By Thomas Consolo
“Though April showers may come your way/They bring the flowers that bloom in May.” Well, let’s hope so. A few days of teasing sunshine have us ready for more, but the skies say otherwise. So what to do when precipitation requires indoor activities? Glad you asked. We have just the answer.
One last-chance item here this week:
“Aladdin”: Cincinnati Ballet’s Second Company takes the stage in this Family Series adaptation to music of Dvorak, Grieg, Nielsen, Rimsky-Korsakov and Sibelius of the Arabian Nights story. Four performances remain – Saturday and Sunday – at the Aronoff Center’s Procter & Gamble Hall (650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202).
Esquire Theatre | 320 Ludlow Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45220; 513-281-8750
Wednesday, April 3, through Sunday, April 7: “The General”
You may have noticed, thanks to its more regular appearances in these listings, that Clifton’s Esquire Theatre is slipping more classic films into its mix. That includes a nod to the earliest silver-screen geniuses in the Silent Clowns series. This week, it’s Buster Keaton in “The General,” the 1926 Civil War train comedy. Screenings tonight, Saturday and Sunday.
Cincinnati Art Museum | 953 Eden Park Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-721-2787 (ARTS)
Thursday, April 4, 7 p.m.: “Monsieur Chocolat”
As a complement to the “Paris 1900” exhibition, the art museum screens Roschdy Zem’s 2016 story about race and discrimination in turn-of-the-century French society. Monsieur Chocolat rises to become the first black performance star in French history with his partner Footit.
The Mini Microcinema | 1329 Main St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
Thursday, April 4, 7:30 p.m.: “A Beautiful Game”
Most of the way through the NCAA tournament and after Reds Opening Day, we know, as the description of “A Beautiful Game” reads, that sports is “a canvas for personal, regional and national projections…. [They] create moments that sear into the communal memory and replay over and over. “ (Doubt me? Ask a UK fan what he thinks of Christian Laettner … even after 27 years.) The Mini’s series of sports shorts features teams and sports from around the world, including the national soccer teams of Argentina, Brazil, England, France, Germany, Italy and Mexico; the Pittsburgh Pirates and Boston Celtics; Inuit high kick; U.S. Figure Skating; and the Mansfield Senior Tygers.
Voice of America Museum | 8070 Tylersville Road, West Chester, OH 45069; 513-777-0027
Wednesday, April 3, 7 p.m.: Museum and MidPointe – “History of the VOA Bethany Station”
Through the Cold War, then-sleepy West Chester Township was home to one of America’s most potent weapons – the truth. In the second of a four-part lecture series, John Dominic, executive director of the VOA museum, speaks tonight (sorry for the short notice) on the history of the VOA and Bethany Station; and on the extraordinary global impact of the programs it broadcast. At the MidPointe Library West Chester branch (9363 Centre Pointe Drive, West Chester Township, OH 45069; 513-777-3131).
Butler Philharmonic | 1 High St., Hamilton, OH 45011; 513-895-5151
Sunday, April 7, 3 p.m.: BPO Chorus
How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Ask the Butler Philharmonic Chorus. They’ve been twice, most recently last summer. You can hear some of the music they performed – including “Music for Mass” by Paul J. Stanbery, the orchestra’s longtime music director – at Sunday’s concert at Hamilton’s First United Methodist Church (225 Ludlow St., Hamilton, OH 45011).
Christ Church Cathedral | 318 East Fourth St.; Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-621-1817
Sunday, April 7, 5 p.m.: Choral Evensong
The Cathedral Choir performs the “Magnificat” and “Nunc dimittis” of Orlando Gibbons, the great church composer of England’s High Renaissance, and “Tu solus qui facis mirabilia” (You Alone Can Do Wonders) by Josquin des Prez, the greatest French late Renaissance composer. Evensong, which adopted elements of the monastic offices of vespers and compline, dates to the first Anglican Book of Common Prayer in 1549.
Cincinnati Zoo | 3400 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH 45220; 513-281-4700
Thursday, April 4, 6 p.m.: Tunes & Blooms
We mentioned last week in recommending Zoo Blooms that the concurrent weekly concert series would begin soon. Well, soon is this Thursday, and the lineup of guest artists includes Cecil Jackson & Dry Ridge Band and Shiny Old Soul. Besides being a bluegrass performer for more than three decades, Cecil also happens to be the zoo’s head elephant manager. Shiny Old Soul fuses styles like blues, roots and jazz.
Cincinnati Pops Orchestra | 1241 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-381-3300
Friday through Sunday, April 5 through 7: “The Wonderful Music of Oz”
There have been many adaptations, and in many forms, of L. Frank Baum’s tales about the land of Oz, its wizard and a young girl from Kansas who makes an unplanned visit. John Morris Russell and The Pops offer a smorgasbord of songs from them, particularly the 1939 movie “The Wizard of Oz” (and its stage cousin), the 1975 black-themed “The Wiz,” and the latest, the 2003 musical “Wicked,” based on the books by Gregory Maguire. Scott Coulter, Jessica Hendy and Blaine Krauss provide the vocals.
21c Museum Hotel | 609 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-578-6600
Sunday, April 7: “Out There”
The art-pop duo Princess is touring 21c hotels this spring with performances taken from their video album “Out There.” They make their stop in the Queen City this week. Princess, created in 2004, explores the concept of masculinity – simultaneously gay, straight, queer, masculine and feminine.
If you’re on the north side of city, Princess is fitting in a side trip Saturday to the Contemporary Dayton. That performance starts at 6:30 p.m.
Cincinnati Shakespeare Company | 1195 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-381-2273
Opens Friday, April 5: “Macbeth”
If one looks at my back yard, one may indeed believe Birnham Wood marches against me. I don’t have quite the reason to fear, though, that the usurper Macbeth and his wife have. The Shakespeare Company takes on the Scottish play at the Budig Theater through May 4. Screw your courage to the sticking place and go.
Northern Kentucky University | 1 Louie B. Nunn Drive, Highland Heights, KY 41099; 859-572-5464
Opens Wednesday, April 3: YES Festival
Every other year, NKU presents its Year-End Series, a group of world-premiere plays in repertory. This year’s festival comprises three new shows:
• In “Fast Young Beautiful” by Ethan Warren, young film actor Dennis is cast in two James Dean films in 1955, and the rebel makes Dennis his cause. They must understand what it means to be a great actor and a good man while they can. Through April 14 in the Corbett Theatre.
• Pen-and-paper role-playing games are Dave’s lifeline; he’s suffering from an aggressive cancer. Jacob York’s “Initiative” is a story about friends and the lengths we’ll go to for them. Through April 14 in the Stauss Theatre.
• Cincinnati playwright Isaiah Reaves set “The Black Boy in Pink” in his home town in 1959. Wyatt Frost, a young black man, has been forced to make hard choices to survive, but his flickering TV has shown him different possibilities. Will he be able to choose the life he has always wanted? “Lightly staged,” as NKU puts it, through April 14 in the Konstantinow Studio Theatre.
• “The Lion in Winter”: I can’t even say the title without doing a Katharine Hepburn impression, but James Goldman’s retelling of the fireworks between Eleanor of Aquitaine and England’s Henry II is, despite plenty of funny moments, not a laughing matter. Through Saturday at Falcon Theater (636 Monmouth St., Newport, KY 41071; 513-479-6783).
• “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas”: Everyone’s having a rollicking good time at the Chicken Ranch – until a crusader from Houston spoils the party. Through Sunday at the Warsaw Federal Incline Theater (801 Matson Place, Cincinnati, OH 45204; 513-241-6550).
Caza Sikes | 3078 Madison Road, Cincinnati, OH 45209; 513-818-9527
Opens Friday, April 5: Spring Exhibition – “On Nature”
This collaboration is a showcase of talented artists working with Visionaries + Voices, a local a nonprofit that provides exhibition opportunities, studio space, supplies and support to more than 125 visual artists with disabilities. Through April 28.
• Four concurrent exhibitions: The various spaces at Manifest (2727 Woodburn Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45206; 513-861-3638) are about to turn over again. Leaving Friday are this year’s Regional Showcase, “Fragments,” “Other Selves” and “One Shot.”
• Triple exhibition: The Carl Solway Gallery (424 Findlay St., Cincinnati, OH 45214; 513-621-0069) closes its showing of works by Judy Pfaff, Isaac Abrams and Kirk Mangus on Saturday.
• “Start Over Tomorrow While There’s Still Time”: A survey of the quirky trends of the world of illustration, particularly how illustrators turn to humor on paper to cope better with the world today. Through Saturday at the Wave Pool (2940 Colerain Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45225; 513-600-6117).
• “Incognitum” and “Proximity of Syllables”: The last two of three exhibitions that investigate the intersection of art and text; and image-based works. Through Sunday at the Aronoff Center’s Weston Art Gallery (650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-977-4165).