Concert, workshop feature Native American flute

Andrea Matthews will perform on the Native American flute with percussionist Brian Rockholt Tuesday at a lunchtime concert at Academy Village.

The concert will be held in the Great Room of the Arizona Senior Academy from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Tuesday's concert marks a third visit to the village for the married duo.

Classically trained in the silver (Boehm) flute, Matthews holds a bachelor's degree in music education and performance from Southern Oregon University in Ashland, her hometown. She first picked up a Native American-style wooden flute while traveling in Arizona and became enchanted with its sound.

During travels throughout the Southwest, particularly the Four Corners region, Matthews has composed pieces that "represent or evoke the spirit of a location, be it scenic canyon, lively city or prehistoric ruin."

At Tuesday's concert, Matthews will demonstrate a variety of Native American flutes, showing how they are made and what differentiates them from other wind instruments. Rockholt will demonstrate and talk about the ways percussion is used to benefit the ensemble.

After lunch, the two will hold a workshop, Getting Started on the Native American Flute, for those who would like to further explore the instrument. The workshop will be held in the Great Room from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

PSA discoverer questions value of prostate test

How useful is the widely used PSA test in diagnosing potentially fatal prostate cancer? The scientist who discovered the prostate specific antigen in 1970 believes the test is minimally effective and overprescribed.

Richard J. Ablin, research professor of immunobiology and pathology at the UA College of Medicine, will give a lecture at Academy Village next Thursday titled "Prostate Cancer: Every Man Needs a Plan." The Arizona Senior Academy's monthly wellness lecture begins at 3:30 p.m.

Prostate testing remains controversial. While urologists frequently prescribe the test, a federal panel that evaluated cancer screening tests recommended against the PSA test for men over 75.

Ablin says he never supported the test as a screening tool because it detects only a small fraction of prostate cancers and can't distinguish between two types of prostate cancer, only one of them fatal. He feels that too many men have unnecessary biopsies and surgery, with all the associated risks and potential complications.

Ablin said American men have a 16 percent chance of developing prostate cancer but only a 3 percent chance of dying from it.

Ablin received his Ph.D. in microbiology from the State University of New York in Buffalo. A member of Phi Beta Kappa and various professional societies, he has served as vice president of the American College of Cyrosurgery and president of the International Society of Cyrosurgery. He has spoken at many international scientific meetings and written numerous professional journal articles.

UA's Genomics Now Lecture series revisited

Did you miss the Wednesday-evening lecture series on current studies of genetics presented by the University of Arizona College of Science? If so, you can still see and hear them at the Arizona Senior Academy, which is offering repeat performances between Feb. 27 and April 10.

Four of the six events will be digital replays, while two will be live by the lecturers, who will be available to answer questions.

The first in the Academy series will be presented at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday. It will be a digital replay of the introductory lecture by professor Fernando Martinez, "Are Genes the Software of Life?" Martinez is a Regents Professor of pediatrics at the UA and director of the UA Bio5 Institute and the Arizona Respiratory Center.

In his illustrated lecture, Martinez focuses on the differences between mechanistic control by engineering designs or computer software on the one hand, and how DNA may control the performance and/or the evolution of organisms on the other.

The 60-minute lecture will be followed by a 10-minute question-and-answer period.

- Marcia Neugebauer

About Academy Village

• Academy Village is an active-adult community located off Old Spanish Trail six miles southeast of Saguaro National Park East. Its residents support the Arizona Senior Academy, a non-profit charitable organization whose mission includes offering free concerts and lectures to the public.

• Events are held in the Great Room of the Arizona Senior Academy Building adjacent to the Academy Village Community Center, 13715 E. Langtry Lane.

• Due to the popularity of cultural events, nonresidents who want to ensure priority seating are advised to make reservations by email at or by phone at 647-0980. To learn more about the academy, go to online.

• Visitors can buy lunch at the Academy Cafe across the courtyard from the Arizona Senior Academy Building. The cafe is open 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday. Prices range from $4.50 to $9.50. For more information, call the cafe at 647-0903.

- Valerie Anderson - H. Deon Holt