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Stage & Canvas 

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Cupid's Bow Is A Semi-Automatic This Month

Yes, the 25th Annual Babe Ruth Birthday Party at Nemo's was great and (needless to say) we were very grateful for all the hot dogs. But the one anniversary we've been waiting impatiently for since the start of the year is going to be at the Corktown Tavern on 2/25 – and we expect all of you to be there! For a quarter of a century, The Erotic Poetry & Music Festival has been a joyous and eclectic celebration of Detroit's hormonal spirit with many of the city's most talented artists and entertainers featured on the roster. Sue Static assures us that 2012 will be no less exciting, so be advised that provocative verse, curvy choreography, sizzling spoken word and visual aphrodisiacs are being provided on this august occasion in February by the likes of Hayley Jane, Chopper Peshkepia, Tara Lazaroff, Audra Kubat, Detroit Dizzy Dames, Jeff Hocking and others. Erotic edibles (no hot dogs) will be provided by Debbie Richey and there will be sexy wares from Sweet Shalon. Jimmy Doom (currently residing in The Big Easy) can't make it, but he's certain Peter Schorn and The Impaler will emcee with dignity and aplomb as usual. $10 admission with doors opening at 9 p.m. 1716 Michigan Avenue. Special note: Partial proceeds benefit Paws With A Cause, one of this column's favorite charities.

Panache!

Cyrano de Bergerac! Swordsman, poet, lover! Portrayed by Jose Ferrer, Gerard Depardieu and Mr. Magoo! Immortalized in an opera! Updated by Steve Martin! Yes, we're talking about the man who is the very essence of romantic chivalry. And the man and his passionate proboscis are both taking bows right now with the current production at the Hilberry – a production, we hasten to add, taken from Frank Langella's adaptation of Rostand's classic play. Assuming you require a modest precis of the plot: Cyrano loves Roxane, who is being pursued by Christian, who lacks the eloquence to state his case. Our hero, whose ardor is stymied by a nose herculean in size, acts as a go-between. If you want more, stride manfully or proceed ladylike to the Wayne State campus and purchase a ticket before our boy bids us adieu next month. More: wayne.edu/theatre.

Prints!

The well-deserved attention paid to the DIA's recent Rembrandt exhibit somewhat overshadowed another showcase currently on display there. May we therefore draw your attention (and offer up our belated praise) now to Once Upon a Time: Prints and Drawings That Tell Stories. This overview of graphic illustration with works drawn from the museum's own archives and collections affords a rare opportunity to see how artists lent their visionary talent to prose and poetry. That talent, by the way, spans decades. Among the pieces viewed: David Hockney's etchings for tales from the Brothers Grimm; Rockwell Kent's dramatic lines for Moby Dick; Parsiphal interpreted by Henri Matisse; and Oscar Wilde's Dorian Gray as pictured by the brilliant Jim Dine. Thru 5/13. If your visit falls on 2/23, there's an additional treat. The Detroit Film Theatre will be screening Grown in Detroit at 7 p.m. Directed by Mascha and Manfred Poppenk, this remarkable and moving documentary recounts the gardening projects undertaken and managed by the Catherine Ferguson Academy, a public school attended by pregnant and parenting teenagers. The film details how the young women are taught basic agricultural skills – a curriculum that not only instructs them in how to work individually and collectively, but instills a feeling of self-worth and independence. Warmly recommended. More: dia.org.

Feel Free To Ask Anything You Like

An informal collective led by the Lithuanian-born American artist George Maciunas at the start of the 1960s, Fluxus was also a remarkable network of international talent, with such soon-to-be-famous names as Yoko Ono, George Brecht and Nam June Paik figuring prominently in the group's efforts. Although they differed in method and styles of approach, the artists shared a mutual desire to fashion works or performances that illustrated the belief that "anything is art and anyone can do it." That bold and unconventional philosophy resulted in quite a number of things that proved (and continue to prove) rather resistant to traditional museum display. Nevertheless, the University of Michigan Museum of Art has succeeded admirably in bringing much-needed clarity to the subject with a wonderful exhibit. Opens 2/25. More: umma.umich.edu.

The Most Theatrical Bungalow You Will Ever Visit

Praising Broadway Onstage for its "coziness" is (perhaps) a questionable compliment, but shared body heat is a plus in any theatre these days. So enjoy the warmth and the humor provided when Over the River and Through The Woods kicks into high gear starting 2/24. Joe DiPietro's comedy concerns one Nick Cristano, a gentleman in his thirties who decides to uproot himself from Hoboken and embrace the paradigm shift of Seattle. His grandparents, however, are unhappy with his decision and decide to play matchmaker in an attempt to keep him in Sinatraville. 21517 Kelly Rd. in Eastpointe. 586.771.6333.

| RDW

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