By Thomas Consolo
The month may change, but 2019 is still stuck in the same disheartening rut: more rain. That’s very bad news for the many events that expect the season and the outdoors to coincide. Never fear, though. Until nature comes around, we’ve got plenty of things to keep you busy – indoors – for the next week.
Contemporary Dance Theater | Aronoff Center, 650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-591-1222
Friday and Saturday, June 7 and 8, 8 p.m.: Area Choreographers Festival
Six local choreographers bring new works to the stage of the Jarson-Kaplan Theater in CDT’s season closer. Inspiration for the pieces is varied, ranging from the poetry of the late Pulitzer Prize winner Mary Oliver to the power of brands in pop culture to the tragic story of Margaret Garner, a runaway slave who, upon imminent recapture, kills her daughter rather than see her returned to slavery. The accompanying music is similarly varied, ranging from Schubert to new commissions.
Cincinnati Fringe Festival | 1120 Jackson St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
Through June 15
The kinda weird rolls on. The varied offerings of the Fringe Festival continue, covering nearly every imaginable subject, genre and location. Besides the Primary Lineup (34 curated productions), there’s Fringe Next (productions by high school artists), Visual Fringe, Film Fringe, Family Friendly Fringe (good to know because many Fringe events include quite adult material) and even the Fringe Bar Series – following the main events. Take advantage of the festival’s pretty darn thorough lineup page to find something that sounds interesting to you. Trust us, there’s something for every taste.
Ohio River Foundation | 10245 Winton Road, Cincinnati, OH 45231; 513-460-3365
Saturday, June 8, 7 p.m.: Wild & Scenic Film Festival
If you’re thinking the weather is just too nice to be stuck indoors watching movies, first let me remind you about the year’s dismal amount of rainfall. Second, how about movies about the outdoors? The Ohio River Foundation, whose mission is to protect and improve the water quality of the entire Ohio River watershed, offers up a dozen short films (shortest is just 2 minutes) on both regional and global themes. Representatives of some sponsor organizations will be on hand, and there’s even a 5 p.m. prescreening hike at Winton Woods.
Cincinnati Museum Center | 1301 Western Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45203; 513-287-7000
Opens Friday, June 7: “Cuba – Journey to the Heart of the Caribbean”
The newest film at the Museum Center’s Omnimax Theater surrounds you with the world of America’s island neighbor, from its vibrant culture and meticulously maintained colonial architecture to its pristine ecosystems. You’ll see iridescent ocean reefs and Havana streets throbbing with music and dance, most through the eyes of Cuban artists, historians and scientists.
Harriet Beecher Stowe House | 2950 Gilbert Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45206; 513-751-0651
Sunday, June 9, 1-4 p.m.: Harriet’s Birthday Party
Stop by the Harriet Beecher Stowe house for some birthday cake, live music from Ma Crow, docent-led tours of the house and even a Harriet interpreter. It’s all in honor of the abolitionist author’s 208th birthday. (Yes, her birthday is technically June 14, but who’s arguing? There’s cake.)
National Underground Railroad Freedom Center | 50 East Freedom Way, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202; 513-333-7500
Thursday, June 6, 6:55 p.m.: An Evening with Loki Mulholland and Joan Trumpauer Mulholland
Sunday, June 9, 3 p.m.: “An Ordinary Hero”
Joan Trumpauer Mulholland is a veteran of many of the landmark civil rights demonstrations of the 1960s. That includes the Freedom Rides, the march from Selma to Montgomery and the March on Washington. After a 40-year teaching career, she founded a namesake foundation dedicated to teaching young people about the civil right movement and how to be activists in their time. Mulholland, now 77, will be at the Freedom Center on Thursday with her son, Loki, to discuss her life and Loki’s film about her, “An Ordinary Hero.” A reception precedes the discussion at 6 p.m. Come back on Sunday for a screening of the film. Both events are part of Freedom 55, marking 55 years since Freedom Summer.
It’s the Queen City’s summer music season, and that means outdoors. For a breakdown on the biggest series running across the region, read M&M’s summer music guide. For those who like their music a little more climate controlled, how about one of these?
Art of the Piano | 290 CCM Blvd., Cincinnati, OH 45221; 513-556-6638
Through June 16
Awadagin Pratt’s “intimate” festival to raise the level of artistry for young pianists is now into its third week – with another week yet to go. Up this week in CCM’s Werner Recital Hall are performances by Jura Margulis and Maria Murawska.
Margulis was born in Russia, grew up in Germany, then moved to the U.S. to study with Leon Fleisher (who performed at Art of the Piano last week). At 8 pm. Friday, he’ll perform Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition” (if all you’ve ever heard is an orchestration, go hear the original), plus music by Schubert, Schumann and Tchaikovsky.
Murawska was born in Bydgoszcz, Poland, whose unfortunate west-central location in the country led it to call several nations master over the centuries. Murawska has made a specialty of native music, particularly of Chopin, Paderewski and Szymanowski. At 7 p.m. Saturday, she presents an all-Chopin program.
For more details about the festival, I refer you once again to M&M’s preview of Art of the Piano by Thom Mariner.
Cincinnati Men’s Chorus | 3250 Victory Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45207; 513-542-2626
Saturday and Sunday, June 8 and 9: Pride concert
If you genuinely do not know why June is Pride month for the LGBTQ community, here’s your chance to learn – with music. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York City, an enough-is-enough response to police oppression of the gay community in the city. To help mark the occasion, Cincinnati Men’s Chorus will perform “Quiet No More,” a piece commissioned by several gay and lesbian choruses around the county. Second half of the program is given to music and voices from the transgender community. Performances at 8 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday at Walnut Hills High School.
Cincinnati Opera | 1241 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-241-2742 (ARIA)
Sunday, June 9, 7:30 p.m.: Opera in the Park
Cincinnati Opera kicks off its 99th summer festival with this free, outdoor concert in Washington Park. The program includes selections of opera and musical theater favorites performed by cast members of “The Marriage of Figaro,” “Romeo and Juliet” and “Ariadne auf Naxos,” with a special appearance by Cincinnati favorite, Aaron Blake, all backed by the Cincinnati Opera Chorus and the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, led by “Ariadne auf Naxos” conductor Jun Märkl. Bring a blanket or lawn chairs.
Cincinnati Music Theatre | Aronoff Center, 650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202; 513-621-2787 (ARTS)
Opens Friday, June 7: “Home”
Besides its big productions, Cincinnati Music Theatre offers a handful of studio productions. This season’s second is an original cabaret production conceived and co-written by CMT board member Mark Motz and director Michele Mascari. “Home” features songs from musical theater, pop, movies, television and more to connect audiences with the many ways we look at home. Runs June 7, 8, 14 and 15 in the Aronoff’s Fifth Third Bank Theater – you know, the one facing Main Street.
Northern Kentucky University | 1 Louie B. Nunn Drive, Highland Heights, KY 41099; 859-572-5421
Opens Friday, June 7: “Fallen Angels”
NKU’s summer dinner theater series starts Friday with the Noël Coward comedy “Fallen Angels.” Before Julia and Jane married their husbands Fred and Willy, the synopsis begins, there was Maurice, a French former lover. Then Maurice shows up just as the husbands are out of town. What could go wrong? In the Stauss Theatre.
Welcome Project | 2936 Colerain Ave., Cincinnati, OH, 45225; 513-600-6117
Opens Saturday, June 8: Pedro Moreno exhibition
The Welcome Project, an outgrowth of Wave Pool Gallery, is an art and food based social enterprise run by and for Cincinnati’s refugee and immigrant community. The project now welcomes its first artist in residence: Pedro Moreno will exhibit a series of his paintings and ceramic works and host two public art classes this month. It’s the start of an artist residency program whose goal is to feature refugee and immigrant artists through an exhibition and related public educational programs. Exhibition runs through July 6.
• “Because I Said So”: Twenty artists contributed to this exhibition encompassing the range of experiences that occur when growing up with parents or parental figures. Through Saturday, June 8, at the Kennedy Heights Arts Center (6546 Montgomery Road, Cincinnati, OH 45213; 513-631-4278).