What to do, hear, see | March 22-28

By Thom Mariner

Now that our Madness has been cut in half (Thanks, Bearcats! Go, Muskies!), it’s time to turn to thoughts of spring. Opening Day is just around the corner. Get out and get busy…it’s going to be warmer!


Krohn Conservatory | Eden Park. 513-421-4086

  • Saturday, March 25-June 18. “The Majestic Monarch Butterfly Show”

Majestic Monarchs at Krohn Conservatory

Are you feeling the need to commune with gentleness? Then head thee to Krohn and bask in butterfly bliss. Unless having these docile creatures alight on your shoulders creeps you out, of course… Learn about butterfly habitat and how to attract them to your own patch of green.

“Mandela – The Journey to Ubuntu” at the Freedom Center

“Mandela – The Journey to Ubuntu” at the Freedom Center

National Underground Railroad Freedom Center | 50 E. Freedom Way, The Banks. 513-333-7500

  • Friday, March 24, 5 p.m. “Nelson Mandela: The Journey to Ubuntu”

A much-anticipated life appreciation at the Freedom Center of this much-loved and respected figure within the global civil rights movement. Told through photographs by Matthew Willman. Opening night celebration begins at 5 p.m., and includes a world premiere dance performance as part of the Constella Festival. See Music, below. Exhibit runs through Aug. 20.


Cincinnati Film Society | The Mockbee, 2260 Central Pkwy, Mohawk.

  • Friday-Saturday, March 24-25. “RiverReel: LIght. Sound. + Music. Motion.” All-genre film festival: features, documentaries, shorts, music videos – local, national, and international. A variety of passes are available, ranging from $10-$65.

And speaking of music in movies…try this as a prelude to RiverReel, the night before…

The Mini Microcinema | 1329 Main St., Over-the-Rhine.

  • Thursday, March 23, 7 p.m. “Music Fills the Days Of Our Lives / Short Films & Mad Music”


Mercantile Library | 414 Walnut St., downtown. 513-621-0717

  • Thursday, March 23, 7 p.m. “Modern Novel Lecture,” with Nathan Hill, author of “The Nix.” Reception: 6:30 p.m.
Nathan Hill, author of “The Nix” at the Mercantile Library Photo by Michael Lionstar

Nathan Hill, author of “The Nix” at the Mercantile Library
Photo by Michael Lionstar

The new Mercantile, thanks to John Faherty and Amy Hunter, continues to put on intriguing programs. This is one of the most talked-about novels of 2016, incredibly popular, but not without skeptics. But isn’t that always true of great fiction…that we end up discussing it? Pro or con, here’s your chance to learn more.


Catacoustic Consort | Werner Recital Hall, College-Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati.

  • Saturday, March 25, 8 p.m. Catacoustic Orchestra

Catacoustic Consort

Up to now, Catacoustic concerts have been truly intimate affairs, infused only by feathery plucking or the whispering of bows by a few players, and occasionally a singer or two. For this concert, Annalisa Pappano debuts her “big band” in works for viol and orchestra – music by J.S. Bach and his friend, the even more prolific Georg Phillip Telemann. And Werner Recital Hall, with all that glorious wood, should be a real treat for the listener.

Church of the Redeemer | 3944 Erie Ave., Hyde Park. 513-321-6700

  • Sunday, March 26, 2 p.m. Petr Eben, “Job.” Ted Gibboney, organ. Rabbi Matthew Kraus, narrator.

Broad in color and dramatic in scale, the eight movements of this cycle by the late Czech composer Eben (1929-2007) tell the biblical tale of Job’s struggle, perseverance, and triumph in the midst of human suffering. Rabbi Kraus is on the faculty of the University of Cincinnati in Judaic Studies, and an expert in the tale of Job, which he renders in Hebrew and English each year for Rockdale Temple’s High Holy Days services.

Cincinnati Contemporary Jazz Orchestra | The Redmoor, Mt. Lookout Square. 513-280-8181

  • Thursday, March 23, 7:30 p.m. “CCJO Meets Prince,” featuring Angie Ortega

And now for something completely different… Last year it was Radiohead. This year, a tribute to the late composer of “Little Red Corvette” and “When Doves Cry.” Can’t imagine what big band brass and winds might sound like doing Prince? Well, here’s your chance to take a fresh listen to the legend formerly known as…

CSO Spectrum hosts Well-Strung at the 20th Century Theater.

CSO Spectrum hosts Well-Strung at the 20th Century Theater.

Cincinnati Symphony Spectrum Series | 20th Century Theater, Oakley.

  • Saturday, March 25, Well-Strung, the singing string quartet

Classical-pop instrumental fusion with a twist – these guys sing too! And they’re kinda hot. Boy band meets string quartet. From Beethoven to Madonna and Ravel to Kesha. Should be fun, and proceeds help support CSO LGBT-friendly programming.

Constella Festival |

  • Thursday, March 23, 8 p.m. “From Russia with Love,” Tatiana Berman, violin in collaboration with filmmaker David Donnelly. (at Gallery 708, 708 Walnut St., downtown).
  • Friday, March 24, 8 p.m. “Luminous Dance,” world premiere dance works by Dayton Contemporary Dance Company and Mam-Luft&Co Dance. Part of opening reception for “Mandela: The Journey to Ubuntu.” (at Harriet Tubman Theater, Freedom Center, The Banks) See Cultural Exhibits above.
  • Saturday, March 25, 8 p.m. Constella Finale with Ricardo Scofano, bandoneon; Alfredo Minetti, piano; Tatiana Berman, violin; Jeff Greene, bass. (at Gallery 708, downtown)

The Constella Festival wraps up this weekend with three varied programs incorporating film, dance, visual art, plus a chance to tango and let your own hair down after the finale.

Read more from founder Tatiana Berman here.

Linton Chamber Music | 513-381-6868

  • Sunday, March 26, 4 p.m. “Strings in Spring,” Jaime Laredo, violin; Jinjoo Cho, violin; Hsin-Yun Huang, viola; Eric Wong, viola and Sharon Robinson, cello. (at First Unitarian Church, 536 Linton St., Mt. Auburn).
  • Monday, March 27, 7:30 p.m. Encore of previous. (at Congregation Beth Adam, 10001 Loveland-Madeira Road, Loveland).

Legendary Linton directors Laredo and Robinson return to join three fabulous young string players in quintets by Brahms and Dvorak, plus a violin duo by Prokofiev. Hearing chamber music at First Unitarian is always so rewarding, but get there early for a good seat.

Xavier Music Series | Gallagher Center Theater. 513-745-3161

  • Sunday, March 26, 3 p.m. Bill Charlap, jazz piano

You might be most familiar with Bill Charlap from his 2015 recording with Tony Bennett. Twice Grammy-nominated for his own projects, he has accompanied the best, from Phil Woods to Barbra Streisand. And he continues to be one of the most respected and sought-after pianists in New York City.


Northern Kentucky University | Stauss Theatre. 859-572-5901

  • Friday-Sunday, March 24-26. “The Tender Land”

A rare opportunity to hear Copland’s beautiful, yet seldom-sung score…and just 10 minutes from downtown!


The Carnegie | 1028 Scott Blvd., Covington. 859-491-2030

  • Saturday, March 25-April 9. “Disenchanted”

This “not-for-kiddies cabaret” began as a Fringe Festival show in Orlando before moving to off-Broadway. This uproarious comedy musical is a send-up of fairy tale princesses from Cinderella to Sleeping Beauty, throwing aside their lofty personas and “getting real” in the process.

Cincinnati Shakespeare Company | 719 Race St., downtown. 513-381-2273

  • Wednesday, March 22-April 15. “A Raisin in the Sun,” by Lorraine Hansberry

The cast of “Raisin the in the Sun” at Cincy Shakes Photo by Mikki Schaffner

Cincy Shakes spreads its wings in welcome fashion to present this iconic 1959 play about money and family complications in search of the American Dream.  

Memorial Hall | 1225 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-977-8838

  • Thursday, March 23-April 2. “Tony N’ Tina’s Wedding”
Libby Winters in rehearsal for “All the Roads Home” at Playhouse in the Park

Libby Winters in rehearsal for “All the Roads Home” at Playhouse in the Park

Fun, fun and more fun in this crazy, audience-participation wedding-within-a-play. Perfect programming for promoting Memorial Hall as a wedding destination, don’t cha think? If you’re in the market, a great way to try out the space. If not, and you love weddings, just go have a blast!

Playhouse in the Park | Thompson Shelterhouse, Mt. Adams. 513-421-3888

  • Saturday, March 25-April 23. “All the Roads Home,” by Jen Silverman

The attraction and personal price of wanderlust play out across three generations of women in this world premiere play about love, loss and legacy.


Cincinnati Clay Alliance | Baum Pottery, 5005 State Route 350, Lebanon

  • Saturday-Sunday, March 25-26. “2017 Baum Pottery Kiln Opening”

Open from 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday, this spring happening features demonstrations by guest potters Joe Frank McKee and Tony & Mindy Winchester. Enjoy music provided by Full Moon Ranch. There are raffles for pottery and “plenty” of refreshments, so they say!

Greenwich House Gallery | 2124 Madison Rd., O’Bryonville. 513-871-8787

  • Friday, March 24, 6-8:30 p.m. “Sweet Home, Cincinnati.”

We sometimes forget what a uniquely beautiful city we have. What better way to renew our appreciation than through the eyes of artists, who see beyond the obvious and focus our attention on what should be noticed. Runs through April 15.

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