This Week's Day-by-Day Picks

Thursday, January 20

Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House tells the story of Nora Helmer, a woman ruled by her father and her husband, who awakens from her unexamined life of domestic comfort when her marriage is put to the test. OMayO's A Selfish Sacrifice, premiering today at 8 p.m. at the Space Theatre in the Denver Performing Arts Complex, reimagines Ibsen's 1879 play in a contemporary setting in New York City. In Selfish, Nora is reinvented as Akumma Obinna Bobagunwa (Aku), the wife of a Nigerian diplomat working at the United Nations. As Aku begins to appreciate and adapt to her new surroundings, she begins to question the subordinate position that women in traditional African marriages are forced to occupy. Slowly, her marriage begins to unravel. Though infused with a distinct African feel and set in a different time and place, the work aspires to the same profound emotional impact as Ibsen's original. Tickets, $38 to $45, are available at 303-893-4100 or www.denvercenter.org.

Friday, January 21

Winner of the Grand Jury Award at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, as well as a Special Jury Prize at Sundance, first-time filmmaker Rodney Evans's Brother to Brother tells the story of Perry, a young, black, gay artist whose coming of age is inspired by the works of Richard Bruce, famed short-story writer and vagabond poet of the Harlem Renaissance. In juxtaposing Perry's growth with the experiences of the elderly icon, the film bridges nearly a century of time to contrast the lives of contemporary black men with those who paved the way, such as Langston Hughes, James Baldwin and Wallace Thurmond. Denver National Theatre Conservatory graduate Duane Boutte, now a leading New York actor, stars as the young Richard Bruce. Brother premieres tonight at the Starz FilmCenter, 900 Auraria Parkway, at 7:15 p.m.; Boutte will be on hand for a Q&A afterward. Screenings continue daily through January 27; tickets, $5.50 to $8.50, are available at the box office. Call 303-820-FILM or visit www.starzfilmcenter.com for more information.

Saturday, January 22

In 1938, photographer John Suhay sold his first portrait to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for $3. Today that same amount would cover the cost of admission for a child to Suhay's one-man show, Candid Miscellaneous: The Photographic Treasures of John Suhay, opening today at the Sangre de Cristo Arts Center, 210 North Santa Fe Avenue in Pueblo, where Suhay serves as artist-in-residence. Times change -- and, fortunately, Suhay was there to capture them with his iconic, Life -magazine-inspired documentary photographs. For more than forty years, Suhay, 81, has photographed Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Pueblo, Colorado, capturing slices of life in black and white that not only tell the tale of those two cities, but offer timeless glimpses of America. "You feel like you're looking at your own historyŠit's about Pueblo, but it speaks to the entire nation," comments curator Jina Pierce. Images of children playing with a water fountain and couples enjoying a roller-coaster ride at a state fair seem at once unique to their location and representative of anywhere in America. Guest-curating the show are nationally renowned photographer Andrea Modica and Jello Biafra, former lead singer of the Dead Kennedys. The exhibit runs through May 14; tickets are $3-$4. For information, call 1-719-295-7200.

Sunday, January 23

With cowboys come Indians, and just as the Stock Show rolls into town every year, so, too, does the Colorado Indian Market and Southwest Showcase. Today is the last day of this year's version of the popular festival, which brings hundreds of top artists from across the nation to Denver to display their creations. In addition to the abundant arts and crafts, the market features an Indian food court; a Navajo weaving market; Hawkquest, an educational show using live birds of prey such as eagles, hawks and owls; a performance by Ancient Winds, a group of musicians from the Andes Mountains; and appearances by country star Holly Dunn and Native American actor Steve Reevis, who was in Dances With Wolves, Fargo and The Missing, among other films. The show runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Denver Merchandise Mart, 451 East 58th Avenue. Admission is $9 at the door, free for children twelve and under. Visit www.indianmarket.net for details.

Monday, January 24

For her popular and critically acclaimed Irene Kelly mystery series, national best-selling author Jan Burke has earned a number of high-profile citations: an Edgar, a Macavity award, an Agatha and an Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine Readers award, to name a few. Who knows what prize she'll bring home for Bloodlines, the greatly anticipated addition to her series? The book tells the story of a longstanding mystery that has outlasted the careers of numerous good journalists and now threatens to end Kelly's career, if not her life. Fans of Burke's brainteasers can meet the author and have their books signed this evening at 7:30 p.m. at the Tattered Cover in Cherry Creek, 2955 East First Avenue. Call 303-322-7727 for the skinny.

Tuesday, January 25

Artist C.J. Garst has been schizophrenic all of his adult life. He suffered his first psychotic breakdown in 1970, shortly after returning from a four-year stint in the Marines. Since then, the delusions have never wavered, forcing him into years of psychotherapy and harsh prescription drugs. And while his condition shuts him off from the world to the point where he rarely communicates verbally, his drawings offer glimpses of his unique experience. At first glance, they appear to be the childlike scrawlings of an ambitious kindergartner. But upon further review, the strange works in The Drawings and Thoughts of C.J. Garst, a show put together by the artist's brother, Tim Garst, at Paris on the Platte, provide ample material for discussion. One features a boy with broken glasses standing over a bike near a well, a macabre violinist looming nearby. Another depicts a bedroom with an upturned bed and an eerie door seen inside a mirror. Most of Garst's drawings are untitled and unexplained, leaving interpretation of his attempts at communication up to the viewer. Pieces range in price from $55 to $85 and are on display through January at 1553 Platte Street; call 303-455-2451.

Wednesday, January 26

In the late nineteenth century, ambitious prospectors flocked to the Rocky Mountains in search of instant fortune. Leadville, the highest incorporated town in America, served as the epicenter of the quest for silver and gold. Some found their fortune in the difficult climate, but most left disappointed, their abandoned mines the only testament to their presence. But regardless of what wealth the mines yielded, they also unleashed a slew of toxic chemicals, such as arsenic, lead and cadmium, that poisoned the water and soil. Since 1983, Leadville has been on the Environmental Protection Agency's National Priorities List to clean up these pollutants, and the town's citizens -- the sort of stubborn, independent types that such a harsh, impossible landscape would inevitably yield -- have sometimes chafed at the outside intervention. Author Gillian Klucas details the often heated and heavy-handed wrangling between the small mining town and the federal government, which continues to this day, in her book Leadville: The Struggle to Revive an American Town. Klucas will discuss her book and more in a lecture titled "Leadville's Mining Past: Not Paved in Gold," tonight at 7 p.m. at the Colorado History Museum, 1300 Broadway, as part of the museum's 2005 Authors Lecture Series. Tickets are $5.50 for members, $7 for non-members. For more information, call 303-866-4686 or go to www.coloradohistory.org.

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