetic considerations. Art never can be imitation." Think about that — art not for documentation or symbolism, but for the pursuit of formal exploration (meaning compositional elements like color, line and shape). That's the impetus behind The Life Abstract, opening from 5 to 8 tonight at Cottonwood Center for the Arts (427 E. Colorado Ave., cottonwoodcenterforthearts.com) and staying up through May 17. Don't expect facts or straight images, but something evasive and mutable.— Edie Adelstein

click to enlarge Colorado BJJ Super Cup Tournament

30 Saturday


Sport, martial art and way of life, Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ) is studied at more than 100 clubs in Colorado. Starting at 9 a.m. today, competitors of the sport will meet at Coronado High School (1590 W. Fillmore St., supercupbjj.blogspot.com) for the very first United States-hosted Colorado BJJ Super Cup Tournament. The practice is an offspring of the Japanese martial art form judo, and was made famous by the fighting family, the Gracies. A grappling-oriented style, it focuses largely on the belief that, with the right techniques and leverage, a disadvantaged fighter might prove triumphant over an even stronger foe. Five dollars gets you in the door. — Matthew Grieson

click to enlarge Clay to Treetop, Commonwheel Artists Co-op

31 Sunday


Were the Commonwheel Artists Co-op (102 Cañon Ave., Manitou Springs, commonwheel.com) to rewrite the Church of England's Book of Common Prayer, the funereal passage might go something like: "Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, Clay to Treetop." For it's the latter the Manitou Springs gallery is calling its new exhibition of nature-inspired works by Sherry Brand, Yuko Westover and others. Basket-style flower vases; lampshades spraying flower-shaped lighting; and subtly shaded shots from the Colorado Springs Creative Photography Group are all grouped together in an artistic homage to the elements. Open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., the show runs through April 15. — Bryce Crawford

click to enlarge Chris Voth

1 Monday


Stop me if you've heard this one: An English teacher from Denver moonlights as a comedian. He's invited to try out for a nationally televised comedy contest and is so good, he's then invited to perform at the celebrated Great American Comedy Festival in 2009. Waiting for the punch line? There isn't any; this is the story of Chris Voth, who will be performing tonight at Stargazers Theatre & Event Center (10 S. Parkside Drive, stargazerstheatre.com) in a performance benefiting Urban Peak and honoring City Councilor Jan Martin. Doors open at 6:30, and tickets are $25. — Miguel Bustamante

click to enlarge Instant Composers Pool Orchestra

2 Tuesday


Contrary to popular opinion, ICP doesn't always stand for Insane Clown Posse; it's also the acronym for Instant Composers Pool Orchestra. Bereft of facepaint and horror-core tendencies, this particular ICP is an improvisational jazz group based in Amsterdam and led by drummer Han Bennink, whose jaw-dropping talents have fueled collaborations with artists ranging from avant-noisemaker Peter Brötzmann to the more bebop-inclined jazz legend Eric Dolphy. A typical ICP Orchestra composition, assuming there is such a thing, covers a similarly broad spectrum, from beautifully composed jazz arrangements to relatively anarchist free-for-alls. Tonight, its free Peak FreQuency-sponsored concert begins at 7:30 in UCCS' Berger Hall (1420 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., uccs.edu/~peakfreq) with a brief opening set by the university's Creative Music Honors Ensemble. — Bill Forman


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