Trans Future (copy)

Trans Future, a Missoula band that plays "new-wave soul and roll," is playing at the Show Room in the Zootown Arts Community Center on Saturday, March 19. 

Here’s a quick guide to some arts and cultural events coming up in the week ahead.

Buddy DeFranco Jazz Festival

(Thursday-Friday, March 17-18)

The 42nd annual festival returns to the Dennison Theatre at the University of Montana on Thursday-Friday. Hear top student musicians from the visiting groups, from middle-school to college, the UM faculty combo, and the festival guest combo.

Both concerts start at 7:30 p.m. in the Dennison. Masks are recommended. After Friday’s concert, Stave & Hoop will host an after-hours jam session.

For tickets, go to

ZACC Mini Show opens

(Opens Friday, March 18)

The 10th anniversary Mini Benefit auction for the nonprofit Zootown Arts Community Center opens in its main gallery, with more than 80 artists. The styles range from classic Missoula weirdness to landscape, in sizes small and budget-bidder friendly to larger pieces for those who want to go big, physically and financially.

The opening reception is Friday, March 18, from 5-8 p.m. The bidding opens on March 18 at 5 p.m. for both the silent and live auction pieces. The show will stay on view through March 30.

The auction is Saturday, April 2, in the Commercial Building at the Missoula County Fairgrounds.

Go to for tickets or more information.

Brian Maguire: ‘In the Light of Conscience’

(Opens Friday, March 18)

Brain Maguire, an artist from Ireland, makes work that in the modern era is more associated with filmmakers and correspondents: Large-scale paintings that document the aftermath of war. He’s traveled to Juarez, Mexico and the large border zone and Syria and South Sudan. This MAM exhibition, his first in the United States, surveys the gamut of his work.

Maguire spends his summers in Hope, Idaho, and has been working with the MAM on an upcoming show on the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous women that will go on view in 2023.

The paintings aren’t cutting away any of the horrors of its subject matter. The MAM notes that the exhibition “contains images that may be upsetting to some viewers. Some paintings reference human rights abuses, graphic images of war and human remains,” and that the show is designed to “promote dialogue and understanding.”

The show is on view in the Carnegie Galleries through Aug. 13. Hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

MCT heads ‘Into the Woods’

(March 10-13, 18-20)

Missoula Community Theatre revisits the classic fairy-tale musical by the late Stephen Sondheim, in which a handful of Brothers Grimm fairy tales are filtered through his unique musical and lyrical sensibility.

As the federal and local guidelines have been relaxed, MCT has been able to bump up to a larger cast size and re-opened the orchestra pit for live musicians. David Cody of the University of Montana School of Music is acting as music director — he filled that role in a 2010 production of the show from UM that was produced at MCT.

Masks are optional indoors now. The show runs Friday-Sunday, March 18-20. For tickets, go to

Live music at Free Cycles

(Saturday, March 19)

The Spills, a self-identified “soul mountain punk jam grass folk” group and the the Skurfs, the city’s long-running “mountain surf” band, hit the community bike shop, so pedal on over.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The Spills start at 7 p.m. and The Skurfs go on at 8:30 p.m. All ages. Cover is $7 but “no one will be turned away for lack of funds,” as is the nonprofit’s policy.

Sasha Bell Band, Trans Future, Brute Finesse

(Saturday, March 19)

A triple bill of Missoula bands heads to the Show Room.

Indie-pop songwriter Sasha Bell came up through the Elephant 6 Collective in the late 1990s and early 2000s as part of the Essex Green before relocating to Missoula, where she’s started her own band and recorded a new album, “Love is Alright.”

Trans Future formed amidst the pandemic, led by vocalist Kateena Bell and guitarist Chris Knudson of the late gonzo-rock group Rooster Sauce, with Jason Word and Jesse Rockwood on bass and drums, respectively.

Also catch late ‘80s throwback hip-hop with Brute Finesse. Doors to the Show Room open at 7, show’s at 7:30 p.m. $10, all ages.