At the Academy: A roundup of free events

Shakespeare series continues; concert, saguaro talk also planned

2013-09-26T00:00:00Z Shakespeare series continues; concert, saguaro talk also plannedArizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
September 26, 2013 12:00 am  • 

oct. 1

Well-known vocalist sings her original songs

Folk singer, songwriter and guitarist Sabra Faulk brings her talents to the Arizona Senior Academy stage on Tuesday  at 11:30 a.m. She will be joined by violinist Heather Hardy.

Born and raised in Willcox, Faulk has been performing in and around Tucson since the early 1980s. As the daughter of musicians, she went to band rehearsals from the age of 5 and learned to play guitar by age 8. She joined her first band at 19 as a bass player and has spent much of her career playing bass with several Tucson bands.

With musical influences ranging across the many genres she heard from her earliest years — including folk, country, blues, funk, soul and rock ’n’ roll — Faulk began to write her own material and do solo performances, and found that she was developing her own style independent of any particular genre.

She has been nominated for TAMMIE awards (Tucson Area Music Awards) in the bass player, best female vocalist and folk artist categories, and won a TAMMIE for best country band in 1997.

Sabra has performed with some of Tucson’s brightest stars, of whom violinist Hardy is one. For the Tuesday concert, they will perform Faulk’s original songs from her three CDs: “Twenty-Eight Churches and Five Bars,” “Acoustic Angel” and “Providence.” The CDs will be available for purchase at the concert.

Leslie Nitzberg

oct. 2

Shakespeare’s ‘Lear’

an enduring influence

The story of “King Lear,” lifted from an ancient Celtic tale of an aging monarch and his three daughters, is widely regarded as one of Shakespeare’s masterpieces. Yet earlier audiences found the play so depressing it was rarely performed.

A more popular version of Lear emerged in 1681 when Nahum Tate, an Irish poet, turned Shakespeare’s tragedy into treacle in a flowery rewrite that spared the lives of Lear and his daughter Cordelia. Critics panned it, but theatergoers loved it. That Lear dominated the stage until 1838 when a British actor and theater manager restored Shakespeare’s tragic ending and much of the original text.

With “King Lear,” James Reel will give his second of four lectures on Shakespeare’s origins and evolutions at the Arizona Senior Academy at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday (Oct. 2). Reel is the classical music director of Arizona Public Media and a popular lecturer at the Arizona Senior Academy.

Reel will show how the family struggle at the heart of Lear continues to provide inspiration and plot lines for artists with vastly different visions:

In “A Thousand Acres,” which won a Pulitzer Prize, novelist Jane Smiley sets the story of King Lear on a family farm in Iowa.

Of the dozen or so film adaptations, the most compelling is Akira Kurosawa’s “Ran,” a samurai epic in which the king’s daughters necessarily become sons.

Elaine Feinstein’s play, “Lear’s Daughters,” a feminist spin, is billed as a prequel.

And a recent First-Nations production of the play was a first in every respect, featuring an all-Aborigine cast in the setting of a 17th-century Algonquin nation.

Reel’s four-part series explores how the Bard’s compelling plots and characters influenced later artists. The third lecture, on “Othello,” is scheduled for Oct. 16.

Caroline Bates

Oct. 3

All about saguaros, and growing them from seed

How would you like to grow your own saguaro from seed? It might not take as long as you think.

John Rhodes, who will be speaking at the Arizona Senior Academy at 3:30 p.m. next Thursday, has been planting, growing and teaching about saguaros since 1976, and some of his first babies are now growing arms.

Rhodes’ presentation will show the life cycle of saguaros, their importance to the Sonoran Desert ecosystem, how people use them and how to grow them. Afterward, there will be a short workshop with saguaro planting and fruit tasting.

Rhodes worked on a ranch in his youth before beginning his career as a teacher. He holds B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Arizona, and taught biology and photography in the Tucson Unified School District for 30 years. He was the curator of the Tucson Botanical Gardens Butterfly Magic exhibit from its inception until his recent retirement.

He has done educational programs for the Sonoran Arthropod Studies Institute and is a regular lecturer at Colossal Cave Mountain Park, and conducts his own arthropod show titled “Bugging Out.”

How long does it take to grow a saguaro from a seed? Rhodes will tell you at the lecture.

Betty Feinberg

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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