Wednesday June 22 Siren songs: Guitarist Ottmar Liebert knows what the view looks like from the top of the new-age charts. His music--shooting off from a passionate home base of flamenco toward unknown worlds that encompass jazz and other global sounds--defines the genre. And Liebert's unmistakable instrumental prowess helps carry it off wonderfully. Accompanied by Luna Negra, an extraordinary backup band with everything from dumbeks to synthesizers, Liebert will perform tonight at Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Rd., Boulder. Tickets for the 8 p.m. concert range from $16 to $20; call 440-7666.
Sow's ears and silk purses: Will DIA get its due? What about Coors Field? The only way to find out is to attend the second annual Orchids and Onions People's Design Awards, this evening in the Houston Fine Arts Center's Corkin Theatre, 7150 E. Montview Blvd. Ten well-designed Orchids and eight poorly conceived Onions, selected by a jury of city celebrities, will receive kudos--or raspberries--at 7:30. Admission is $10 ($8 students); to reserve seats call 892-1188.
Thursday June 23 Loosen your belts: A favorite ethnic fair returns to Denver this week for four days of fabulous Greek food and dance. The annual Greek Festival, which combines a bazaar of authentic Greek clothing, jewelry and crafts with mouth-watering shish kebabs and baklava, opens today at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 4610 E. Alameda Ave. Festival hours are 4 to 11 p.m. today; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and noon to 8 on Sunday; gate admission is $1 (or $3 after 9 p.m.--when the bazouki band tunes up and the dancing gets wild). For more information call 388-9315.
The family that picks together: The grass doesn't get any bluer than this. Led by brother Peter, who started out as one of Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys and whose distinctive, pining voice is as pure as the Blue Ridge rain, the Rowan Brothers preserve traditional American acoustic music while making it sound utterly brand-new. The Rowans will be guests of the Swallow Hill Music Association tonight at 8 at the Mercury Cafe, 2199 California St., where they'll celebrate their new album, Peter Rowan and the Rowan Brothers. To reserve a seat call 777-1003; tickets are $12.
Friday June 24 Fly patterns: Huck Finn would be first in line to see Gone Fishin', a new show opening at the Robischon Gallery. And he'd be carrying his pole with him. Featuring works by fly fisher/ painters Ken Iwamasa and Richard Thompson, as well as mixed media by Gary Sweeney, the exhibit focuses on the stuff of fishing--images include feathery flies and rods, trout, dragonflies and the lovely intimation of the great outdoors. A reception takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. at the gallery, 1740 Wazee St.; the show hangs around through September 3. Call 298-7788.
Orchestral maneuvers: It's the first night out of the chute for summer's Colorado Music Festival, an event gathering musicians from all over the world for its sixteenth year as a Boulder mainstay. Maestro Giora Bernstein returns to Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Rd., to conduct the festival orchestra through works by Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Brahms tonight at 8 p.m.; featured guest artist and Van Cliburn medal winner Christopher Taylor provides some opening-night excitement on stage. Tickets range between $9 and $29; for information about this and other festival events (continuing at Chautauqua through August 12) call 449-2413.
The world at your feet: Anything goes at the Colorado SummerFest, a weekend event celebrating art, music and dance from every corner of the planet. Brought to you by the same folks who put on the Colorado Indian Market and Western Art Roundup each winter, the diverse festival--featuring everything from Maori, Pacific Northwest Coast Indian and Mexican Yaqui dancers to Navajo, Latin American and New Orleans-style musicians--begins today at the Aurora Public Market, 14200 E. Exposition near I-225 and Mississippi. You won't want to miss appearances by Prairie Home Companion regular Peter Ostroushko, the Klezmatics or the ReBirth Brass Band, so take note: The fest is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. today and tomorrow and from 10 a.m. to 7 Sunday. Call 290-TIXS for tickets, $10, or buy them at the door, $12 ($6 kids 4-12, under 4 free).
Saturday June 25 Where there's a Will: America's favorite cowpoke philosopher comes to life in Lance Brown's one-man show, A Tribute to Will Rogers. Equipped with a bucket of wry humor, cowboy songs and wisdom culled from the Rogers repertoire, Brown appears tonight at 8 at the Swallow Hill Music Hall, 1905 S. Pearl St. For tickets ($10, $8 members) call 777-1003.
Peace, man: You can all pretend for a day that it's the Summer of Love and you're wearing a headband in Golden Gate Park at the Concert for Colorado, a daylong musical extravaganza headlined by the Allman Brothers Band. But the roster doesn't start and stop there--other guests include Bay Area stalwart Paul Kantner and his Jefferson Starship, along with other counterculture relics who can still crank it out just fine: Arlo Guthrie, Leon Russell and Poco. Admission to the affair, which takes place from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. outdoors at the Auraria Campus Athletic Fields, is $12.60 in advance ($15 day of show); reserve tickets by calling 290-TIXS or call 623-7669 for general information.
Be a sport: Everyone will get into the act today at the Family Hike and Bike Festival, a day of active events for all ages up at Winter Park. There will be free guided nature hikes and mountain-bike rides thoughout the day, a mountain-bike expo and novice bike contests for the kids, as well as the everyday Winter Park summer attractions--rides on the Alpine Slide, miniature golf, chairlift rides and a new human maze that will make you feel like a giant white rat. It's just the right cure for cabin fever, so pack up the family, the bikes and a picnic and head for the hills. They should call this place Summer Park. For additional information call 892-0961.
Sunday June 26 Another country: Fiddle maestro Vassar Clements--influenced, but not confined, by bluegrass--is a musical traveler who calls his finished product "hillbilly jazz." Fusing swing, jazz and country sounds, Clements turns out some of the sweetest American music this side of an old Bob Wills record. And he'll be doing just that tonight at 7 at the Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder. Tickets are $15.75; call 290-TIXS to get yours.
Monday June 27 An arresting diversion: Director Alex Cox has a way with a cult classic--his films include Sid and Nancy and the irreverent Repo Man. His latest, Highway Patrolman, has all the right markings--a Mexican cop, all kinds of corruption, drug runners and car wrecks--for yet another such underground favorite. You can catch Highway Patrolman at the Mayan Theatre, 1st and Broadway, where it closes out a short run tomorrow. Vroom! For showtimes call 744-6796.
Tuesday June 28 Belly up to the bard: The tradition of Shakespeare performed outdoors has a regional home in Boulder's Colorado Shakespeare Festival, an annual summer theater festival staging various works by the master. This year's slate includes a cornucopia of comedies and dramas including The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra--to be held in the Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre--and Twelfth Night, inside at the University Theatre (both stages are located on the CU-Boulder campus). Box suppers from Pour La France!--for pre-Shakespeare dining on the lawn--are available for $12 each; for intellectual nourishment, there are Green Shows each evening at 7 with period music and dance and a strolling Will S., who chats amiably with picnickers about Elizabethan life, as well as public lectures every Sunday at 6:30 p.m. For tickets (they run $10 to $28) to tonight's performance at 8 of Two Gentlemen or other plays (showing in repertory through August 14), call the festival box office at 492-0554.
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What's happening in town? From underground club nights to the biggest outdoor festivals, our top picks for the week's best events will always keep you in on the action.