It’s an in-between sort of week: not quite Valentine’s Day, not quite Presidents Day or Mardi Gras. Don’t think that means there isn’t still plenty to do, though. A quick look at the events below will make it clear that you have no excuse not to stay busy, entertained and enlightened, here on the banks of the Ohio.
‘Daughters of the Dust’
Thursday, Feb. 6, 7 p.m. | 953 Eden Park Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45202
The Cincinnati Art Museum’s Women Breaking Boundaries film series continues with Julie Dash’s 1991 portrait of Gullah families at the turn of the 20th century as they wrestle with issues still fresh today: When is it time to move on, and how do you honor and continue your culture when you do? (The unique blend that is Gullah culture was created when Yoruba people from West Africa were brought to the coastal United States as slaves.) CAM is showing the 25th anniversary remastered version in Fath Auditorium. A moderated discussion follows the screening.
cincinnatiartmuseum.org or 513-721-2787 (ARTS)
‘Days of Heaven’
Tuesday, Feb. 11, 7 p.m. | 1301 Western Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45203
You may recall our telling you in December that, to mark its 10th anniversary, FotoFocus was undertaking a film series under the aegis of C. Jacqueline Wood, formerly director of the Mini Microcinema. The series, dubbed Second Screens, is a movable feast for the eyes and ears, taking advantage of many venues in town. The second offering, Terrence Malick’s “Days of Heaven” from 1978, will brighten the screen of the newsreel theater at Union Terminal (aka the Museum Center). Richard Gere, a fugitive from Chicago, is pitted against a shy, rich Texan (Sam Shepard) for the love of Abby (Brooke Adams). This week it’s fair to note it’s an Oscar winner, for Néstor Almendros’s cinematography.
fotofocus.org or 513-287-7000
Classic Oscar winners: ‘The Godfather: Part II’
Friday, Feb. 7, 7 p.m. | Esquire Theatre, 320 Ludlow Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45220
I’m willing to stipulate that love of the “Godfather” movies is partly a guy thing. But only partly. “The Godfather: Part II” proves, like precious few other movies in cinema history, that a sequel can actually be better than the original. The Esquire Theatre’s pre-Oscar festival of classic Oscar winners heads into its final weekend with this six-time Oscar winner (including best picture, director, adapted screenplay and original score), the combination prequel-sequel in the saga of the Corleone crime family. Sure, it’s more myth than gangster history, but who cares? “I know it was you, Fredo….”
esquiretheatre.com or 513-281-8750
Last chance: Oscar-nominated short documentaries
Through Saturday, Feb. 8 | 719 Race St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
We told you last week about Cincinnati World Cinema’s two-part showings of the Oscar-nominated short documentaries. Two showings of each three-film program remain; check the website for the details.
cincyworldcinema.org or 859-957-3456 (FILM)
Cincinnati Storytelling Festival
Thursday through Saturday, Feb. 6-8 | 3064 Harrison Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45211
The folks at Madcap Puppets thought it would be a shame not to share their new home in Westwood – a restored Cincinnati Bell exchange station – for a special event or two, so here it is: The Cincinnati Storytelling Festival welcomes three storytellers of national renown to the Madcap Center. Lyn Ford, Bil Lepp and Paul Strickland tell their tales over three days of programming, which also features some locals who know a good story or two – Greg Hand, Dave Levy and Molly Wellmann. Saturday includes workshops, too.
cincinnatilandmarkproductions.com or 513-241-6550
African Americans in 19th century Cincinnati
Saturday, Feb. 8, 2 p.m. | 800 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
February is Black History Month, a month-long celebration of the achievements of African Americans that grew out of Negro History Week, established in 1926. Venues and organizations across town are offering special events and programming. One of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County’s contributions is a retrospective by author and retired Cincinnati Enquirer reporter Steve Kemme. He’ll talk about African American community and culture in Cincinnati in the 1800s.
cincinnatilibrary.org or 513-369-6900
Bach Ensemble of St. Thomas
Sunday, Feb. 9, 5 p.m. | 100 Miami Ave., Terrace Park, OH 45174
The Bach Ensemble’s vespers series continues with “Meine Seufzer, meine Tränen” (My sighs, my tears), an early Bach cantata from 1726. It was written for the second Sunday after Epiphany, so it’s clearly in the ballpark on the calendar. Opening the program at St. Thomas Episcopal Church is the Concerto for Flute, Oboe d’amore and Viola d’amore by Telemann, with CSO members Randy Bowman, Dwight Parry and Charles Morey handling the solo duties.
bachensemble.org or 513-831-2052
CCM: ‘Dumbarton Oaks’
Thursday, Feb. 6, 7:30 p.m. | Robert Werner Recital Hall, 290 CCM Blvd., Cincinnati, OH 45221
With the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra focusing on its popular August festival, where’s a lover of small-ensemble music to turn the rest of the year? The College-Conservatory of Music has just the ticket: the CCM Chamber Orchestra. Centerpiece of Thursday’s program is Stravinsky’s “Dumbarton Oaks” concerto, commissioned by the owners of the Dumbarton Oaks mansion, most famous as the site of the 1944 conference that ironed out the plans for the establishment of the United Nations. Stravinsky’s work is, by request, an homage to Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos. Also on tap are music by Debussy, Françaix and Martinů.
ccm.uc.edu or 513-556-6638
Friday, Feb. 7, 7 p.m. | Knox Presbyterian Church, 3400 Michigan Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45208
Canadian-American pianist Kara Huber and guitarist Andrew Hull team up for a musical evening. Hull will play his “Seven Studies for Guitar,” fresh off the work’s West Coast premiere, plus lyrical miniatures, duets with Huber, and solo pieces from guitar favorites Rodrigo and Barrios. Huber is a doctoral student at CCM who next weekend performs Ravel’s Concerto for the Left Hand with CCM’s Philharmonia Orchestra under guest conductor Louis Langrée.
karahuber.com or 217-549-2424
’10-minute Connections: Justice’
Monday, Feb. 10, 10 p.m. | Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati, 1127 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
ETC presents this evening of 10-minute plays by local playwrights as a theatrical appetizer to its regional premiere of “Pipeline” by Dominique Morriseau. The short plays on the theme of justice were selected from submissions; they’ll be paired with Morriseau’s short play “Night Vision.” It’s part of ETC’s Studio Series, which takes place in the company’s rehearsal hall.
ensemblecincinnati.org or 513-421-3555
Last chance: ‘In the Night Time’
Through Saturday, Feb. 8 | Know Theatre, 1120 Jackson St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
It’s the last weekend for the U.S. premiere of this 2016 apocalyptic bedtime story by Nina Segal. In the small hours of the night, a man and woman try to soothe their screaming infant – but the hours grow longer, the world becomes elastic and the horrors that scar our planet threaten to crash into the baby’s room.
knowtheatre.com or 513-300-5669
Last chance: ‘Blues for an Alabama Sky’
Through Saturday, Jan. 24 | Falcon Theatre, 636 Monmouth St., Newport, KY 41071
By the early 1930s, the Great Depression had squelched much of the energy and cultural vibrancy of the 1920s Harlem Renaissance. In Pearl Cleage’s “Blues for an Alabama Sky,” economic realities force reflection among characters with conflicting personalities and politics.
falcontheater.net or 513-479-6783
‘N.C. Wyeth: New Perspectives’
Opens Saturday, Feb. 8 | Taft Museum of Art, 316 Pike St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
Co-organized by the Brandywine River Museum of Art in Chadds Ford, Pa., and the Portland Museum of Art in Maine, this exhibition brings together around 50 large-scale paintings by the patriarch of one of America’s most prominent artistic families. The works span the decades from the American impressionist style of the 1910s to the regionalist realism of the 1930s and ’40s. If all you know of Wyeth is his illustrations for Scribner’s Illustrated Classics editions, you don’t know the whole story (though they’re great illustrations). Runs through May 3.
taftmuseum.org or 513-241-0343
‘Todd Pavlisko: Pop Supernatural’
Friday, Feb. 7, 6-8 p.m. | Weston Art Gallery, 650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202
“Pop Supernatural” comprises three interconnected bodies of work by Ohio-born, New York-based artist Todd Pavlisko. In the Weston’s atrium, “All the Money I Found in a Year” revisits Pavlisko’s ongoing series by configuring hundreds of glistening gold-plated coins into a beautiful cosmos-like orb. Directly beneath, “Untitled, Sledgehammer” uses metaphorical pounding spheres of sledgehammers to suggest the meteoric impact of cultural currents. Iconic and historic figures rendered in oversized, carved wooden Pez dispensers dominate the Weston’s lower galleries. Runs through April 5.
cincinnatiarts.org or 513-977-4165