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Current events

The annual Art Auction at Anderson Ranch Arts Center has been a high point of the Roaring Fork Valley summer for years, a celebration not only of art, but of the Ranch and its community values. Monothon attempts to capture the spirit of the Art Auction, but in miniature – a dozen or so local artists rather than a hundred from around the world, comparatively modest prices for the art, and an indoor setting in the Schermer Meeting Hall, rather than outside on the Ranch grounds. The third edition of Monothon, on Tuesday, March 9, features dinner prepared by the Viceroy hotel’s Rob Zack, wines, and works made in the Anderson Ranch print shop by Stanley Bell, Alex Blau, Jody Guralnick, Bradley Walters and others.

As the Broadway musical becomes more and more about big-budget, star-driven, escapist extravaganzas, “Rent” feels more and more like a throwback – a piece of art that looks at the world the way it actually is. But Jonathan Larson’s musical about the Bohemian life in New York’s East Village, with an unblinking examination of AIDS and homelessness, premiered just 14 years ago. David Ledingham, who was raised in Aspen before setting out to chase his own Bohemian dreams on the New York stage, knows plenty about the pursuit of creative ideals. He directs Basalt High School’s production of “Rent,” the first local staging of the rock opera. There is a matinee on Sunday, March 7 at the Basalt Middle School.

The English Beat return to town on Sunday, March 7, and it shows how far Belly Up Aspen has come in five years that the British ska band is not necessarily the week’s highlight. In fact, they might be only the fourth-best British band on the club’s calendar, as they compete with groove band the New Mastersounds (Monday, March 8), jammers Gomez and promising modern rockers One Eskimo, who make up the bill on Tuesday, March 9. Those who favor American music also have numerous reasons to visit Belly Up: funk saxophonist Maceo Parker plays Thursday, March 11; multi-cultural L.A. pack Ozomatli is set for Friday, March 12; and Stockholm Syndrome, featuring singer-songwriter Jerry Joseph and Widespread Panic bassist Dave Schools, plays Saturday, March 13. Come to think of it, the English Beat might not even be the highlight of their night, as they are joined by the ever-entertaining L.A. group Fishbone on the Spring Skaward tour.


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