Thrills for the week

By the Bly: Poet, author, translator, editor and controversial men's-movement advocate Robert Bly carries his provocative theorizing of Iron John to the next level by illustrating through mythical stories and fairy tales that contemporary American culture precludes old-fashioned maturity. Bly will discuss and sign The Sibling Society, his new work that portrays modern adults as a bunch of whining, finger-pointing, selfish little kids, today at 2 at the Boulder Public Library Auditorium, 1000 Canyon Blvd., and later at 7 at the Tattered Cover Book Store, 2955 E. 1st Ave. Both events are free; for information, call the library at 441-4114 or the Tattered Cover at 322-7727.

May 20
Standard reissue: In this brave new world, the jazz standard according to vocalist Cassandra Wilson might be "The Last Train to Clarksville" or "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry." So be it. Wilson's smoky, controlled stylings transform everything she touches--from blues tunes by Robert Johnson and Son House to an unadorned, jangling remake of Billie Holiday's stark "Strange Fruit"--into fresh classics for modern times. This diva for the '90s performs tonight at 8 at Bluebird Theater, 3317 E. Colfax; saxophonist Courtney Pine joins Wilson for a not-to-be-missed evening. Tickets are $15; call 322-2308 for reservations and information.

May 21
Down on the farm: Eight friends lay the details of their lives and loves on the table of a country farmhouse in the Western premiere of Terrence McNally's Tony Award-winning play Love! Valor! Compassion!, which opened Friday at the Theatre on Broadway, 13 S. Broadway. Theatre on Broadway fans can enjoy the new production and help the venue out by attending a special fundraising performance and cast reception tonight at 7; proceeds will go toward a down payment on the purchase of the theater's building. Tickets are $35 ($50 couple) tonight or $16 to $18 for regular performances, which continue Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through June 29. For information or reservations call 860-9360.

May 22
Straight talk: Former Democratic senator and presidential candidate George McGovern removed his political hat to write Terry: My Daughter's Life-and-Death Struggle With Alcoholism, a personal account of his daughter's history of substance abuse and her subsequent death at the age of 45. McGovern will discuss and sign copies of the memoir, based on journals, letters, interviews and official records, tonight at 5 p.m. at the Tattered Cover Book Store, 2955 E. 1st Ave. Copies of the Random House tome go for $21; pick yours up early in case there's a crowd. For details call 322-7727.

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