Sunday April 24 Pedals to the medal: We all know about local hero Christopher Taylor, who won the bronze medal in last year's Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, but what about Italian virtuoso Simone Pedroni? He's the dude who took the gold, and he'll perform in a recital tonight at 8 in Macky Auditorium on the CU-Boulder campus. Tickets range from $6 to $28; call 492-8008 for further information.

Art varmints: Yahoo! It's time for them big-time Western artistes to strut their stuff again at The Fort Restaurant's annual Western Art Rendezvous. A reception for the exhibit, juried by Clare Evans and featuring fine traditional and contemporary works by artists statewide, takes place from 3 to 5 this afternoon. The Fort--part eatery and part living history museum--is located at 19192 Hwy. 8 in Morrison, just off Hwy. 285. If you don't make it today, the show hangs through June 3 and will be the focus of several Sunday artist demonstrations in May. Call 697-4771.

Monday April 25 The write stuff: It's a literary tour de force in the Denver-Boulder area tonight, with two classy 7:30 readings at the Tattered Cover and Boulder Book Stores. The TC presents New Mexico's celebrated husband-and-wife fiction-writing duo Antonya Nelson and Robert Boswell--both of whom not only write but also share a teaching berth at New Mexico State. Nelson will give a taste of her recent collection of short works, Family Terrorists, while Boswell reads a bit of his own short story tome, Living to Be a Hundred. Call 322-7727 for details. In Boulder, you'll have a chance to hear outrageous novelist Will Self when he reads from My Idea of Fun, an inventive and modern work already tagged a cult favorite. Call 447-2074.

Tuesday April 26 A little piece of her heart: A musical based on the life of Janis Joplin is sure to be a roller coaster of drugs and decadence, but the surprise is this: Love, Janis really points out that behind the lionized blues/rock singer's in-your-face onstage persona was a gentle, sensitive and abused soul. The play, amply and lovingly peppered with Joplin's songs, debuts tonight at 6:30 in the Stage Theatre, located in the Helen Bonfils Theatre Complex at 13th and Curtis. Performances continue at 6:30 p.m. Monday through Wednesday and 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday until May 28; there will be three 1:30 p.m. matinees on May 14, 21 and 28. For ticket information and details call 893-4100.

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