Culture FIX: April 20-26

And the seasons begin to close… It does not seem possible that we are nearing the end of the main 2021-22 performance season, but here we are. Get ’em while they’re hot. Just a few weeks left before the switch-over to summer. Still plenty of great things to choose from, I promise!

Just in: Exhibit extended…

Pixar_Monsters Inc.jpg

Fans of “Toy Story,” “Cars,” “Inside Out,” “Brave” and “Coco” rejoice. Cincinnati Museum Center has extended “The Science Behind Pixar” exhibit through the summer.

Wednesday, April 20 

Caroline Bowman as Elsa and Caroline Innerbichler as Anna in “Frozen”
Photo by Deen van Meer

Broadway in Cincinnati, “Frozen” | 7:30 p.m. Procter & Gamble Hall, Aronoff Center, 650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-721-3344. DETAILS: It’s time to “Let it go,” People. It looks like a few seats remain for opening night. The critically acclaimed movie is now a Broadway hit musical, as you may know. But are you aware the stage version has an expanded score with a dozen additional musical numbers? Even more hiigh notes to tickle your ear drums. Runs through May 1.

Cincinnati Landmark Productions, “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” | 7:30 p.m. Warsaw Federal Incline Theater, 801 Matson Pl, Cincinnati, OH 45204. 513-241-6550. DETAILS: Summer comes early this year at the Incline. This first show of the 2022 Summer Classic Season tells the tale of a clever slave, Pseudolus, struggling to earn his freedom by winning the hand of a slow-witted, yet beautiful courtesan named Philia for his young master, Hero. Full of crazy gags, slapstick and mistaken identities, this laugh riot is highlighted by the music and lyrics of a young Stephen Sondheim. Runs Wednesday-Sunday through May 15.

Thursday, April 21 

Cincinnati Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, Big Band Series | 7 p.m. The Redmoor, Mt. Lookout Square. 513-280-8181. DETAILS: For the final Big Band concert this season, visionary, award-winning trumpeter Ingrid Jensen joins the CCJO in “Angel Song,” a tribute to the music of trumpeter/composer Kenny Wheeler, who passed away in 2014. Expect some of Wheeler’s best-known tunes and, as always with the CCJO, some new takes on his music. And you can eat while you listen!

Image for “The Burials” by Mikki Graf

College-Conservatory of Music, The Burials | 7:30 p.m. Cohen Family Studio Theater, University of Cincinnati. 513-556-4183. DETAILS: Closing CCM’s stage season, this story of a shooting rampage in an American high school represents the struggles between civic responsibility and personal freedom, and the cost to those most affected — our young people. Written by Caitlin Parrish and directed by CCM’s Richard Hess, the play runs through Sunday.

Friday, April 22 

Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Classical Roots | 7:30 p.m. Music Hall, 1241 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-381-3300. DETAILS: Cincinnati Pops Conductor John Morris Russell and the CSO celebrate 20+ years of Classical Roots, which has become a Queen City tradition. The program celebrates Black voices and stories from American music and theater with selections from “Ragtime” and “The Wiz,” plus arias from Terence Blanchard’s highly-acclaimed new opera “Fire Shut Up in My Bones” and this summer’s Cincinnati Opera premiere “Castor and Patience,” with music by Gregory Spears and libretto by former U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith. The Classical Roots Community Choir is joined by this summer’s Patience, Talise Trevigne, vocalists Michael Preacely and Alton Fitzgerald White.

Tameca Cole: “Locked in the Dark”

National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, “Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration” | 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Skirball gallery, 50 E. Freedom Way, Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-333-7500. DETAILS: This exhibit, featuring more than 30 artists, illustrates the effect of our US prison system through the lens of contemporary art. The work of artists who are or have been incarcerated is shown side-by-side with those who have not, revealing how punitive governance, predatory policing, and mass imprisonment have affected millions of those incarcerated. On display through Aug. 7.

NKU alumni, pianists Anna and Dmitri Shelest

Northern Kentucky University, Ukraine Benefit Concert | 7 p.m. Greaves Concert Hall, NKU. DETAILS: Here is a chance to hear great music from Ukraine and the US while supporting those fleeing the Russian atrocities. World-renowned pianists and NKU alumni Anna Shelest and Dmitri Shelest perform a special one-night-only benefit concert, with 100% of proceeds going to support Ukrainian refugee relief efforts at Kentucky Refugee Ministries and Refugee Connect. Tickets: $5-$50.

Xavier Music Series, pianist Ivo Pogorelich | 8 p.m. Gallagher Center Theater, Xavier University. 513-745-3161. DETAILS: There are innumberable outstanding pianists across the globe who play fast, accurately and with suitable expression. But every once in awhile someone comes along with a different way of looking at the music on the page, with a level of flash and panache that makes you sit up and take notice. I was working in the classical record business in 1980 when Ivo Pogorelich literally fractured the 10th International Chopin Competition because judges were so diametrically opposed regarding his playiing – genius or disrespectful? Fans flocked to buy his debut recording. Much older now, and perhaps a bit less confrontational, his artistry remains produgious, and its a fantastic thing that Polina Bespalko has brought him to play in the Queen City. (I hope there are still tickets…)

Saturday, April 23 

Beech Acres Parenting Center, Kickin’ It For Kids | 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Reeves Golf Course, 4757 Playfield Lane (near Lunken Airport). DETAILS: I grew up playing golf. My step-son plays disc golf. In this event benefiting Beech Acres, teams will compete in a family-friendly game of soccer golf, kicking soccer balls down golf fairways into oversized holes. Given Saturday’s forecast high of 82, this might be a great way to burn of some workweek steam, and all for a good cause.

Christ Church Cathedral, SONUS | 318 E. 4th St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-621-1817. DETAILS: Billing themselves the “premiere modern a capella choir of Nashville,” this excellent, self-conducted, collaborative ensemble specializes in music by living composers. This Christ Church performance will feature music by Arvo Pärt, Ola Gjeilo, Paul Mealor and other diverse new voices. And they are really good. If Saturday night is not possible, head over to Urban Artifact in Northside, 4 p.m. Sunday, for a music and tasting experience with wine and organic chocolate. Christ Church performance is free. Urban Artifact event is ticketed.

Cincinnati Ballet, Club B: Eleganza | 8 p.m.-midnight. Margaret and Michael Valentine Center for Dance, 1801 Gilbert Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45202 DETAILS: Celebrating Artistic Director Victoria Morgan’s 25th and final season with Cincinnati Ballet, this event is all about silver. Arriving guests will walk the silver runway hosted by drag artists Brock Leah Spears and Lady Phaedra, then head upstairs for dance performances, Q102 dueling DJS and emcee Mollie Watson, DJ Etrayn, Millennium Robots, celebrity guests, giveaways, open bar, food and much more. Attendees should adorn themselves in their “chicest silver” in honor of Victoria’s 25th. Tickets start at just $50.

Andrew Hubbard of Exhale Dance Tribe

Exhale Dance Tribe, “Multiverse” | 5 & 8 p.m. Fifth Third Theater, Aronoff Center, 650 Walnut St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-621-2787. DETAILS: It is great to see the continuing return of contemporary dance in Cincinnati after what seems like forever. Missy and Andrew Hubbard have shown themselves to be among the very best choreographers in Cincinnati, collaborating with Cincinnati Ballet and the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, among others. This first performance at the Aronoff in two years features world premiere works by Missy and Andrew, plus Lauren Adams and Carlos Neto.

Milford Historical Society, Milford Historic Home Tour, | 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 906 Main St., Milford, OH 45150. 513-248-0324. DETAILS: Nine homes are on the tour, surrounding downtown Milford, on the following streets: Cleveland, Mound, Mill, Center, Garfield, Forest and Main. At each home you can enter to win a prize. A limited number of tickets are available. Day-of tickets will be available for $40.00, if spots are available.

Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park & Museum, Art & Earth Day | 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. 1763 Hamilton-Cleves Rd., State Route 128, Hamilton, OH 45013. 513-868-1234. DETAILS: Take advantage of what promises to be a beautiful, warm day and celebrate the integration of art and nature with workshops, art competitions, kids’ activities, guided tours and hikes and more.

Ajanae Dawkins

Taft Museum, Duncanson Closing Reception | 7–9 p.m. Artsville, 5021 Whetsel Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45227. DETAILS: This final event caps off the 35th Duncanson Artist-in-Residence, featuring writer and performance artist Ajanae Dawkins. The evening includes spoken word performances by Britany Rogers and Cynthia Amoah, plus live music provided by DJ O Sharp and vocalist Caroline Bennett. A cash bar is available, but otherwise the event is free. Registration is required. 

Sunday, April 24 

POSTPONED due to family emergency

concert:nova, Houses of Zodiac, Poems for Cello | 5 p.m. Woodward Theater, 1404 Main St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. DETAILS: This project is a collaboration between composer Paola Prestini and her husband, cellist Jeffrey Zeigler. The performance combines spoken word, movement, music and images to explore the intersection of mind, body and nature, drawing inspiration from the writings of Anaïs Nin, Pabol Neruda, Brenda Shaughnessy, and Natasha Trethewey. An accompanying film and immersive video installation was directed by filmmaker Murat Eyuboglu, featuring New York City Ballet soloist Georgina Pazcoguin and Butoh dancer Dai Matsuoka.

Stephen Price

Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church – Organ Concert Series | 4 p.m. 1345 Grace Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45208. 513-871-1345. DETAILS: Ball State University faculty member Stephen Price brings this annual series to a close, showcasing the “King of Instruments” via the church’s fine Casavant Frères organ. If you only know the pipe organ from what you’ve heard during church services, maybe it’s time to treat your ears to its full range of colors. What do all those buttons do, after all?

Guitar art by Megan Triantafillou

Musicians for Health, Guitar Art Show | 3-5 p.m. Banz Art Studio, 221 McFarland St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. DETAILS: A collection of local artists have transformed guitars into works of art. View or bid on these artful guitars, plus wine baskets and other silent auction items. Artists include Ines Alvidres, Cedric Michael Cox, Pam Kravetz, Jolie Harris, Jimi Jones, Susan Schuler, Margo Zeff, Patrick Doss, Susan Mahan, Megan Heekin Triantafillou. Proceeds benefit MFH’s programs promoting music and wellness.

Monday, April 25 

Know Theatre, Cincy Fringe Fauxpening Day Tailgate Party | 6 p.m.-11 p.m. 1120 Jackson St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-300-5669. DETAILS: Get into the Fringe spirit with BBQ, brews, and the first view of the 2022 Cincinnati Fringe Festival schedule.

Scott Belck and the Limehouse Ramblers

Memorial Hall, Jazz at the Memo | 7 p.m. 1225 Elm St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. 513-977-8838. DETAILS: Scott Belck and the Limehouse Ramblers honor the spirit of Louis Armstrong in this final indoor concert of the series featuring current and past CCM faculty members: Belck (trumpet), Rick Van Matre (clarinet), Vaughn Wiester (trombone), Phil DeGreg (piano), Chris Berg (bass) and Jim Leslie (drums). In May, and through September, the series moves across the street to Washington Park.

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