Thursday, January 15
At the recently renamed (+) Zeile/Judish, which is temporarily housed in the former Cordell Taylor Gallery space, at 2350 Lawrence Street, the new year takes on added meaning with a makeover that teams top gallery entrepreneurs Ivar Zeile and Ron Judish. They'll make their inaugural statement by presenting Superhighway (new photographs by R. Scott Davis) and Director's Choice, which is the first collaboration by the gallery's newly configured leadership. The latter exhibit will spotlight works by Colorado up-and-comers Patti Hallock, Hunt Rettig and Jon Reitfors; both shows will be celebrated with a reception tonight from 6 to 9 p.m. and will remain on view through February 21; call 303-296-0927.
Denver's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center's annual film festival announces a bouncing-baby offshoot. Seeing Queerly: The Monthly Series, is a new event for the GLBT community. It commences tonight with screenings of No Secret Anymore: The Times of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, an hour-long documentary about two longtime lesbian civil-rights activists (and lovers), at 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. at Arco Iris Designs Gallery, 82 South Broadway. Admission, which benefits the April cinema-fest, is $10 at the door and includes popcorn and drinks; the series continues on the third Thursday of every month. For more information, call 303-733-7743 or log on to www.coloradoglbt.org.
Friday, January 16
Stages are lighting up all over town as 2004 kicks in, and the one at the revived Avenue Theater, 417 East 17th Avenue, is starting the year with a one-man production that's heavy on buzz. Local actor Chris Willard answers the constantly ringing phones -- and plays forty roles -- in Becky Mode's off-Broadway hit Fully Committed, about a jobless actor handling a trendy Manhattan restaurant's reservation line. Shows are at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, today through February 28; to reserve tickets, $18 to $22, call 303-300-9502. And at the Aurora Fox Arts Center, 9900 East Colfax Avenue, director Bev Newcomb-Madden gets serious, following the theater's bubbly Christmas show with Jeffrey Hatcher's Mercy of a Storm, a two-character drama in which a divorcing couple relives their history together on New Year's Eve, 1945. Showtimes are at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays, today through February 15; for tickets, $15 to $20, call 303-361-2910.
The Museum of Contemporary Art/Denver continues its planet-circling spate of shows bound together by an edgy global view with Over One Billion Sold: Conceptual Photography From the People's Republic of China, which features works by eleven photographers who reflect their country's rapid social change in a medium that's relatively new in China and rarely exhibited outside its borders. One of the artists, Wang Qingsong, whose own powerful images include a meditating Buddhist with the Golden Arches emblazoned across his chest, will be present at the opening reception, 6 to 9 p.m. tonight; admission is $5. The show continues at the MCA, 1275 19th Street, through May 9; for details, call 303-298-7554 or log on to www.mcartdenver.org.
Saturday, January 17
Hot music will warm your winter-chilled soul tonight when the Latin Giants of Jazz top off the Longmont Museum's long-running exhibit Latin Jazz with a concert at Vance Brand Auditorium, 600 East Mountain View Avenue. The giants are an all-star collection of veteran musicians of the former Tito Puente Orchestra (the irrepressible Puente passed away in 2000). Folks will be cha-cha-ing in the aisles to tunes by musical greats Puente, Machito, Tito Rodrigeuz and others, beginning tonight at 8 p.m.; for tickets, $15 to $25, call 303-651-8374. And to catch the exhibit before it bids adios on January 25, head to the museum, 400 Quail Road in Longmont.
Sunday, January 18
It would probably help to have a thick, white coat of oily bear fur (and a nice layer of blubber under that), but you'll just have to make do with human accoutrements at today's Polar Bear Run, an annual dash through the snow to benefit the Kempe Children's Foundation. Intrepid participants can bundle up and start slogging beginning at 10 a.m. in Washington Park (congregate on the South High end of the park, at Louisiana Avenue and Gilpin Street). Entry fees range from $15 to $25; for more information or to register in advance, call 303-694-2030 or log on to www.bkbltd.com.
Monday, January 19
Though local Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities seem to stretch their way through the entire month of January, there are always some major ones falling on the holiday itself, which offers a great opportunity for folks to use the day off from everyday life to make a statement. There'll be no lounging around, for instance, for participants in the Marade, Denver's annual march/parade hybrid that starts at the MLK memorial in City Park, 17th Avenue and Colorado Boulevard, and winds its way to the State Capitol Building, at Colfax and Broadway. As always, this year's event sets off through the streets at 10 a.m., after a round of speechifying, and concludes with a program in Civic Center Park; call 303-388-5861, ext. 107, for details. To the east, in Aurora, additional tributes will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Buckingham Square Mall, Havana Street and Mississippi Avenue. In Boulder, the Boulder Public Library, 1000 Canyon Boulevard, hosts a day-long "Celebrate Unity in Our Community" event from 1 to 5 p.m. (immediately following a noon rally on the Boulder County Courthouse lawn, 14th and Pearl streets), with free African and hip-hop dancing, plus storytelling and birthday cake for all; call 303-499-6832 or log on to www.directtrix.com/mlk.
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Tuesday, January 20
Nobody writes a better song than Steve Earle, who defies categorization (unless you dare to classify him as an alt-country rocker/bluesman who's also a singer-songwriter, activist and confessor). The same goes for his delivery, at its best a fiery, visceral process that cuts through the crap to lay bare all the man's anger, angst and compassion in a few split seconds. Tonight he'll put that all out on a veritable silver platter with a solo gig at the Boulder Theater, 2032 14th Street, Boulder; Earle and his guitar will step onto the stage around 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $21.50 to $27.50; call 303-786-7030 or log on to www.bouldertheater.com.
Wednesday, January 21
A young corporate executive runs over an 86-year-old widower and his whole life changes, slowly, in Jeff Baron's drama Visiting Mr. Green, the Denver Center Theatre Company's quiet new-year opener in the small, intimate Jones Theatre, 14th and Curtis streets. It's a perfect venue for the story, in which the cocky exec is ordered by the court to make weekly community-service visits to the lonely old geezer's cluttered home. A "Free for All" performance will be offered tonight at 6:30 p.m. (pick up tickets on a first-come, first-served basis at the Bonfils Center box office beginning at 4:30 p.m.); after that, you'll have to pay $16 to $43 during the regular run, which continues daily except Sundays through March 27. Call 303-893-4100 or log on to www.denvercenter.org.