Culture FIX: April 17-23

What a week. From Carole King to ceramics to fairy tales, take your pick from an eclectic collection of culture offerings. High points include a CCM master class offered by CSO violinist Augustin Hadelich or a fantastical, horrific look at the potential of technology. Or check out the first City Flea of the year, Spring Vintage Market, in Norwood. Celtic Woman is in town aaaaaand, there’s opera. There’s always opera. Have fun!

Wednesday, April 17

Sydney Higgins

Cincinnati Landmark Productions, “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical” | 7:30 p.m., Warsaw Federal Incline Theater, 801 Matson Place, East Price Hill. 513-241-6550. DETAILS: Iconic singer/songwriter Carole King’s early life and career is played out in this 2013 musical with book by Douglas McGrath and music and lyrics by, well, you can figure that out. CLP opens its summer season at the Incline Theater with Sydney Higgins in the title role and Greg Moore as lyricist Gerry Goffin. Even the most diehard classical music fan has their favorite Carole King song. Have some dinner at the Incline Public House across the way before you go for the best view of the city, anywhere (make reservations when you purchase your show tickets). “I feel the earth. move. under my feet. I feel the sky tumb-ble-lin down.” Yeah, OK. What’s your favorite, then?


Cincinnati Opera, Opera Raps: Violetta’s Chosen Family | 7:30 p.m., First Lutheran Church, 1208 Race St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-241-2742. DETAILS: And, in Cincinnati, there’s ALWAYS opera. Cincinnati Opera warms up for its summer season with a preview of the 2024 production of Giuseppe Verdi’s “La Traviata.” Stage director Trevore Ross explores this beloved masterpiece through the lens of the opera’s heroine, the Parisian courtesan Violetta Valéry and the company she keeps. Soprano Dana Pundt and tenor Pedro Barbosa provide musical excerpts you’ve come to know and love. Free, but reservations required.

Thursday, April 18

The Bygones

The Woodward, The Bygones | 7:30 p.m., 1404 Main St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-345-7981. DETAILS: Allison Young and Joshua Lee Turner comprise this unique indie folk duo from the United Kingdom. They describe their sound as a combo of unexpected genres, from traditional jazz to ’70’s singer-songwriter, classic country to bossa nova. Making their US debut in 2023 to sold out crowds as The Bygones, Young and Turner embark on this national tour to support their first full-length album of original music.

Friday, April 19

Kyle Cottier

Manifest Gallery, Drawn 2024, Recent Silver Drawings by Carlton Nell Jr, Soft, Modular | 6-9 p.m., 2727 Woodburn Ave., E. Walnut Hills. 513-861-3638. DETAILS: Interestingly enough, Manifest Gallery was founded in-part “to stand for the importance of drawing as a process, skill and discipline, and as a continuing viable product of the creative fine art and design fields.” Drawn 2024 exhibits all media relevant to the practice (including non-traditional approaches), any style, and any genre (fine art, illustration, design, conceptual, realism). Also, Carlton Nell Jr, an Alabama painter and draftsman, submits drawings of his surroundings. Soft explores visual, tactile, emotional or material softness. And Modular is an exhibit of works made of or about individual components, about reconfiguration, about building blocks, about the parts of the whole. Want to beat the crowd? A ticketed preview is available Thursday, April 18, 7-9 p.m. All four exhibits run through May 17.


Queen City Clay

Queen City Clay, “influende/d” | Opening Reception, 5-8 p.m., 2760 Highland Ave., Norwood. 513-871-2529. DETAILS: This unique exhibit is about the mentee’s relationship with the mentor. What influences can be directly seen and what is their importance? A curated collection of pairs is on display – teacher and student – depicting this relationship in the field of ceramics. Check out Queen City Clay for an array of services, workshops and events to satisfy all of your ceramically creative urges. Through May 31.


Lumos Players, “Into The Woods” | 7:30 p.m., Lakeview United Church of Christ, 8639 Columbia Road, Maineville. 513-683-2073. DETAILS: This Maineville-area theater group continues its 2024 season with a production of James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim’s Tony award-winning musical. Seemingly everyone’s favorite fairy tale character comes to life in this story about wishes and quests. Don’t miss Jack, Rapunzel, a Witch, a Baker, Little Red and Cinderella in this bigger than life lesson about venturing into the woods and the choices and consequences that define our lives. Zachary Julian and Falecia Frederick lead the cast as the Baker and his Wife. Runs through April 27.

Cincinnati Arts Association, Celtic Woman: 20th Anniversary Tour | 7:30 p.m., Proctor & Gamble Hall, Aronoff Center for the Arts, downtown. 513-621-2787. DETAILS: Hard to believe it’s been 20 years since Celtic Woman first brought its unique blend of Irish classic and contemporary music to the stage, but it’s here. Ireland’s most talented musicians make a brief stop in oh-so German Zinzinnati for an evening of music that echoes Ireland’s rich musical and cultural heritage. Park once and cross the Channel to Nicholson’s for some post-show beers and bites. One night only.

Saturday, April 20

Exhale Dance Tribe, “The Silence of Flowers” | 8 p.m., Jarson Kaplan Theater, Aronoff Center, downtown. 513-621-2787. DETAILS: Exhale’s spring concert features new works by company founders and Artistic Directors Missy Lay Zimmer and Andrew Hubbard and up and coming Exhale dancer and choreographer Maddy Cundiff. Celebrating Earth-based philosophies in their practices, Exhale is rooted in rhythmic storytelling that will leave an emotional imprint.


Factory 52

City Flea, Spring Vintage Market | 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Factory 52, 4590 Beech St., Norwood. 513-206-8741. DETAILS: Check out all-things vintage in this, the first Flea of the year. Factory 52 is the former US Playing Card factory repurposed as a new “lifestyle destination” where you can find all kinds of things to see, do and eat. There’s just something about vintage, isn’t there? Cool stuff you just can’t find, these days (yes, there’s probably a reason for that). Find that perfect object for your own repurposing project. Enjoy all that is old in a place that is new.


CCM Chamber Choir
(Photo by Mark Lyons)

College Conservatory of Music, Chamber Choir: “The Tower and the Garden” | 7:30 p.m., Knox Presbyterian Church, 3400 Michigan Ave., Hyde Park. 513-321-2573. DETAILS: The Chamber Choir welcomes CCM professor of collaborative piano Kenneth Griffiths for Henk Badings’ evocative “Trois Chanson Bretonnes.” The choir also performs “The Tower and the Garden” by Gregory Spears, based on poems by Thomas Merton, Denise Levertov and Keith Garebian. Scored for choir and string quartet, the texts juxtapose the dangers of technological hubris (the tower) and the need for a place of refuge (the garden) in a world threatened by war and ecological disaster. Directed by Joe Miller.


Augustin Hadelich
(Photo by Suxiao Yang)

Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, “Hadelich and Holland” | 7:30 p.m., Music Hall, 1241 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-381-3300. DETAILS: Grammy-winning violinist Augustin Hadelich returns to Music Hall for Johannes Brahms’ Violin Concerto in D Major. Brahms modeled his concerto on Beethoven’s violin concerto, even writing it in the same key. As we learned about some pieces last week, this too, failed to catch on immediately. Fortunately, it has long since settled into the standard violin repertoire and for good reason. Also on the program are Arnold Schoenberg’s “Verklarte Nacht” (Transfigured Night) and a CSO co-commission and CSO premiere by Jonathan Bailey Holland, “Assemble.” Hadelich also conducts a free violin master class in CCM’s Patricia Corbett Theater on Thursday, April 18 at 5:30. If you’ve never experienced a master class by a classical music artist get close-up and listen in.                

Sunday, April 21

Cincinnati Song Initiative, “To the Woods” | 3 p.m., ARCO, 3301 Price Ave., Price Hill. 513-251-3800. DETAILS: Songs about science. Why not? The words of Edna St. Vincent Millay, Henry David Thoreau and UC poetry professor Felicia Zamora hope to inspire you to take action and help slow the effects of global warming. Mezzo-soprano Quinn Patrick Ankrum, baritone Brandon Bell and pianists Elizabeth Avery and Kelly Kuo perform.


Brenda Portman

Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, “Long Live the King” | 2:30 p.m., St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption, 1140 Madison Ave., Covington. 859-431-6216. DETAILS: For the second day in a row, the KSO joins forces with organist Brenda Portman to perform works for organ and orchestra. The program includes Samuel Barber’s Toccata Festiva and Camille Saint-Saens’s Symphony No. 3 “Organ.” Portman is resident organist at Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church and is in frequent demand as a recitalist, teacher and composer. If you can’t attend today, take advantage of the earlier performance at Hyde Park Methodist – Saturday evening at 7:30 p.m.


Amina Edris and Pene Pati

Matinee Musicale, Amina Edris, soprano and Pene Pati, tenor | 3 p.m., Memorial Hall, 1225 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-977-8838. DETAILS: Tenor Pene Pati and soprano Amina Edris have risen quickly in the international opera scene. Samoan Pati has been hailed as “the most exceptional tenor discovery of the last decade” (Opera-Online). Edris has been praised for “lustrous tone” (Opera News). Her recent career highlights include the roles of Manon and Juliette at the Opera National de Paris. The program includes works by John Ireland, Benjamin Britten, William Bolcom and the Act 1 Duet from “Manon” by Jules Massenet.

Monday, April 22

Woodward Theater, “With Love and a Major Organ” | 7:30 p.m., 1404 Main St., Over-the-Rhine. 513-345-7981. DETAILS: Places everyone. In this 2023 Canadian fantasy/drama based on a stage play by Julia Lederer, an alternate reality now exists in which all human individuality and emotion has been suppressed by technological mediation. A computer application called Life-Zap makes all your decisions for you. The heart has become merely a physical object that can be removed. Yikes. Directed by Kim Albright and starring Anna Maguire and Hamza Haq. When you get home, make sure Life-Zap hasn’t been downloaded onto your machine.

Tuesday, April 23

Brian Cashwell

Christ Church Cathedral, Live @ Lunch | 12:10 p.m., 318 E. Fourth St., downtown. 513-621-1817. DETAILS: Jazz pianist Brian Cashwell accompanies your lunch today. Maintaining a busy teaching and performing schedule throughout the area, Cashwell is on the faculty at CCM and Miami University, teaching a broad array of jazz theory, improvisation and history classes. His trio performs regularly for public and private events. Bring your own lunch or buy one at the church.


The Faux Frenchmen

Blues Dance Cincinnati, The Faux Frenchmen | 7 p.m., The Carnegie Center of Columbia-Tusculum, 3738 Eastern Ave., East End. 513-473-5745. DETAILS: The Faux Frenchmen, a Cincinnati jazz staple, have played Hot Club-driven gypsy jazz around Cincinnati and all parts east since 2002. Hot Club is an interesting blend of traditional gypsy and European popular and classical music with American jazz tossed in. It’s often called “gypsy jazz.” Originally a public library, the Carnegie Center was renovated back in the 1990s into a popular community event space. Check it out.


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