There is something special about OTR’s Second Sunday on Main...
Second Sunday on Main (SSOM) is an eclectic neighborhood festival, presented by the Over-the-Rhine Chamber of Commerce. In its seventh season, SSOM runs June 10th thru October 14th (on the second Sunday of every month) in historic Over-the-Rhine. Each month has a specific theme with activities and vendors specific (but not limited to) said theme. September’s theme was ‘Dance on Main’ and I had the immense pleasure of emceeing the Dance on Main Festival the featured event of the afternoon. The experience was beautiful and bountiful; filled with memories of dancing in the street with everyone you meet.
Dance on Main is the brainchild of Frank Hibrandt, captain of PermaFringe Projects, Merchants of Main Street member, and well respected OTR resident. In its second year (it’s also my second year hosting), it brings together dance organizations from across the region resulting in a cornucopia of talent that is as diverse as the many flavors in Streetpops! With the blessing organizers, Frank galvanized performance artists and dancers alike to put on demonstrations that rivaled those of seasoned pro and there were many in attendance showcasing their talent. Set up alongside the ‘Bier Laufen’ aka beer cart races (sponsored by Hudepohl), Dance on Main allowed anyone willing to accept the challenge the opportunity to be educated as well as entertained. There were also organizations like the Ensemble Theatre and Chesapeake Popcorn set up as vendors sharing edibles as well as information and with two performance areas (one at Orchard & Main, the other at 14th& Main) and over 10 dance organizations represented; there was something for everyone. I’d like to share a few personal favorites…
Pones Inc. is a collective of ‘Artists as Activists’. They encourage participatory performances while focusing on creating Community. They have performed throughout the city and have been featured during not only Second Sunday but also opportunities like Fringe Festival & Arts on the Streets (during the World Choir Games). They demonstrated why they are considered ‘Dance Dignitaries’ when they performed a piece using a car as a partner. It was an ‘O-MAZING example of creativity partnered with ingenuity and the audience not only enjoyed the performance but was encouraged to join in.
Elementz Hip Hop Youth Center inspires/engages youth through innovative hip hop arts programs, performance, leadership development and community building. They do this through innovative programming; one of which is Kre8v, a dance team composed of some of Elementz’ most talented dancers. They performed during Dance on Main and inspired even the youngest neighbors to dabble in a little hip hop. Their energy was infectious; their discipline apparent.
Lastly, there was a special segment called “Dances for Main” which featured 3 well known/respected chorographers (Diane Germaine, Demetrius Klein, Ian Timothy Forsgren) who created pieces specifically for this festival. The pieces were not only powerful but poignant. They culminated the afternoon and contributed to the overall mood; festive.
If you missed this SSOM, don’t fear; the last one is in October and is almost here. To find out about the theme and other things, please go to their webpage: www.secondsundayonmain.org.
Big hugs and Nati love- Jai AllDay
We were proud to sponsor the ArtsAlive! Pavilion once again at this year's Midwest Black Family Reunion on August 18th. Our friend and guest blogger Jai AllDay helped keep the conversation going at the event and here shares her impressions.
As Cincinnati’s unofficial #1 fan, I am amazed and encouraged by the many new opportunities born from older, established activities. I was reminded of this philosophy recently when I had the immense pleasure of working with ArtsWave at their Arts Alive Pavilion during this year’s 24th Annual Midwest Black Family Reunion (MBFR). The MBFR is a weekend which brings consumers, corporations, communities and government agencies together to focus on the historic strengths and traditional values of the Black Family. Working as a community correspondent, my mission was to capture the real time experiences of those visiting. The opportunity not only reiterated the long legacy of both organizations but even more important, it reminded me that ‘partnering with a purpose’ can result in improvements not only seen but more importantly, felt/recognized.
This year’s event was condensed from its traditional 3 day long extravaganza filled with activities to a more manageable weekend experience revolving around specific subjects/themes. Many longtime attendees worried that the required cuts would result in a less than stellar year; thankfully that was not the case. As I interviewed guests, many commented on the fact that although condensed, this MBFR was different from past years because the rowdiness that had tarnished past MBFR’s was thankfully absent. A family-friendly feel replaced the fights and I believe the new format had a lot to do with it. ArtsWave (along with organizers) actively pursued ways to engage attendees by providing a variety of options when it came to ‘artistic education & entertainment’. At the Arts Alive Pavilion, established entities like the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, The Taft Museum of Art, and Cincinnati Black Theatre Company worked side by side with newer organizations like Millennium Robots, New American Art Gallery, and Midwest Latinos resulting in a well-rounded representation of the entire community. One thing was clear, whether you enjoy African drums, Shakespeare, or the Three Musketeers, this event had something for everyone.
Something I found particularly refreshing was the levels of representation found at the Arts Alive Pavilion. Many were from lesser known organizations and by working with ArtsWave were provided exposure to audiences who may not have seen them otherwise or vice versa. Working with people like Valentino Sweeten (of the Beat Lounge Beat Battle) and DJ Pillo (of Selectas Choice); ArtsWave showed that they were open to engaging not only folks familiar with their mission but those who had never worked with or even heard of the non-profit previously. Engaging areas of Art that were traditionally limited to the underground scene resulted in real community representation; whether African American or otherwise.
My favorite event was the ArtsWave’s World Biggest Family Dance, a way for families to connect while doing the two-step; ‘O’-MAZING!!!
To me, a community is only as strong as its attempts at unity; I am proud to say Cincinnati is not only experiencing a renaissance in the artistic sense but also contributing to our future using a little common sense and I am ‘O’ so grateful to be a witness. Big hugs and ‘Catch the Wave’ love! -- Jai AllDay
Cincinnati, OH – August 13, 2012 – ArtsWave presents a free performance of Cincinnati Shakespeare Company’s Shakespeare in the Park production of The Tempest in Washington Park on Sunday, September 9th at 7:00 p.m. Shakespeare’s romantic comedy of magic and monsters comes alive through unique interactive elements that allow the audience to help create part of the show. The family-friendly performance is sponsored by ArtsWave, in partnership with Cincinnati Shakespeare Company (CSC) and the Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation (3CDC).
“ArtsWave is thrilled to sponsor this special performance in Washington Park,” said Rebecca Bromels, ArtsWave's Director of Communications. “Free arts events like Shakespeare in the Park bring families and neighbors together, and for this performance, they actually help create the show.” The audience will be invited to help collectively create special effects during the show. No special skills or preparation is required to participate. Kids can enjoy face-painting and art-making starting at 6:00 p.m.
“Shakespeare’s Tempest features stormy seas, mischievous spirits, and surprising transformations,” notes CSC Producing Artistic Director Brian Phillips. “We’re excited that after nine years of presenting Shakespeare in the Park, we’re able to engage the audience in this new way and make them part of the show.” By waving hundreds of yards of fabric to make a storm at sea, creating a host of invisible buzzing and rattling spirits with noisemakers, and turning the park’s civic lawn into a fairy-land of lit cell-phones, audience members will help transform Washington Park into the magical world of the play.
Newly-renovated Washington Park opened to the public on Friday, June 28th welcoming hundreds of new and old visitors to this historic green space in Over-the-Rhine. The park has since featured performances by local musicians and World Choir Games participants as well as a unique collaborative performance by the Cincinnati Ballet, Opera, May Festival and Symphony Orchestra.
The Tempest is directed by CSC ensemble member Billy Chace and features ensemble members Charlie Cromer, Travis Emery, Jessie Wray Goodman, Sam Rabinovitz, Maggie Lou Rader & Zach Schute. Featuring Shakespeare’s original text, The Tempest begins when the banished duke and magician Prospero conjures a terrible storm to bring his enemies to the island where he lives with his daughter Miranda. The shipwreck throws together lovers, fools, monsters, and scoundrels in this classic and fun romance.
Admission to Shakespeare in the Park is free and open to the public. Audiences are strongly encouraged to arrive early to get the best seats. Picnics and well-behaved pets are welcome. Visit Washington Park’s website for a complete list of park rules and information on parking at www.washingtonpark.org. For additional information on Shakespeare in the Park or interviews with director or cast, contact CSC Director of Communications Jeanna Vella at Jeanna.email@example.com.
Family Sing-Along and Free Choral Concert featuring the May Festival Chorus in Pleasant Ridge
CINCINNATI (April 2, 2012) – ArtsWave announces a bonus Macy’s Arts Sampler event, The Great Sampler Sing-Along, featuring the Cincinnati May Festival Chorus on Saturday, April 21st at Pleasant Ridge Presbyterian Church. Starting with a family-friendly sing-along and community meal at Noon, the free event includes a joint choral concert highlighting the long history of choral singing in Cincinnati. Six local choirs will perform, representing the many different cultures and communities that make our community vibrant through song. This special Sampler event is generously sponsored by Macy’s, and is the final Macy’s Arts Sampler event of the year.
Hosted by Pleasant Ridge Presbyterian Church, located at 5950 Montgomery Rd., the afternoon starts in the fellowship hall with a modern spin on the traditional German Saengerfests popular in Cincinnati at the turn of the 20th century. The day combines American foods with German heritage and a wide variety of world music. The afternoon will promote the history of Cincinnati’s choral groups, and will provide a “sneak peek” of the musical styles featured during Cincinnati’s May Festival and the World Choir Games.
“We are so delighted to be able to offer this additional free arts event that shines a spotlight on our region’s incredible choral groups,” says Rebecca Bromels, ArtsWave’s Director of Communications. “This event allows these choral groups to showcase their talent, and gives families and friends a chance to sing and eat together.”
Families, friends and neighbors are invited to share hot dogs, root beer, and snacks while singing along to familiar tunes like “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”, “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad”, and more. After lunch guests are invited to enjoy the choral concert in the church sanctuary.
The choral concert will include six choirs representing a variety of musical backgrounds and styles. The Root Beer Stand of Sharonville, OH has generously provided root beer, and German baked goods will be provided by Busken Bakery. Vegetarian options will be available.
12 p.m.: Sampler Sing-Along and Meal
1:30 p.m.: Choral concert
Choral Concert Groups:
Pleasant Ridge Presbyterian Church Choir
Greater Cincinnati Indian Community Choir
Cincinnati Men’s Chorus
Cincinnati Young Professional’s Choral Collective (YPCC),
Cincinnati May Festival Youth Chorus
Cincinnati May Festival Chorus
The LAST Macy's Arts Sampler day of 2012 is almost upon us!
The first two Arts Sampler days have been great -thousands of people from around the region met up to experience free art right in their backyard. Saturday, March 10 promises to be loads of fun. Snag a schedule or download the Sampler Mobile App for free on your smart phone.
Downtown Cincinnati - Hands-On Arts and Performances for Families
Families can easily spend the entire day Downtown exploring the arts. Get inspired at the Taft Museum of Art with a day celebrating great African American artists in our community. The line-up includes a one-man show about Martin Luther King, jr., “Martin’s Dream” by Deondra Means; gospel and soul music by the incredible Fo Mo Brothers; see the current exhibit of prints by Romare Bearden and try your hand at making a collage; then end the day with music by Tracy Walker, one of the Taft Robert S. Duncanson Artists in Residence for 2012.
On the top floor of the Contemporary Arts Center, The UnMuseum will have family art and craft activities starting at 1 p.m. The Main Library on Vine Street will host silhouette artist Pattie Purnell and the Blue Chip Jazz Band at Noon.
Families with younger children will appreciate the combination of crafts and interactive theatre at Learning Through Art’s Books Alive! program starting at 11 a.m, and the Ballet Theatre Midwest and My Nose Turns Red Youth Circus performances at Emanuel Community Center at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Museums, Murals, and Music for Adults
Head over to the Contemporary Arts Center and check out their new exhibit, Spectacle: The Music Video, an incredible exploration of the art and history of music videos. At 3:00 p.m., take a guided tour that shows you how to look at things in a whole new way with the UnProfessional Development workshop.
ArtWorks is offering two one-hour guided bus tours to visit some of its incredible Downtown murals, at 11 a.m. and 12:30 a.m. Appropriate for all ages. You can also take a Highlights of the Taft guided tour at the Taft Museum at 1:30 p.m.
Catch some great singer/songwriters including acoustic folk/roots/blues musician John Ford and guitarist Dave Hawkins and fiddler Peg Buchanan at the CAC starting at 12:30; and Tracy Walker at the Taft Museum at 3:30 p.m.
For Families on the Move
Do your kids need to get their wiggles out? Try a taste of West African drumming and dancing at the Carl Lindner YMCA with the African-American Drum and Dance Ensemble at 12:30 p.m.—a great opportunity to get the whole family up on their feet and moving to the beat.
Then, head for the Cincinnati Ballet for a whole afternoon of moving and grooving from ballet to belly-dancing and Chinese martial to Bollywood-style Indian dance. Starting at Noon, the line-up includes Cincinnati Ballet, the CCM Preparatory Dance Department, Anaya Gypsy Dance, Blue Ash Shaolin Do, and Experience India.
If your family includes grandparents, take everyone to The Grove at Springfield Township. They’ve got a full afternoon of great American music ranging from barbershop with the Southern Gateway Chorus to roots band Wild Carrot to country-western swing with Laura Hazelbaker & the BuckeyeRoos, plus a chance to learn the lindy-hop with the Living History Dance School.
Clifton Cultural Arts Center has American and Celtic music starting at Noon with Raison d’Etre, Clark and Jones, and the Cincinnati Caledonian Pipes and Drums.
Middletown Arts Center hosts the Madcap Puppets’ production of “Jack and the Gentle Giant” at 12:30 p.m. Children are invited to stay afterwards for a puppet-making workshop with the performers.