Most people don't go to a restaurant to sing. But that's not true at Jolly's American Beer Bar. Here, diners sway and croon at their tables as two pianists at adjacent baby grands animatedly play popular tunes from a range of eras. The dueling pianos, an entertainment form hailing from the 1930s and a fixture at this University City establishment, imbues the space with an ecstatic and raucous energy. The professional ivory ticklers' hands cascade across the keys, covering songs from icons such as Billy Joel, Elvis Presley, and Lady Gaga. In between melodies, the musicians treat the audience to bits of ribald humor and plates of deep-fried quarter notes.
In the midst of the crowd sing-alongs, patrons can sip from a cache of American craft beers from breweries such as Russian River, Dogfish Head, and Rogue or sup on handmade morsels in the form of thai chicken wings or a Carolina–style barbecue pulled-pork sandwich.
As a rising strummer who opened her voice up at the age of eight, Carlile started her career as a backup for an Elvis impersonator before eventually performing alongside the Indigo Girls, Chris Isaak, Tori Amos, and Shawn Colvin. This concert positions the genre-jumping songstress alongside the most epic of backing bands, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Resistant to labels, Carlile's jams have been called country, folk, pop, and all the blended permutations in between. On June 30, she'll likely be playing a number of selections from her recent third album, Give Up the Ghost, which debuted at number 26 on the Billboard 200.
Since 1913, the Erie Philharmonic has been on a melody-driven mission to enrich its surrounding communities with live concerts and stirring performances. Tchaikovsky's symphony begins by spotlighting one of America's most successful composers, Christopher Theofanidis, as he conducts "Rainbow Body," an evocative movement inspired by medieval mystic Hildegard of Bingen and her propensity to lead chants at high-school football games. Next, guitarist Ana Vidovic continues her drag race to the top of the classical genre by cramming the swaying, syncopated rhythms of a Spanish concerto into open ears. Pathétique closes the evening with a spirited rendition of Tchaikovsky's final symphonic piece. Fueled by the juxtaposition of varying emotions, Pathétique tows listeners to the top of triumphant crests, only to yank them back into the darkened valleys of personal upheaval and frustration over uncertain weather forecasts.
The Miller Center for the Arts at Reading Area Community College is committed to promoting artistic growth throughout the community through theatrically diverse and engaging performances. The Cashore Marionettes' Life in Motion studies the poignancy of everyday existence in moving vignettes set to classical compositions. Lifelike marionettes evoke the powerful emotions of momentous human events such as birth and death, as well as the beauty in mundane activities such as kite-flying, doing homework, or flying a kite made out of homework. Joseph Cashore has been designing and performing with his own marionette creations for more than three decades.
Since opening with a Frank Sinatra performance in 1990, the stadium now known as Times Union Center has seen more than 15 million guests pass through its turnstiles. That’s only slightly smaller than the population of the Netherlands and roughly equal to the number of people worldwide who enjoy candy corn. Besides attracting such entertainment titans as the Rolling Stones, U2, Disney’s “On Ice” series, and the Harlem Globetrotters, the multifunction arena is also home to the AHL’s Albany Devils and college basketball’s Siena Saints.
Founded in hopes of bringing about a revival of the American brass band, River City Brass aims to share the uniquely joyous art form with audiences across Pennsylvania. And for the past 30-odd years, the group has done just that. River City Brass’s 28-piece ensemble—some of whom have been members since the early ’80s—play more than 50 concerts annually. Their programs span continents and centuries, with every performance bringing a new showcase of styles. Modern music, classical pieces, big-band jazz, and show tunes have all passed through RCB’s bright cornets, chortling tubas, and crisp percussion.