As a former student of theater at UNM, I vividly recall the excitement generated by the Words Afire Festival. It meant an opportunity for more aspiring actors to get stage time and budding playwrights to see their works actually performed. Months of preparation madness followed by weeks of performances created a draining, frenzied chaos worth every moment. Words Afire is a boon to the Albuquerque theater scene and we're lucky to have it. This year's festival opens on Thursday, April 17, with Pajaros de Mi Sangre: My Blood Birds by Don Garcia at Rodey Theatre and The Feather by Mars Mråz at Theatre X. Tickets to all shows at Rodey are $15 general, $10 seniors and $7 students, and $10 general, $8 seniors and $7 students at Theatre X, available at the UNM ticket office (925-5858). Keep an eye on the Arts Calendar for a complete list of all Words Afire productions or visit wordsafire.unm.edu. Support our university's theater program—it cultivates the future of performance art in our city.
Now here is a subject one doesn’t see poetry address all that often—especially with such a warm, complicated embrace. To Philip Schultz, recent co-winner of the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for poetry, failure is not a pejorative but a state of being. Try to appreciate the bounty of the world, several of these poems suggest, and you will likely fail; try to ignore it and you will fail as well.
Legend has it that Puddles began his journey into the land of kitsch with a chance encounter in an Atlanta bar in 1998. The bartender heard him sing after taking a show flyer and tracking him down at his gig at a flea market. The sad clown singing karaoke on a boombox blew him away and now that bartender and Puddles travel the world together. His career exploded in 2013 when he was featured on Postmodern Jukebox's cover of “Royals” by Lorde. The YouTube video instantly went viral and has over 22 million views to date. They call him the “sad clown with the golden voice.” But don't be frightened by the seven foot clown. He soulfully serenades you into the evening as Puddles Pity Party takes over the KiMo Theatre on Thursday, Oct. 18 with beautifully arranged covers of rock and pop classics. The show is from 8 to 10pm for an all-ages crowd. Puddles won't be so sad if you can cough up the asking price of $35 to $100 for a ticket. Don't let Puddles be sad.
Thrill the World is hitting Albuquerque! Come out to the learn the choreography and help break the world record for the world's largest simultaneous dance via the six-minute Michael Jackson smash hit at Tiguex Park on Tuesday, Oct. 23 from 6:30 to 7:30pm. The free Thriller Class requires a waiver to be filled out prior to the session, which can be found at the link below. The big event is on Oct. 27, but registration closes at midnight on Oct. 24, so make sure you register. This event is for all-ages, so look for Lina and Karen by the stage at the park and get ready to get zombie-fied for the record shattering event. Find the waiver at: sites.google.com/site/thrilltheworldalbuquerque/learn-the-dance/forms