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BEST BETS: Thursday 1/17

8pm Theater

January 17, 2002

8pm Theater

In "Fiddler on the Roof," a humble milkman struggles to preserve his family traditions as 20th century pogroms loom. This new touring production of the landmark Joseph Stein-Jerry Bock-Sheldon Harnick musical is something of a tradition for star Theodore Bikel too: He has performed the role more than 1,600 times. Director Sammy Dallas Bayes has re-created Jerome Robbins' original Broadway choreography for the show.

"Fiddler on the Roof," Wilshire Theater, 8440 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, Tuesdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays-Sundays, 2 p.m. (Jan. 27, 2 p.m. only.) Ends Jan. 27. $47 to $67. (213) 365-3500, (714) 740-7878.

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7pm Poetry

It may be a home where the buffalo roam, figuratively speaking, but tonight the Autry Museum of Western Heritage is letting poets loose in its auditorium. To kick off a yearlong program of once-a-month free poetry nights, the Griffith Park institution has invited Los Angeles poets Jerry Quickley and Carmen Vega to serve as featured performers at Another West: Poets From Our Community. Quickley is thrice winner of the Los Angeles Poetry Grand Slam and twice a National Poetry slam finalist. Vega, whose work is in several anthologies, is laboring now on a book of love poems. Each featured poet has prowled the museum's collections in the company of a curator, looking for inspiration amid the Autry's thousands of artifacts from the actual and imagined American West. Sartorial warning: Persons in black may be mistaken for Zorro.

Another West: Poets From Our Community, the Autry Museum of Western Heritage, 4700 Western Heritage Way, L.A. 7-8:30 p.m. Free. (323) 667-2000, Ext. 397.

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8pm Jazz

Born two years before the death of his legendary father John Coltrane, Ravi Coltrane fearlessly elected to embark on a jazz career, playing the same instrument, saxophone. At first, the son was accused of cloning the father's style. But more recently, Ravi Coltrane has begun to emerge with his own sound. With pianist Joanne Brackeen, Coltrane performs two shows a night through Sunday at the Jazz Bakery.

Ravi Coltrane & Joanne Brackeen, the Jazz Bakery, 3233 Helms Ave., Culver City, Thursday-Sunday, 8 and 9:30 p.m. $22 to $25. (310) 271-9039.

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8:30pm Pop Music

Polyrhythmic, body-moving and expansive, Afrobeat became one of the most widespread sounds in the 1970s world-music movement, thanks to its charismatic messenger, the late Fela Kuti. The Nigerian icon's drummer and music director, Tony Allen, was a key player, and decades later he's teamed with young producer-musician Dr. L in Psyco on Da Bus, whose debut album throws gospel, Eastern music, electronica, jazz and other beats into the mix.

Psyco on Da Bus, with DJ Haul, Fischer P, Knitting Factory Hollywood, 7021 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 8:30 p.m. $20. (323) 463-0204.

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