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 V.21 No.27 | July 5 - 11, 2012 

Culture Shock

She’s Not There

No, The Woman in Black is not an enigmatic, art-house Johnny Cash biopic starring Cate Blanchett. It’s playwright Stephen Mallatratt’s adaptation of the 1983 novel by Susan Hill, revolving around mysterious child fatalities and a possibly haunted Victorian-era British manor. Arthur Kipps is a lawyer who goes to examine the estate of one of his late clients. Encounters with leery, secretive townies and bone-chilling apparitions set the stage for a grim tale that falls thematically between The Wicker Man and, well, every creepy kid-horror plot ever scripted.

Matthew Naegeli directs and stars in the two-person play being staged for one weekend only at the Martineztown House of Neighborly Services (808 Edith NE, 242-4333). The community center has been around for nearly a century, but Woman in Black marks its first stage play. Performances are Friday and Saturday, July 6 and 7, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, July 8, at 2 p.m. Proceeds from the $12 admission go back into MHNS programs.

Rural Renewal

Bosque rendering by Margy O’Brien
[click to enlarge]
Bosque rendering by Margy O’Brien
When our forests are being ravaged by flames, it's natural to bemoan the loss of our flora and fauna; to wag fingers at dumb people errantly tossing smoldering cigarette butts; to search for answers among the wreckage. It's also inevitable that fires will roar along these arid desert plains each year, without fail.

The women of arts collective The Luna Project are exploring this theme—and the regeneration that comes from such decimation—in the show Begin Again, opening Saturday, July 7, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Open Space Visitor Center Gallery (6500 Coors NW, 897-8831).

"We started planning this show a year ago with the knowledge that we're going to try to have this dialogue during high-fire season," says Open Space Coordinator Joshua Willis, who helped curate the show along with Luna members. "It's essentially a dialogue with the cyclical nature of nature."

The 13-odd artists participating in the show used the Bosque around the center that was torched in a fire two years ago as inspiration. Several of them even took charcoal from the site and incorporated it into their pieces. "Death isn't always death, sometimes it's life," says Willis, referring to the regrowth coming from the still-living roots of burnt down trees. "It's just on a different time scale than we're accustomed to."

The show runs through Aug. 26. Visit cabq.gov/openspace/visitorcenter.html for more info.

 
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