THRILLS

Wednesday January 25 West meets west: The names of Sandy Greenhills and Urbana Asphalt West may not sound familiar to you, but you read about them all the time. In fact, this divorcing couple is regularly splashed all over the newspapers. But the bickerers are actually representatives of the urban and rural wests, so their names are merely symbolic. They'll clash, all in fun, during Can This Marriage Be Saved?, a mock divorce trial sponsored by Boulder's Center of the American West and starring CU-Boulder historian Patricia Nelson Limerick as Urbana, the sophisticated wife who wants to work things out with Sandy, the despoiled husband played by lawyer Jamie Sudler. The proceedings will be called to order at 7 p.m. sharp in the Colorado History Museum, 1300 Broadway. Admission is $5 ($4 members); for additional information call 866-4686.

Net worth: Thanks to the info highway, complete strangers get to know one another and sometimes form a kind of community. Local photographer Mark Sink has been on that road, where he hooked up and exchanged images with fellow shutterbugs across the country--via the Internet and America Online. The result is Off the Highway, a juried national show coordinated by Sink and currently on display at Rule Modern and Contemporary, 1801 Wynkoop St., Ste. 260, in the Ice House. Contributors range from local (Denver's Eric Helland) to high-profile (California's Jock Sturges), with much fine work in between; see the exhibit weekdays through February 25. Call 298-1310.

Thursday January 26 Tools of the trad: Traditional jazz and popular music, from the lively piano solos of Jelly Roll Morton to the synchronized tunes of the Andrews Sisters, will fill the stately Paramount Theatre tonight, when James Dapogny's Chicago Jazz Band, an ensemble at ease with Chicago and Dixieland jazz, ragtime and swing, performs--alone and together--with the harmonizing Chenille Sisters. Tickets for this fun 7:30 p.m. concert, sponsored by the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, are $18 and $22; reserve seats by calling 431-3939 or 290-TIXS. The Paramount is located downtown, at 1621 Glenarm Pl.

Waiting for g'day: Stop twiddling your Australophilic thumbs, mates. It's Australia Day at the Temple Events Center, 1595 Pearl St., where the South Pacific American Cultural Exchange will be throwing a party, Slices of Oz: A South Australian Extravaganza, honoring none other than the noble Land Down Under. From 6 to 10 tonight, you'll be able to sample Aussie wines and cuisine, mingle with dignitaries and enjoy performances by aboriginal storyteller Ernie Dingo and country artist Leighton B. Watts. Admission to the entire wingding is $45 ($37.50 SPACE members); $10 student tickets are available for the concert portion of the evening, which begins at 8. To order tickets call 297-1200.

Friday January 27 Bach to Bach to Bach: Few composers are more well loved than Bach, whose pleasing works have become a part of the world's musical fabric. And those works will make their magic again this weekend at the Boulder Bach Festival, a three-day Bach barrage that begins tonight at 8 with a bill that includes the fabulous Concerto for Three Harpsichords in C Major and the Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 and ends at 2 Sunday with a magnificent Passion According to St. Matthew, featuring the festival orchestra and chorus with various soloists. But the highlight comes during tomorrow's chamber concert, when renowned baroque violinist Sergiu Luca performs at 8. Tickets are $51 to $61 for all three concerts, or $20 to $24 for individual programs (students $10). All concerts will be held in the Grusin Music Hall, Imig Music Building, CU-Boulder campus; for further information call 494-3159. Long arm of the lawmakers: Equal opportunity in politics is not such a new concept--at least not in Colorado, where the Hispanic population has had a voice in government for decades. Shaping the Laws of the Land: Hispanos in the Colorado Legislature, a new exhibit at the Museo de las Americas, 861 Santa Fe Dr., follows the trend through five chronological sections, beginning in 1846 and continuing to the present, covering the impact of the Mexican-American War, the drive toward--and beyond--Colorado statehood, the rise of Ku Klux Klan activities in the state, the Depression years and World War II and, finally, the activism of the '60s. Included are photographs and biographies of 75 Hispanos who served in the legislature during various periods, culled from the Richard T. Castro Book Project. The exhibit, which opens today, runs through March 12. For details and museum hours call 425-3100.

Saturday January 28 Fine tuning: Sentimentally old-fashioned yet utterly contemporary, solo acoustic guitarist Adrian Legg displays much-admired chops, both tuneful and technical, whenever he sits down to play. Legg not only possesses a mathematical genius for understanding the mysteries of his instrument--from DADGAD to Nashville and every tuning in between--but he's also an entertaining, quirky performer who tells eccentric stories while whipping off melodies steeped in many traditions and who mixes lugubrious waltzes with lilting bluegrass or misty Celtic tones. He appears tonight at 7 at the Bluebird Theater, a near-perfect listening room at 3317 E. Colfax. To purchase tickets, $10, call 322-2308.

Here today, famous tomorrow: The list of big names--actors, comedians and Saturday Night Live cast members--who got their start performing with Chicago's Second City troupe, the grand old ancestor of today's prolific improv collectives, is long and astonishing: Alan Alda, Joan Rivers, Shelley Long and Martin Short all passed through, along with numerous colleagues of note. The current version of the Second City National Touring Group, performing tonight at 8 at the Teikyo Loretto Heights Theater, 3001 S. Federal Blvd., is just as anonymous as the past ensembles started out to be, but they still turn on the satire full blast, and they still may all be destined for bigger and better things. Tickets for the performance are $15; call 937-4205 or 830-TIXS.

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