Eclectic is the word of the week. “Composed of elements drawn from various sources”. The elements are grand and the sources are broad for your end-of-summer pleasure. Check out a couple of our great symphony orchestras for some fun, not-always-classical programs, as well as eclectic (there’s that word, again) art exhibits and festivals. Acoustic blues in an Episcopal Church? We’ve got it. Indiana Jones in Cincinnati? You bet. Aaaand, if you’re up to it, the Western & Southern/WEBN iconic end-of-summer blast, Riverfest, blows into Newport on the Levee and Sawyer Point and Yeatman’s Cove and any other inch of riverfront space you can find to plop yourself while you wait (patiently, right?) for the Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks extravaganza. Have fun!
Wednesday, Aug. 30
Ziegler Park Cinema Series, “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” | 8:30 p.m., 1322 Sycamore St., Pendleton. DETAILS: Indiana Jones never gets old. No stars in the sky needed as Harrison Ford and Sean Connery light up the screen all by themselves. This third film in the franchise stars Connery as the senior Jones along side Ford as the two search for the ancient Holy Grail. If you don’t know how it turns out, stop by with a blanket and some snacks. If you do, stop by and watch it again, for the 453rd time. (All whips will be confiscated at the door.).
Caffe Vivace, Blue Wisp Big Band | 7 p.m., 975 E. McMillan St., Walnut Hills. 513-601-9897. DETAILS: Do you remember the original dark, smoky, gritty Blue Wisp Jazz Club on Madison Rd.? Yours Truly spent many an underage Wednesday night at the club sipping Diet Coke, listening to and loving the Blue Wisp Big Band. The club is gone, but the Blue Wisp Big Band will always command Wednesday nights in Cincinnati. A perfect way to get you through the rest of the week, don’t you think? (Caffe Vivace doesn’t just serve Diet Coke, either).
Shakespeare in the Park, “The Comedy of Errors” | 7 p.m., Village of Evendale Cultural Arts Center, 10500 Reading Rd., Evendale. DETAILS: Shakespeare in the Park winds up its 2023 season with final performances this week. Richmond, IN hosts at the Elstro Plaza, Thursday night, Devou Park on Friday and the Harry Whiting Brown Community Center in Glendale on Saturday. Take a picnic, a couple of comfortable chairs and enjoy these last few evenings. “Tis time, I think, to trudge, pack and be gone.” Free.
Thursday, Aug. 31
It’s Commonly Jazz, Lavieenna Campbell and Her Big Band | 6-8 p.m., Seasongood Pavilion, Eden Park. 513-357-2619. DETAILS: Continuing the long legacy of jazz in Cincinnati, 2023 is the 39th year for It’s Commonly Jazz. Remember the Swifton Commons Mall? You guessed it. This series had its humble beginnings at a suburban shopping mall. It has since grown into the longest running free jazz series in town. This summer the focus is on women and there are lots of good ones. Step out to lovely Eden Park and hear the great ladies of jazz!
Middletown Arts Center, “Free Bird: A New Series from Logan Walden” | 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m., 130 N. Verity Pkwy., Middletown. 513-424-2417. DETAILS: The “Free Bird” series depicts different birds from around the world with colors that could be imagined in the realm of fantasy, sci-fi or surrealism, genres heavily represented in Walden’s prior work. Opening reception, Sept. 8, 6-8 p.m. Exhibit on display through Oct. 19.
Friday, Sept. 1
Woodward Theater, Los Straightjackets with Jake La Botz Trio | 8 p.m., 1404 Main St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-345-7981. DETAILS: Instrumental rock band Los Straightjackets (best band name ever candidate?) takes the stage at the Woodward, Friday night. Their trademark masks began years ago as a joke, but when the audience went wild they never took them off. Singer/songwriter Jake La Botz plays “roots-drenched music that reflects his time performing in streets, bars, churches, and even tattoo parlors”.
ARTclectic, “Action and Abstraction” | 5-8 p.m., 6249 Stewart Ave., Silverton. 513-822-5200. DETAILS: This show features artworks capturing intense vigorous action, sporting pastimes, and abstractions. Many of the artists in the show have achieved signature status in numerous societies nationwide and have won “Best of Show” awards and prizes in the top juried national exhibitions. The opening reception features music by Blue Night Jazz Band (are we seeing a theme, here?), tasty bites and libations as well as the work of accomplished Cincinnati artists. Free.
Lebanon Theatre Company, “Souvenir: A fantasia on the life of Florence Foster Jenkins” | 10 S. Mechanic St., Lebanon. 513-932-8300. DETAILS: Playwright Steven Temperley reveals FFJ through the eyes (and ears) of her accompanist, Cosme McMoon in this two-actor production. We go to rehearsal with them and ultimately “attend” her foolish and final stinker of a performance at Carnegie Hall. The ending will leave you sighing and crying, begging the question, “What’s more important? What the audience hears or what you hear in your head?” Wright State University music professors Chuck Larkowski and Kim Warrick play Cosme and “Madame Flo.” Runs through Sept. 3.
Saturday, Sept. 2
Vulcan’s Forge Performing Arts Collaborative, “The Forge Shows Its Temper” | 1-7 p.m., Artsville, 5021 Whetsel Ave., Madisonville. 513-271-0805. DETAILS: Vulcan’s Forge Performing Arts Collaborative is the focal point for artists with disabilities, both physical and mental, to have their work presented to the Greater Cincinnati area, while providing an environment where artists can fellowship. Free.
Art on Vine | 12-6 p.m., Court Street Plaza, Downtown. DETAILS: This long-running Cincinnati art show had its humble beginnings in a Vine St. parking lot. Hard work and dedication have paid off to provide us with over 80 artists from which to choose our next prized ceramic or photograph or painting or anything else you can possibly imagine. Indulge in some good Court St. eats, too.
Whistle Stop Clay Works, Loveland Art Festival | 11 a.m.-4 p.m., 119 Harrison Ave., Loveland. DETAILS: Ceramics, fiber arts, handmade jewelry, prints, mixed media and paintings are just a few of the artworks for sale at the Loveland Art Festival. Before you leave the house look for some empty wall space or a nook without a knickknack and spend the afternoon finding the perfect piece to fill it. Free.
Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, “TV Guide” | 7:30 p.m., Devou Park Bandshell, Covington. 859-431-6216. DETAILS: Immerse yourself in some childhood nostalgia as the KSO turns up the TV for themes from your favorite shows from the 1950s to the 1990s. After intermission, change the channel to “Pink Panther,” “Bugs Bunny” and a few other surprises. “Perry Mason,” anybody? Only the best theme song, ever.
Antigone Music Collective, “Sounds You’ve Never Heard” | 7 p.m., BLOC Coffee Company, 801 Mt. Hope Ave., Price Hill. 513-429-4548. DETAILS: Founders of the Antigone Music Collective, Amelia Korbitz and Liam Battle are both graduates of CCM. Their primary focus is on contemporary classical music. They are excited to present music by Carter, Davis, Lena Frank, Kay, and Saariaho. Featuring BLOC Coffee Company cocktails and coffee drinks available for purchase during the event.
Sunday, Sept. 3
Blue Ash Montgomery Symphony Orchestra, “Celebrating America’s Great Composers” | 7 p.m., Tom Stone Amphitheater, 4309 Cooper Rd., Blue Ash. 513-745-8550. DETAILS: The orchestra performs a holiday concert celebrating some of America’s greatest composers. Aaron Copeland’s “An Outdoor Overture”, selections from “Rodeo” and Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess” are on the program, plus much more. Free.
Western & Southern/WEBN, Riverfest | Noon-9 p.m., Yeatman’s Cove, Sawyer Point, Newport on the Levee, downtown and Newport. DETAILS: The extravaganza kicks off at noon for this, the 47th year of the Queen City’s famous “WEBN Fireworks“. Live music, food trucks and lots of fun activities will keep you occupied until the show starts aboutt 9. Enter yourself in the Rubber Duck Regatta to win fabulous prizes. WEBN cranks up its legendary musical accompaniment to Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks.
Monday, Sept. 4
Bogart’s, Jai Wolf: Blue Babu Live | 7 p.m., 2621 Vine St., Corryville. 513-872-8801. DETAILS: The EP merged the sweet melodies of 80s synth-pop with the atmosphere and grandiosity of EDM, the intimacy and closeness of chillwave, and the thoughtful introspection of indie-rock. It’s a busy brew, but an easy listen, and it was the sound of Jai Wolf finding his voice. If you’re not too exhausted from all of your weekend gallivanting, check this out. Sounds interesting.
Tuesday, Sept. 5
Christ Church Cathedral, Music Live @ Lunch | 12:10 p.m., 318 E. Fourth St., Downtown. 513-621-1817. DETAILS: Pork City Slim plays Acoustic Piedmont, Delta and Chicago Blues, ragtime, boogie and American music. Music Live at Lunch is a free, weekly concert series featuring a variety of music. Bring your own lunch or buy one at the cathedral. Convenient parking is located in the Queen City Square Garage across the street from the cathedral’s Fourth Street entrance.
Jazz at the Square, Aaron Jacobs | 5-8 p.m., Fountain Square, downtown. DETAILS: Jazz bassist Aaron Jacobs and friends take the stage for your post-workday listening pleasure. Stop and enjoy the music of Duke Ellington for a few on your way to the garage or meeting up with friends. Fountain Bar offers a selection of beer, wine, hard seltzer, spirits and Coca Cola products at all events. Free.