A soulful songstress that dabbles in a mishmash of classic American musical genres, Joan Osborne blipped onto the nation's radar more than 15 years ago with the hit "One of Us" and remains steadfast well into the millennium. Immerse inner ears in an intimate acoustic set featuring Joan's pianist pal Keith Cotton and special guest Jeffry Braun. For this concert, The Ridgefield Playhouse will feature a complimentary preshow hors d'oeuvres spread from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. and a full bar stocked with buyable libations. Groups should call ahead to reserve blocks of seats.
Led by globetrotting maestro Eckart Preu, the Stamford Symphony satiates aural appetites with beautiful interpretations of classic and modern pieces. The program will kick off with Leroy Anderson's chart-topping 1951 melody "Blue Tango," which beguiles eardrums with midcentury charm and quarter notes bearing roses in their teeth. Next, the symphony treats audiences to "Last Round," written by contemporary Argentinean composer Osvaldo Golijov to commemorate the death of celebrated tango composer Astor Piazzolla. The soprano saxophone concerto of Pulitzer Prize–winning composer Jennifer Higdon allows the bluesy sax to moodily soar under the supporting harmonies of a full orchestra. Preu tops off the evening with Beethoven's celebrated Symphony no. 6, Pastoral, a five-act tone poem that conjures up images of a day in the country without the hassle of traveling or milking a cow in your living room.
Cultural Arts Playhouse has been fostering the development of up-and-coming actors for more than 15 years. At its Musical Theatre and Acting Academy, students from 1st–12th grade hone their on-stage skills by taking classes on singing, acting, and improvisation under the tutelage of an experienced teacher. Kids get to show off these skills in full theatrical productions, with main-stage shows opening up auditions to the entire community so people can see their neighbors' acting chops and dusted-off fake skulls. Cultural Arts Playhouse alumni have found success in New York and throughout the country, appearing in HBO's The Sopranos, and such Broadway productions as Les Miserables and Aladdin.
A three-day lineup stocked with jazz legends and emerging talents blasts through more time signatures than a clock’s checkbook to usher in the 16th incarnation of the Litchfield Jazz Festival. The Springs Center stage kicks off Friday with genre luminaries The Clayton Brothers, whose silky sounds light a fire under the crowd that fellow Grammy nominees Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue stoke with brassy flares. Saturday hosts a veritable who’s-who of mind-blowing musicians with NEA Jazz Master grant winner Roy Haynes Fountain of Youth Band blasting buttery sounds after a Ray Charles tribute featuring Davell Crawford belts harmonies more memorable than “Happy Birthday” sung in Klingon. A collection of performers worthy of a Gatsbyan soiree closes out the festival on Sunday, with a hip-swinging finale from Jimmy Heath.