What to Do/Hear/See | Sept. 18-24

There’s no doubt about it: It’s summer’s last week, and the days are getting shorter. Better get in a few last festivals while we can. Apparently it’s time for the music season to explode into full glory, too. Read on, and you’ll see what we mean.

Choreographer Heather Britt’s “When I Still Needed You” at New Works


Cincinnati Ballet: New Works

Through Sept. 22 |  Jarson-Kaplan Theater, Aronoff Center, 650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202

If you missed it last weekend, fret not. There are six performances of Cincinnati Ballet’s season-opening program remaining, starting at 7:30 tonight. Just to refresh your memory: It comprises six world premieres (three by company dancers). 513-621-5282 or cballet.org


Oktoberfest Zinzinnati

Friday-Sunday, Sept. 20-22 | Second and Third streets between Walnut and Elm, Cincinnati, OH 45202

Since the world’s largest Oktoberfest is (as it should be) in Munich, the folks that put on Cincinnati’s version have declared ours “America’s Oktoberfest.” It’s a celebration of all our ritual favorites: the Running of Wieners (dogs, that is), the World’s Largest Chicken Dance, nonstop music and your entire year’s allotment of brats, metts and cream puffs (I still prefer strudel). Not to mention enough beers on tap to quench any thirst. This year, the chicken dance has expanded to all nine of the festival’s entertainment stages, a pretty sure sign that a shark has been jumped over Fort Washington Way. oktoberfestzinzinnati.com

Jewish music and dance at the ish Festival

ish Festival

Sunday, Sept. 22, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. | Washington Park, 1230 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202

If you’re in the mood for a more personal festival experience, try ish. The Cincinnati-based community festival of Jewish and Israeli arts and culture includes art (and artists), vendors, food, music and cultural activities. ishfestival.com


The Mini Microcinema: ‘Exploring the Restless Earth’

Thursday, Sept. 19, 7:30 p.m. | 1329 Main St., Cincinnati, OH 45202

This is a bittersweet task. Although some specialized film festivals have kept us rapt in the dark the past few weeks, we looked forward to the start of the Mini’s fall season. That happened Tuesday with its seventh Open Screen event (like open mic night but, you know, with movies). Paired with that happy occasion, though, was word that the Mini’s screen at 1329 Main St. will go dark for good at the end of the year. The dedicated staff promises their unique blend of cinema won’t go away, but what that may look like come 2020, we don’t know.If you want to keep that kind of programming alive in town, go and support them. On Thursday, it’s four films created for Encyclopedia Britannica films between 1970 and 1986. In that constrained form, Bert Van Bork captured dramatic and remarkable images. Think of it as the “Planet Earth” of our childhoods. They’ll be shown as they were intended, the Mini assures us – in “glorious 16mm”! (I hope someone knows where the loop reset lever is on the projector.) mini-cinema.org


Freedom Center: Update: ‘Spies of Mississippi’

Thursday, Sept. 19 | National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, 50 E. Freedom Way, Cincinnati, OH 45202

We told you last week that the screening of “Spies of Mississippi” was the first installment of a two-part event. We’re sorry to report that Part II, a lecture by reporter Jerry Mitchell, has been canceled. Mitchell’s investigative reporting helped lead to the conviction of four Ku Klux Klan members for lethal crimes in the 1960s. His cancelation may be related to his latest project, an expose of conditions in today’s Mississippi’s prisons. It recently caught the attention of many state officials. freedomcenter.org


Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra: Opening Day

Friday, Sept. 20, 11 a.m. | Music Hall, 1241 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202

If you didn’t already know, this season is the CSO’s 125th, which is a pretty impressive milestone. Louis Langrée and his merry band have scheduled special events through the season to help celebrate, starting with the opening program. It’s Richard Strauss’s immense “Alpine Symphony,” which calls for an ensemble of 125 to perform. It’s the last of the composer’s big symphonic works (he focused on opera afterward), and its second half boasts some of the most exciting music in the repertoire.

The “Alpine Symphony” has a special place in CSO history, too, because the orchestra, under Ernst Kunwald, gave the work’s U.S. premiere in 1916 – just two years before anti-German World War I hysteria forced Kunwald from town.

Not one to look backward, Langrée pairs Strauss with the U.S. premiere of Bryce Dessner’s Concerto for Two Pianos. The Labèque sisters, the gold standard for piano duos, handles the solo duties. Dessner, of course, is the Cincinnati-born composer who also heads the local MusicNow festival and leads the alt-rock band The National.

The concert, which opens with Strauss’s swashbuckling tone poem, “Don Juan,” repeats Saturday evening at 8 p.m. 513-381-3300 or cincinnatisymphony.org

Bach Ensemble of St. Thomas: Bach Vespers

Sunday, Sept. 22, 5 p.m. | St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 100 Miami Ave., Terrace Park, OH 45174

Awe lies at the heart of the first cantata of the Bach Ensemble’s 2019-20 season. Cantata 105, “Herr, Gehe Nicht ins Gericht mit Deinem Knecht” (Lord, do not pass judgment on Your servant), was first performed in 1723 in Leipzig, Germany, but its message of warning against false gods and seeking consolation in temptation resonates across the centuries. 513-831-2052 or bachensemble.org 

Fitton Center: Ignacio Berroa Trio

Saturday, Sept. 21, 7:30 p.m. | 101 S. Monument Ave., Hamilton, OH 45011

Maybe it’s Cuba’s fault. First, there’s the omnimax movie at the museum center. Now Ignacio Berroa, drummer for Dizzy Gillespie and Afro-Cuban jazz giant, brings his trio to the banks of the Great Miami. No wonder it’s still hot and humid up here! It’s a return visit for Berroa, but the previous visit sold out, so don’t miss the chance to hear him again. This is the kickoff of the Fitton’s Showstoppers series. 513-863-8873, x110 or fittoncenter.org

Xavier Music Series: Dina Ivanova

Friday, Sept. 20, 8 p.m. | Kenwood Country Club, 6501 Kenwood Road, Madeira, OH 45243

Xavier University’s impressive and eclectic Music Series launches its 2019-20 season on a classical note with a recital by Dina Ivanova. Just 25, the Russian pianist has already racked up impressive competition wins and a similar roll call of solo and orchestral appearances around the world. The concert is off campus at the Kenwood Country Club. 513-745-3000 or xavier.edu/musicseries

Ashley Hall: Variations on “Carnival of Venice”

Matinée Musicale: Ashley Hall

Sunday, Sept. 22, 3 p.m. | Memorial Hall, 1225 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202

Matinée Musicale says it isn’t the kind of organization to toot its own horn about its 107th season. It doesn’t have to, of course, with Ashley Hall and her trumpet on hand. Locals might know this CCM grad from her work as principal of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra or her former position in the Dayton Philharmonic, but her career has taken her much farther afield – including to Taiwan, South Korea, New Zealand, Australia, Mexico, Germany and China. On Sunday, she gets the spotlight all to herself for this solo appearance.She’ll also give a master class at 1 p.m. Monday at Anderson High School. 513-231-0964, 859-781-0801 or matineemusicalecincinnati.org

Joan Hall’s environmentally inspired work at Pyramid Hill


Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park and Museum: ‘Global Contamination: It’s All One Sea’

Opens Friday, Sept. 20 | 1763 Hamilton Cleves Road, Hamilton, OH 45013

Mixed-media artist Joan Hall documents pollution on the Gulf Coast of Louisiana using debris she collected from the shore in 2011. The Ohio artist’s installation is on display through Nov. 30. Opening reception is 5:30 p.m. Friday. 513-868-1234 or pyramidhill.org

“To the Morning Star” at HUC’s Skirball Museum

The Skirball Museum: ‘Modern Israeli Art’

Opens Thursday, Sept. 19 | Hebrew-Union College, 3101 Clifton Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45220

Ten works by some of the best-known and most influential artists living and working in Israel throughout the 20th century were recently gifted to the Skirball Museum by Nancy Berman and Alan Bloch. You can see them on display at the HUC campus through Jan. 5. Opening reception, including live entertainment, is 5:30 p.m. Thursday at HUC’s Mayerson Hall. 513-487-3098 or huc.edu/research/museums

UC College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning: ‘200 Years of Curation’

Opens Wednesday, Sept. 18 | Reed Gallery, DAAP, 2600 Clifton Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45221

Have you forgotten that it’s UC’s bicentennial? DAAP’s Reed Gallery has assembled an exhibition to help make sure you don’t. Five university archives have contributed to the showing of objects, artifacts, documents and art works from the institution’s first two centuries. Through Dec. 1. Reception is 5 p.m. Nov. 7. 513-556-2839 or daap.uc.edu


Up I-75 a few dozen miles, the Dayton Art Institute’s “Monet and Impressionism exhibition has been extended through this weekend (456 Belmonte Park North, Dayton, OH 45405). It includes works by Degas, Matisse, Pissarro and Renoir in addition to its namesake. Closes Sunday, Sept. 22. 937-223-4278 or daytonartinstitute.org

More Arts & Culture listings: Cultural Exhibits, Dance, Festivals, Film, Literary, Music, Opera, Theater, Visual Art

Discover more from Movers & Makers

Subscribe to get the latest posts to your email.