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Shake a leg: the Fringe Festival returns downtown with a bevy of performances, including Titans Pantheistic Vaudeville (see theater).
photo: Ralf Strathmann

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'ELECTRIFY ME' This cool, handsome show of plugged-in art is suffused with light and color. Mixing oldies and goodies, it includes a 1970 corner abyss by James Terrell, a perfectly simple Dan Flavin, and Bruce Nauman's Raw/War, along with Jorge Pardo's floor lamps, Tobias Rehberger's shelving units (indirectly lit by flickering TVs), and Tim Noble & Sue Webster's brand-new, faux Nauman-esque neon piece titled Fucking Beautiful. Rachel Whiteread's small light-switch panel is the only thing that doesn't glow. It's a nice touch. THROUGH FRIDAY, Friedrich Petzel Gallery, 535 West 22nd Street, 680-9467. (Levin)

JOSEPH GRIGELY This para-conceptualist's largest installation yet lines an oval room with 2500 scrawled scraps of paper, the "leftover linguistic matter of his daily life." As eloquent as a Ryman monochrome, White Noise is the latest addition to this deaf artist's ongoing series, "Conversations With the Hearing." Polite, crass, confessional, bantering, or simply banal, these fragmentary snippets of talk—about food, drink, music, blue-light specials, and root canals—are a fascinating visualization of conversational speech. Grigely himself, who's also a professor of literary theory, is the missing link: His replies were spoken. THROUGH SEPTEMBER 9, Whitney Museum of American Art, 945 Madison Avenue, at 75th Street, 570-3676. (Levin)


'A BALKAN BRASS BAND MEETS A HORSE OF A DIFFERENT COLOR' Michael Ginsburg's 12-piece band plays, eight expert male Balkan folk dancers raise their (and our) heart rates to dangerous levels, and twenty other performers from ballet, modern, and a range of diverse cultural traditions improvise and share intimate tales of their relationship with their craft, in this latest incarnation of Tina Croll and Jamie Cunningham's ingenious structure for demystifying dance. Watch and listen to Diana Byer, Rajika Puri, Arthur Aviles, La Conja, Chris Elam, Lois Welk, Ellis Wood, and many more. Come early to get a good spot at this free event. THURSDAY AT 6:45 (RAINDATE: FRIDAY), South Plaza at Damrosch Park, Lincoln Center, 63rd Street between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues, 875-5108. (Zimmer)

MARK MORRIS DANCE GROUP They never go anywhere without live music, and these two free events are no exception. They'll launch the big-deal dance at Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors, WEDNESDAY AT 8, at the Damrosch Park Bandshell, Lincoln Center, 63rd Street between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues, 875-5108. Fresh from a triumphant season indoors at BAM, and newly resident in the borough of Brooklyn, the company performs Dancing Honeymoon, Grand Duo, and other repertory favorites under the stars. FRIDAY AT 8, Prospect Park Bandshell, 9th Street and Prospect Park West, Brooklyn, 718-855-7882 ext. 45. (Zimmer)

NOCHE FLAMENCA Rapidly becoming a summer tradition downtown, Martin Santangelo and Soledad Barrio's terrific ensemble sets up shop in the intimate precincts of Joe's Pub, where their flamenco chops can be enveloped in precisely the vibe that nurtures the form in its native land. THURSDAY AT 8:30, FRIDAY AND SATURDAY AT 7 AND 9:30, SUNDAY AT 7, THROUGH AUGUST 26, Joe's Pub, 425 Lafayette Street, 239-6200. (Zimmer)


'LOVE AND PERDITION: THE PAST AND PRESENT IN PORTUGUESE CINEMA' That Portugal has been home to a fragile but marvelously inventive film community may come as a surprise to non-travelers of the festival circuit. Spanning 70 years, this month-long retrospective includes such world-class directors as Manoel de Oliveira, João César Monteiro, and Pedro Costa. This Friday, 93-year-old De Oliveira will be on hand to present the fervently literary Word and Utopia (2000), based on the sermons of a 17th century Jesuit priest. THROUGH AUGUST 31, BAM Rose Cinemas, 30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-636-4100. (Taubin)

'HARLEM WEEK BLACK FILM FESTIVAL' Now an annual event, this smartly curated series has a broad-based definition of black film and mixes archival treasures, popular hits, and the occasional oddity. In the last category is low-budget director Arthur Barron's Brothers (1977), based on the letters of Angela Davis and George Jackson. Dated but still hard to handle are Dutchman (1967), the film adaptation of Amiri Baraka's play, starring Al Freeman Jr. and Shirley Knight, and Ivan Dixon's The Spook Who Sat by the Door (1973), about a black CIA agent turned revolutionary. THROUGH AUGUST 18, Art Gallery, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. State Office Building, 163 West 125th Street, 749-5298, (Taubin)

'NYPD' The New York cop remains an internationally familiar, and incomparably tough, movie archetype, and in a not-always-flattering salute Film Forum assembles American visions of Gotham flatfootery, from 1914's archival prize The Line-Up at Police Headquarters to Abel Ferrara's 1992 passion Bad Lieutenant. The semi-rare noirs pile up (beauts include 1958's Cop Hater and Robert Parrish's 1951 nose-breaker The Mob), but the Depression-era hard-boilers, like Raoul Walsh's Me and My Gal (1932), are unmissable. Many of these cannot be had on video. FRIDAY, THROUGH OCTOBER 4, EXCEPT MONDAYS, Film Forum, 209 West Houston Street, 727-8110. (Atkinson)


DESTINY'S CHILD+NELLY+EVE+DREAM+3LW One of these strange-pop-bedfellow groups is not like the others. Dream is the white one; the others are not. Nelly is the male one; the others are not; 3LW is the anonymous one (though they shouldn't be); the others are not. Eve is the mature one; the others are not. Destiny's Child are the jargon-creating, non-Internet-dissing, member-rotating, God-fearing, cred-losing, harmony-seeking one; the others only wish they were. WEDNESDAY AT 6:30, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, New Jersey, 307-7171; SATURDAY AT 7, Jones Beach Theater, 1000 Ocean Parkway, Long Island, 307-7171. (Caramanica)

'BIG DAY OFF FEST' Except for Marilyn Manson, every one of these mostly white men mean what they say and are often saying something meaningful, if not always listenable. Linkin Park and Mudvayne will bring real tunes and sleek pummel-bounce, respectively, circumscribing the mostly hip-hop-metal mishmash moshfest festerfuck that is the rest of this g-g-g-generation-defining scream-teenpop extravaganza. Disturbed and Papa Roach owe much to Limp Bizkit; Slipknot are like a humorless Mr. Bungle. But who's heard of Mr. Bungle? THURSDAY AT 5, Jones Beach Theater, 1000 Ocean Parkway, Long Island, 307-7171. (Catucci)

MAXWELL Maxwell is an artist who manages to make an impact without really making an impact at all. One of r&b's mellowest crooners, he's achieved fame wildly out of step with his minor pop hits, largely for being handsome as fuck and providing lots and lots of men with the one album in their collections that they can play when women come over. Maxwell's new album is coming soon, but with anticipation being low, the man has scored a cross-marketing coup for his one-city mini-tour. Go often. Go early. MONDAY AT 9, Irving Plaza, 17 Irving Place, 777-6800; TUESDAY AT 8, Apollo Theater, 253 West 125th Street, 749-5838. (Caramanica)

'OZZFEST 2001' A bit farther away than the Jones Beach metalfest two days earlier, but this one sees more daylight, and if you're gonna throw some dumb sunshine-and-metal-don't-mix cliché at me, you should also tell me how that applies to the ridiculously tatted-and-pierced Crazy Town, whose two sublime summery singles are just about rock radio's only worthwhile hits this year, and who aren't at Jones despite right now being the best act on either bill. Sabbath is also only in N.J. Slipknot, Linkin Park, Papa Roach, Disturbed, and M. Manson are at both. Also: Black Label Society, Mudvayne, Union Underground, Taproot, Systematic, and more. SATURDAY AND SUNDAY AT 11 A.M., PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, New Jersey, 307-7171. (Eddy)

JILL SCOTT Jill Scott is utter sunshine, a woman of considerable vocal gifts and an even more charming stage presence. The songs from her debut album glide easily from her mouth onstage, and whether in front of a tiny club crowd or a packed theater audience, she makes the material intimate. Word is her recent work with progressive Brit dancefloor headfuckers 4Hero is devastating. Let's just hope there's no Moby collabo in the works. With Mike Phillips. SATURDAY AND SUNDAY AT 8, New Jersey Performing Arts Center, One Center Street, Newark, New Jersey, 645-5156. (Caramanica)

'2001 VERIZON MUSIC FESTIVAL' Should anyone ask you how you can bear to live in New York City, tell them that on Saturday, up at Columbia, from 4 to 9, you are going to hear Abbey Lincoln, Wayne Shorter, James Carter, and the (Latin) Big 3 Palladium Orchestra for free, and rub it in by pointing out that Shorter is leading the magnificent quartet—Danilo Perez, John Patitucci, Brian Blade—which he wrapped, JVC as in a downy quilt; Carter has his sublimely rigorous Django band; and Abbey is Abbey is Abbey. Just pray there's no rain or speechmaking. You can also catch the jubilant, surprisingly funny Archie Shepp/Roswell Rudd Quintet, with Reggie Workman, Andrew Cyrille, Grachan Moncur, and Amiri Baraka on Wednesday at the Schimmel Center, and either Sun Ra's ghost, Nels Cline, and Gregg Bendian revisiting Trane, and DJ Spooky at the Schimmel Center, or Ray Charles and Natalie Cole at City Center, on Thursday. WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY AT 8, Pace University, Schimmel Center, 3 Spruce Street, 346-1715; THURSDAY AT 8, City Center, 131 West 55th Street, 581-1212; SATURDAY AT 4 P.M., Columbia University, Quadrangle, Broadway and 116th Street, (Giddins)

SADE You could call it a comeback. But given the umpteen millions of albums she's sold worldwide and the ubiquity of her oeuvre, where could she possibly be said to have gone? Hard to believe that on any given minute of any given day she can't be heard piping through somebody's café, car stereo, boudoir, Jacuzzi, or adult contemporary airwaves. On the other hand, it's not like she plays MSG every other leap year either. She'll be up there cooling, making post-romantic melancholia and the Middle Passage sound like the breath of seduction. You and your issues will be up in the nose-bleed section taking a chill pill. India Arie opens on FRIDAY AT 7:30, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, New Jersey, 307-7171; MONDAY AT 7:30, Madison Square Garden, 2 Penn Plaza, 307-7171. (Tate)

DARYL SHERMAN If you're in the mood to splurge, here's a reason. Infallibly backed by guitarist Gene Bertoncini and bassist-singer Jay Leonhart, this singer, pianist, and collector of worthy but neglected songs has put together a thoroughly enchanting program, the best hour of cabaret jazz in town. No one has done more than Sherman to keep the disarmingly light, ardently swinging sound of Mildred Bailey alive, and she lets you know her pedigree right off with the obscure "Born to Swing," closing with a riotous three-way Bing Crosby medley that crams about 25 songs into four or five minutes. If you've never given serious thought to the meaning of Mary Lou Williams's "In the Land of Oo-Bla-Dee," she will force you to do so. WEDNESDAY AND SATURDAY AT 9, AND FRIDAY AND SATURDAY ALSO AT 11:30, Algonquin Hotel, Oak Room, 59 West 44th Street, 840-6800. (Giddins)


'MORE THAN ONE' If the premise of this show—various approaches to group portraiture and crowd shots—is disarmingly simple, its execution is just twisted enough to keep viewers off-guard. In a room dominated by Richard Avedon's 20-foot-long picture of Allen Ginsberg at a 1970 family gathering, issues of scale are bound to come up, but the only other large photo here, Clegg & Guttmann's mock-formal portrait of The Art Consultants, can't stand up to its little neighbor, Weegee's famous shot of the July 21, 1940 throng at Coney Island, much less a group of 18 superb August Sanders. The Avedon holds its own (and earns its massive scale) because, like the Sanders, it's a true portrait—as psychologically acute as it is pictorially dense—and it plays nicely against more formally posed group shots by James Van Der Zee and Neal Slavin and the almost surreal regimentation of the tiny humans organized into Woodrow Wilson's profile and other symbolic shapes for four aerial photos here. THROUGH AUGUST 23, AND FROM SEPTEMBER 4 THROUGH 15, Andrea Rosen Gallery, 525 West 24th Street, 627-6000. (Aletti)

HIROSHI SUGIMOTO Although the impact of this show of Sugimoto's larger-than-life wax museum Portraits has been blunted by Sonnabend's exhibition of some of the same photos only a few months back, that shouldn't stop you from seeing the full range of this extraordinary series. Sugimoto has never let the shrewd conceptual grounding of his work interfere with its pictorial and emotional punch, so issues of artifice and reality or the play of influences between painting and photography invigorate rather than stifle these images. And their enormous scale (though considerably diminished in the Guggenheim's vast, dead space) is crucial. The illusion of physical, human presence conveyed by many of the photos is compounded by the work's own imposing presence. You're more likely to be stopped cold in front of the contemporary figures (including Fidel Castro, Princess Diana, and Yasir Arafat) than Queen Victoria, Voltaire, Oscar Wilde, or Henry VIII and his six wives, but they all seem suspended somewhere between life and death—a continuum we'll all have a place on. THROUGH NOVEMBER 10, Guggenheim Museum Soho, 575 Broadway, at Prince Street, 423-3500. (Aletti)


'NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL FRINGE FESTIVAL' Having trouble deciding which show to see? Wait till next week and watch your troubles multiply: This year's fifth anniversary edition of the Present Company's annual summoning of edgy troupes from all over is longer and bulkier than ever. There'll be solo performances, deconstructed classics, group creations, pop-culture parodies, found-text documentaries, and even one or two plays, at venues all over lower Manhattan, representing 17 foreign countries and 16 U.S. cities. Dotcom culture and serial killers are among this year's heavy topics, vaudeville and musical theater its pet genres. Among many highlights, keep an eye out for a new Faust piece by Chicago's Theater Oobleck, perpetrators of last year's Lost Works of Samuel Beckett; for Doing Justice, a docudrama based on eyewitness accounts of the Columbine High shootings; and for members of the Mayor's Decency Commission, who've probably reserved front-row seats for Sloe-Eyed Productions' stage version of—are we ready?—Debbie Does Dallas, featuring "a cast of 16 classically trained actors." Classically trained in what, exactly? Get all the details at OPENS FRIDAY, THROUGH AUGUST 26, various venues and times, 420-8877. (Feingold).

'THE 2001 BLUEPRINT SERIES' It's the ninth anniversary of the Ontological Theatre's annual summer lab for young directors. Chris Ajemian's Negative Space tracks the battle between acquisitive humans and the objects that take over their lives; Michael Comlish builds Nothing from motifs in Richard Foreman's Web-available notebooks; Kelly Cooper relandscapes Gertrude Stein's Mexico; and Alice Reagan sculpts physical performance from silent-film stills in Pickford. There's no guarantee of quality in any of the results, but the chance of watching a fresh artistic intelligence at work runs very high. OPENS WEDNESDAY THROUGH AUGUST 19, Ontological at St. Mark's Church, 131 East 10th Street, 533-4650. (Feingold)


HARLEM POETRY Readings dwindle this time of year, but summer slams gather speed. Every Tuesday unleashes the Poetic Vibes competition, turning the stage over to 30 poets, who have three minutes each to nab a meaty $500 and the title of champion. TUESDAYS AT 8, Jimmy's Uptown, 2207 Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard, between 130th and 131st streets, 410-9387. On the second Sunday of the month, for no prize money—but with the advantage of no admission fee and the big skyscraper-lit sky above—Hope Community sponsors garden readings by local poets followed by open-mic sessions. SUNDAY FROM 2 TO 5, Modesto Flores Garden, Lexington Avenue, between 104th and 105th streets, 860-8821 ext. 129. (Todaro)

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