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Release: Immediate


HANCHER BOX OFFICE CLOSES MARCH 14-22 UI FOR UI SPRING BREAK -- The Hancher Auditorium box office at the University of Iowa will be closed March 14-22 for UI spring break.

The box office will resume its regular business hours Monday, March 23:

10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and 1-3 p.m. Sunday. From the local calling area or outside Iowa, dial (319) 335-1160. Long distance within Iowa and western Illinois is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284.

People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should dial (319) 335-1158. This number will be answered by box office personnel prepared to offer assistance with handicapped parking, wheelchair access and seating, hearing augmentation and other services. The line is equipped with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.

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GEORGE WALKER OFFERS GALLERY TOUR MARCH 25 -- Painter George Walker, an emeritus professor who recently retired from the University of Iowa School of Art and Art History, will present a gallery tour at 12:30 p.m., Wednesday, March 25 at the UI Museum of Art. Walker will lead viewers through the museum's current retrospective exhibition of his works, which will be on view in the Carver Gallery from March 14 to May 3.

Walker's gallery tour, which is free and open to the public, is part of the museum's weekly Perspectives series.

Walker served as a UI faculty member for 31 years while maintaining an active and successful career as an artist. Although he considers himself primarily a painter, he has produced works in a variety of forms. In addition to paintings, several drawings, collages and artistic constructions are included in the 30 works in the exhibition.

Many of the works on view depict Walker's career-long concern with the relationships between colors on the canvas. Using a unique transparent acrylic paint, Walker overlaps colors to produce a variety of hues in his paintings. In the "Mediterranean Series," a recent series of drawings, Walker uses color in a fantastical representation of Mediterranean cultures.

Walker said, "Everything I've done, it seems to me, has had the same general concerns, such as an overriding focus on the positioning of color on the canvas, the overall configuration of the images, and the relationship between colors."

Throughout his career, Walker has participated in international exhibitions and more than 80 one-person or group shows throughout the United States. His work is included in numerous public and private collections throughout the world. After his retirement he found a studio near Iowa City and plans to remain in the area.

M.C. Ginsberg Objects of Art, Inc. of Iowa City is the corporate sponsor for the 1997-98 Perspectives series at the UI Museum of Art through the University of Iowa Foundation.

The UI Museum of Art, located on North Riverside Drive in Iowa City, is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. Public metered parking is available in UI parking lots across from the museum on Riverside Drive, and adjacent to the UI Alumni Center, which is just north of the museum.

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ADAPTATION OF IBSEN'S 'DOLL HOUSE,' MARCH 26-28 -- The University Theatres Gallery series will present Edris Cooper's new adaptation of Hendrik Ibsen's "A Doll House" at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, March 26-28, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 29 in Theatre B of the University of Iowa Theatre Building. The audience at the March 27 performance will be invited to remain for a discussion.

Ibsen's frequently-produced classic is a subject of on-going scholarly and critical interest, and a new adaptation by Irish playwright Frank McGuiness recently closed on Broadway after a successful run. The scholarly interest is so detailed that even the play's title has come under scrutiny -- the English translation "A Doll's House" has now been supplanted by "A Doll House," more accurately reflecting the play's themes and characterizations.

One of the questions addressed in the adaptation of "A Doll House" is the possibility of women finding freedom in the institution of marriage.

Cooper has adapted the script in light of contemporary American concepts of love and marriage: "I have tried to discover in this adaptation things we have inherited as a result of feminist culture, whose movement has resonated on-stage in productions of this play. I have especially tried to look for those things that speak to the other side of that, because I believe that a really good play doesn't answer questions for us, but poses them, so that not only one side can be represented in the text."

A veteran of the San Francisco Mime Troupe, Cooper is a Patricia Roberts Harris Fellow in the UI department of theatre arts. She directed Robert Alexander's "A Preface to the Alien Garden" for University Theatres mainstage last season, and Lee Simon's "The Bow Wow Club" last spring for the Iowa Playwrights Festival.

Other artistic contributors to the production of "A Doll House" include set designer Alan Morti, lighting designer Kelly Perkins, costume designer Tony Zika and sound designer Sean Williams.

Admission to "A Doll House" will be $4 ($2 for UI students, senior citizens and youth 17 and younger) at the door.

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POET BEDIENT READS MARCH 28 -- Poet Cal Bedient will read from his most recent work at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 28 in Room 101 of the Becker Communications Studies Building at the University of Iowa. The reading, sponsored by the Iowa Writers' Workshop and Prairie Lights Books, is free and open to the public.

Bedient is a professor of English at UCLA and is the author of several books of literary criticism, as well as his recently published collection of poetry "Candy Necklace," which has been widely praised.

In "Candy Necklace" Bedient explores a wide range of familiar emotional landscapes, including the constellation of the family, love and profound loss, and his work is always deeply intimate and verbally original. The brutality of both public and private experience finds reckoning in these intricate new poems.

Former UI faculty member and U.S. poet laureate Robert Hass wrote in the Boston Review that "Candy Necklace" is "alive in every direction . . . an altogether unexpected and brilliant poetic debut." Donald Revell describes the collection as "poems with an edge that makes them truly vivid and literally astonishing."