New Findings by Ian K. Millard
Opening reception: 6 to 9 p.m., Saturday, July 3
On display 1 to 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, through July 31
My Addiction Gallery
439 N. Sixth Ave., Suite 159
Denver-based stencil and spray-paint artist Ian K. Millard was trying to come up with a theme for his new gallery show when it finally hit him.
"I was looking for a theme for a show in Tucson, and I talked to Harvey (Kivel, manager of My Addiction Gallery) about doing a desert theme, and I went to a natural-history museum and kind of got inspired by it," said Millard.
He was at a dinosaur exhibit when he realized that he could incorporate ancient skeletons into his prints. The works were created using Millard's technique of using intricate hand-cut stencils to apply multiple layers of spray paint and create images on wooden boxes.
There will be eight new pieces in the show, all of which Millard said are fairly large—and all certainly eye-grabbing.
The pieces of art explore the concept of a modern archeological dig, melding the bones of prehistoric creatures with "bling" and other accessories associated with modern hip-hop culture.
"I wanted to put a modern spin on something that is really old," said Millard. "I hope that seeing these ancient structures in modern surroundings will have the audience scratching their heads a little bit."
This is Millard's first Tucson showing, he said, and the artist will attend the gallery opening on July 3. The exhibit will be on display throughout the rest of July. Visit www.iansprints.com for more information on the artist. —A.L.
The Fireside Chats With FDR
7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, July 2 and 3; 3 p.m., Sunday, July 4
Comedy Playhouse and School
3620 N. First Ave.
James Gooden's fascination with Franklin D. Roosevelt has lasted his entire life, and as a result, the actor has an enormous knowledge of the late president—even his quirks.
In tribute to FDR, James Gooden wrote The Fireside Chats in 2007, and Gooden has starred as FDR in the play several times since then. Wife Elizabeth Gooden plays Eleanor Roosevelt.
The show's premise revolves around FDR's "Fireside Chats," in which FDR took to the radio at the height of the Great Depression and war. In his first such chat, he urged the American people to have faith in the banking system and support his New Deal measures. These 30 chats would go on to cover topics such as the declaration of war with Japan, the U.S. economic condition and work-relief programs.
Gooden said he has stretched the show out more and more since it debuted in 2007. Initially only about the chats themselves, the show has grown to offer a sense of Roosevelt's mannerisms and quirks. Gooden wove the plot together to reveal the wit and wisdom of the 32nd president of the United States.
"When we have a show coming up, we go back to the source material, just to remember what his mannerisms are, and inevitably, we'll find something to come up with better material," said Gooden.
Running—appropriately enough—on Independence Day weekend, the play will serve as a great character study of Roosevelt, and perhaps fuel your patriotic flame.
"We were encouraged to keep doing (the show), because people just love it, and that's the sustaining element," said Gooden. "If people didn't really go nuts for it, we'd have let it go."
Admission is $18 general, and $16 for seniors. Call for reservations. —A.L.
"Page to the Stage: The Outrageous New Play Festival Series"
7:30 p.m., Wednesday-Sunday; 1:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, through July 18
Beowulf Alley Theatre Company
11 S. Sixth Ave.
The Tucson's theater scene's ample talent will be on display at Beowulf Alley's "Page to the Stage: The Outrageous New Play Festival Series."
Three local playwrights will present their unpublished plays with minimal use of sets, lighting, sound effects, props and costumes—the focus is on the words.
The First Third, by John Vornholt (an occasional Tucson Weekly contributor) and directed by Dave Sewell, takes place on Dec. 1, 1969, the date of a nationwide televised Vietnam War draft lottery. Vornholt actually watched the program, and he narrowly missed the draft.
"It was the most dramatic event of my life," said Vornholt. "I was in a room full of college seniors, just waiting to see if we'd be going off to war. It was very surreal, and I want that to show in the play. I wrote this play 40 years ago, but with the current wars going on, I felt that this could be topical."
The Language of Flowers, by Gavin Kayner and directed by Steve Anderson, deals with two sisters, one of whom is convinced that her doll is a living baby.
"This particular concept came from an actual thing that I witnessed in a restaurant," Kayner said. "An older lady was feeding a doll, and treating it like it was an actual child. It was so strange."
A Work of Art, by Jonathan Northover and directed by Lydia Borowicz, deals with an owner of an art gallery, and explores how far a human will go to explore a new idea.
To find out what play is being performed on what day, visit the website. Admission is $12 for one play, or $30 for all three. —A.L.
Celebrate a Day Early
Old Fashioned Independence Day
Events begin at 10 a.m., Saturday, July 3
Tubac Presidio State Historic Park
Exit 34 on Interstate 19
Fourth of July is right around the corner, and families all over Tucson are getting ready to light up their grills and enjoy some fireworks. However, if you want to instead get away—perhaps you don't have a functioning grill—consider heading south down Interstate 19 to Tubac on Saturday, July 3.
The community will host its annual Old Fashioned Independence Day Celebration at the Tubac Presidio State Historic Park. From 10 a.m. to noon, children will have a plethora of classic games to enjoy, including cakewalks, sack races, a rubber-duck ring toss, hula-hooping, face-painting and crafts. Admission to the park is free during the event.
Kim Etherington, the outgoing Tubac Chamber of Commerce executive director, said the event offers a great way for the community to come and spend the holiday together.
"This is the sixth year that we have hosted this event, and we are pleased to bring it back for another year," she said. "We are also bringing back our dunk tank, because it's really a big hit for the kids."
Tubac's art galleries, artist studios and shops will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and area restaurants will offer breakfast, lunch and dinner.
But wait ... what's an Independence Day—even if it's being celebrated a day early—without fireworks?
Tubac Golf Resort and Spa will set the night sky ablaze with its annual fireworks celebration. Food vendors, DJ'd music and face-painters will be present, and admission is free (though parking will cost $7 per car). Blankets and chairs are OK to bring, but coolers are prohibited. The resort is also offering VIP packages (including a buffet dinner and special seating) that costs $40 for adults and $15 kids; call (520) 398-3513 for reservations. —D.O.