Arts and Entertainment

BGSU moves into the holiday spirit with ArtsX

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Bowling Green State University’s pre-holiday celebration of the arts will highlight movement Dec. 1 as Verb Ballets, a Cleveland-based contemporary ballet company, takes the stage. Their bold artistry, unique styles and technical excellence have captivated audiences of all ages. The company’s two performances, at 5:30 and 7 p.m. in the Thomas B. and Kathleen M. Donnell Theatre in The Wolfe Center for the Arts, are just two ArtsX activities scheduled from 5 to 9 p.m. The 2018 ArtsX, with a theme of “Let the Arts Move You,” will also showcase musical, theatrical and dance performances; exhibits and demonstrations; hands-on activities; and art sales for holiday shoppers looking for unique, handmade gifts. A tentative schedule is available at

Toledo Symphony begins run of holiday programs

From  TOLEDO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA The Toledo Symphony Orchestra celebrates this holiday season with a variety of festive concerts and special events across Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan. From Christmas at the Peristyle and Handel’s Messiah to Toledo Ballet’s 78th Annual Nutcracker, these programs feature a collection of seasonal classics and traditional favorites for all ages. The TSO has a long history of sharing symphonic music outside of its primary locations. Annually, the TSO reaches more than 11,000 individuals at neighborhood churches, schools, performing arts centers, and various community venues. These unique concerts expand the accessibility to arts programming and build lasting relationships with communities throughout the region. “The musicians and production crew of the Toledo Symphony are preparing for the ‘most wonderful time of the year!’” says Rachel Zeithamel, Director of Education & Community Engagement for the Toledo Symphony. “We will perform twenty-five concerts in twenty five days at twenty-one different venues. It is a lot of work but it is well worth the effort. The TSO is able to help communities, families, and organizations celebrate this special time of year. Chances are high that we will be performing at location near you. I hope you will join us and make your own memories!” HOLIDAY PERFORMANCES: November 28, 2018 – St. Joseph Catholic Church (Sylvania, OH) November 29, 2018 – Grace Lutheran Church (Fremont, OH) November 30, 2018 – Clyde High School (Clyde, OH) December 1, 2018 – Christmas at the Peristyle (Toledo, OH) December 2, 2018 – Handel’s Messiah (Toledo, OH) December 4, 2018 – Westgate Chapel (Toledo, OH) December 5, 2018 – Clay High School (Oregon, OH) December 6, 2018 – St. Patrick Catholic Church (Bryan, OH) December 8, 2018 – Toledo Ballet’s 78th Annual Nutcracker (Toledo, OH) December 9, 2018 – Toledo Ballet’s 78th Annual Nutcracker (Toledo, OH) December 11, 2018 – St. Joseph Catholic Church (Maumee, OH) December 12, 2018 – St. Paul’s Lutheran Church (Napoleon, OH) December 13, 2018 – First Lutheran Church (Tiffin, OH) December 14, 2018 – St. Luke’s Lutheran Church (Temperance, MI) December 15, 2018 – First Congregational Church (Toledo, OH) December 16, 2018 – All Saints Catholic Church (Rossford, OH) “As the Toledo Symphony marks its 75th anniversary, we cherish our role as ‘Toledo’s Symphony,’” says Zak Vassar, President & CEO of the Toledo Symphony. “For these 75 years, we have shared the joy of music across our region—from classrooms and community centers to churches and concert halls. It is especially meaningful to do…

Winners selected in Artists 4 Animals exhibit

From BOWLING GREEN ARTS COUNCIL The Bowling Green Arts Council has announced the prize winning art in the Artists 4 Animals 5 now on exhibit at the Four Corners Center, 130 S. Main Street, Thirty-six artists of all ages, kindergarten through adult contributed the exhibit. Winners are: Kindergarten through  fourth Grade: Kiera Novinsky, first, Spider Web; Alyssa Lenix, second, Bird in the Clouds; Eva Olivarez, third, Blue Dog with Color; and Griffin Fulford and Madelaine McAfee, honorable mention. Fifth through eighth grade: Quentin Trevino, first, Begging; Ty Strickland, second, Alone in the Woods; Ian Jones, third, Rabbit in Daisy Field; and Penelope Giammarco, Tyler Smith; Serenity Shimatzki, Logan Campbell, and Jansen DeMond, honorable mention. High school: Sydney Henninger, first, Buddy Boy;  2nd Olivia Sexton, second, Wisdom in the Darkness, and Marisa Gilbert, Dog News. Adults: Candace J. Hardy, first, Horse’s Eye; Derek Frey, second, Nelson; Jean Gidich-Holbrook, third, Pretty Girl, and Sarah Gorges, honorable mention, Winter. The show continues through Wednesday, Nov. 28.

Students of children’s literature creating books of their own

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The spirit of Dr. Seuss and other masters of the picture book was alive in the Bowling Green State University’s Technology and Resource Center in the Education Building. The students in the Literature for Young Children course taught by Elizabeth Zemanski and Amanda Rzicznek were busy writing, cutting, and drawing as they created their own picture books. They draw inspiration from the needs of the children they’ll be teaching, from their own favorite books, and from a talk given by published children’s author Lindsay Ward. The goal is to give them insight into the way picture books come to be. Their work will be exhibited for all to see at the Picture Book Showcase Thursday, Nov. 29 from 5:30-7 p.m. in the Pallister Room of the Jerome Library. Samantha Aukerman, an early childhood major, was a little nervous about the prospect of having her work on display. Still the project was fun, she said. Her book is about a shy cactus’ efforts to find a friend. Because of the cactus’ limited mobility, that’s difficult, until he meets a hedgehog. All this stems from the landscape of Aukerman’s life. She has cacti in her room, and her roommate collects stuffed hedgehogs. That was one of the lessons students took away from a talk in October from  Ward. She spoke about all the odd places she found inspiration for her books. Her series on the neurotic dinosaur named Dexter came from her husband’s discovery of a toy dinosaur abandoned in a doctor’s office. In her talk Ward quipped that speaking to the college students was a rare treat. She usually didn’t speak to audiences who were her size and who could read their own books. Aukerman is also drawing Ward’s attention to material. Ward, who works in cut paper, talked about collecting various types paper. For “Please Bring Balloons” she used vintage paper that had discolored around the edges because of oxidation  to create the landscape of New York City. Aukerman is using sponged paints for her minor characters and the landscape, but is using cut paper for the cactus, Calvin, and his hedgehog friend. The art is in service of her message, Aukerman said. “What people say about you really changes how you think about yourself,” she said. That sense of self-image is not talked about, she said. And it should be.  Rebecca Armstrong, also…

BG school orchestras perform Trans Siberian Orchestra music at holiday concert

From BOWLING GREEN HIGH SCHOOL ORCHESTRA The Bowling Green High School Orchestra and Bowling Green 8th Grade Orchestra will present their Holiday Concert on Thursday, Nov. 29 at 7 p.m. at the Bowling Green Schools Performing Arts Center. This concert has become a holiday tradition for the Bowling Green community and features lighting effects designed by Drake Doren which are performed to music of the Trans Siberian Orchestra.   The Trans Siberian Orchestra titles to be performed combined BGHS High School Orchestras are “Christmas Eve Sarejevo 12/24,” “Faith Noel,” “Wizards in Winter” and “First Snow”. In addition to the Trans Siberian Orchestra  selections noted, The 8th Grade orchestra will perform a medley of holiday tunes titled “Songs of Christmas” along with music from Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 and “Dance of the Tumblers” by Rimsky-Korsakov. The BGHS Concert orchestra will perform Divertimento No.2 by Mozart and an arrangement of “Jingle Bells” called “Jingle Jazz.” Finally, the BGHS Chamber orchestra will perform the”Overture to the Thieving Magpie” by Rossini and a very touching piece titled “A Solitary Wish” by Brian Balmages. “A Solitary Wish” is piece which tells a story of the holiday season through the eyes of a homeless person.  This piece will be performed with a special mime presentation from members of the BGHS Drama Club. A free will offering will be taken after to concert to cover the expenses of the production.

78th Nutcracker marks new alliance between Toledo Ballet and symphony

From TOLEDO BALLET  On Tuesday, September 18, 2018, the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and Toledo Ballet announced plans to merge the area’s oldest performing arts institutions forming the Toledo Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA). This year, the two organizations will work closer than ever before in Toledo Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker, its 78th annual presentation of Tchaikovsky’s beloved masterpiece, and the first as a newly combined organization. “It was Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker that originally brought together Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony,” says Zak Vassar, President & CEO of the Toledo Symphony. “This year, more than others, there’s something symbolic about joining forces with our new siblings at Toledo Ballet. We all want to present one of the best Nutcrackers in our joined history. There’s just such a sense of excitement in the air!” TAPA is a partnership rooted in history, as Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony have  collaborated artistically on The Nutcracker since the late 1940s. Toledo Ballet will present The Nutcracker with the full Toledo Symphony in the orchestra pit on December 8-9, 2018. This makes Toledo Ballet’s presentation of The Nutcracker the only local production to include a full orchestra of professional musicians. “This year’s Nutcracker is more exciting than ever because of the merging of Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony Orchestra,” says Lisa Mayer-Lang, Artistic Director for Toledo Ballet.” “This historic merger has both organizations, as well as the Toledo community buzzing with excitement. Our dancers are thrilled that they will be dancing again to the live music of the Symphony in a heightened sense of unity.” Toledo Ballet is proud to announce Chris Caputo (Caputo & Associates), Jay Berschback (WTVG13 Weatherman), Pat Bowe (President & CEO, The Andersons), and Zak Vassar (President & CEO, Toledo Symphony Orchestra) as Mother Gingers for this season’s 78th annual production of The Nutcracker. In Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker, appearance of Mother Ginger in Act Two brings a light-hearted distraction from the more serious roles in the ballet. Best recognized by her enormous hoop skirt from which her Gingersnap children spill out at the beginning of their dance, Mother Ginger’s antics delight audiences with equal part hilarity and cute-factor from the children. The role of Mother Ginger is a long-standing coveted comic role for Toledo leaders.

Unitarian Universalists celebrate the art of moral revival

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Maumee Valley Unitarian Universalist Congregation wants to raise money for and awareness of the Poor People’s Campaign. And they want to have fun doing it. On Sunday, Nov. 18 the congregation will hold an art-in from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. Rev. Lynn Kerr said that the Unitarian Universalist Justice Ohio has been working with the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival. That included helping people register to vote and then helping them get to the polls. “Though obviously we’re not encouraging them to vote any particular way,” she said. The proceeds from the art-in will be shared with the Poor People’s Campaign and the congregation. The art-in itself has two elements. Art supplies are being donated by local artists and businesses and will be sold at low prices so people can get the art supplies they want.  “The second thing is we have local artists who are sharing their talents where someone can come in do DYI project. But the artists will be there to show them how to do those projects,” she said. The projects include jewelry making, crocheting, holiday ornaments, and origami. Kerr will be showing how to make ornaments out of birch bark. “They’ll be doing cool things that don’t take a terribly long time to do,” she said. That way people will be able to complete several over the course of the afternoon. Food will be available including items from the Share Our Grounds cafe in Whitehouse. Poor People’s campaign is calling for a moral revival. “We’re just adding art to it to raise awareness.  What’s lacking in the country is we need to think about what’s a compassionate act,” Kerr said.  “What we’re missing right now is compassion through moral action.” During the congregation’s 11 a.m. service Melissa Jeter, who is studying to be a lay minister and often speaks on social issues, will give the sermon. Jeter said that the Poor People’s Campaign is a continuation of the work Martin Luther King Jr. was pursuing in the years before his assassination. So much of what she sees, from the Flint water crisis to concerns about violence in schools, goes against King’s belief in the need to build a beloved community. This new call for a moral revival is not a commemoration of the effort started by King. “This is to continue the work that’s…

‘Little Shop of Horrors’ serves up large helping of musical comedy

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News A house plant. Not the most original present. Unless as is the case with the newest gift from the Bowing Green State University Department of Theatre the plant happens to be the flesh eating kind and expresses its appetite in such soulful dulcet tones. “Little House of Horrors” opens tonight (Thursday, Nov. 15) at 8 p.m. and continues  with shows Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Donnell Theatre in the Wolfe Center for the Arts on campus. Click for tickets. Howard Ashman and Alan Menken, known for their later work on Disney musical animated films, turned a grade B horror film into a delightful romp on Skid Row with tuneful, Motown inspired melodies and a story that revels in its campy roots. This is a love story, and a weird celebration of neighborhood. “Downtown (Skid Row)” paints the scene, a place people want to flee, yet there’s a cheerfulness to the despair.  That neighborhood spirit is embodied by the three urchins, essentially a girl group from the 1960s. They are one of the show’s most inspired touches. Chiffon (Zayion Hyman), Crystal (Sherry White), and Ronnette (Gabriyel Thomas) are always on hand, a soulful Greek chorus, belting out reflections and advice, all in robust harmony and rousing rhythm. They are played as ageless sprites, always observing, and amused, but never intervening. Seymour (played by Michael Cuschieri at the dress rehearsal I saw and on Thursday and Saturday, and played by Noah Estep on Friday and Sunday) is a child of Skid Row, a hopeless kind of nerd. An orphan he was taken in by Mushnik (Isaac Batty) who owns a flower shop. As Seymour recounts he has lived in the shop since he was a child, sleeping under a counter and eating scraps. Even God isn’t sure what to make of him. But he loves plants and finds a peculiar species he can’t identify and brings it to the shop to nurture. He names it Audrey II after the shop’s clerk Audrey (Anna Randazzo) whom he has a crush on.  Audrey slut-shames herself and thinks all she deserves for a boyfriend is the sadistic dentist Orin (Noah Froelich). Orin’s treatment of Audrey is hard to stomach even in a comedy.  He’s a one-dimensional villian, but packed with all the minerals and vitamins a carnivorous plant needs….

Mosaics to be removed later this month & returned by BGSU to Turkey

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Last May, Bowling Green State University announced that it had reached an agreement to return 12 pieces of ancient mosaics in the University’s art collection, on display in The Wolfe Center for the Arts, to the Republic of Turkey. They will be formally returned to a Turkish delegation next week, removed, and packed for shipping. The University invites the community to view the collection before its return. The mosaics are on display outside the Eva Marie Saint Theatre at the BGSU Wolfe Center for the Arts. They may be viewed from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on: Thursday, Nov. 15 Friday, Nov. 16 Monday, Nov. 19 Editor’s note: At the time of the announcement of the return, the Turkish  government said it would provide replicas to replace the originals. (See related story.)  

Composer Sam Adler experienced Kristallnact as child, commemorates it in cantata to be performed Sunday

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News In the early morning hours of Nov. 11, 1938 Samuel Adler’s family heard an explosion nearby their home in Mannheim, Germany. The 10-year-old later learned that it was the chapel at the Jewish Cemetery being bombed. This was the night that would come to be known as Kristallnacht — the night of broken glass, when the Nazis launched their full scale their persecution of Jews, moving beyond harassment to state violence. Adler’s father, Hugo Adler, a noted cantor, was caught up in the arrests, but released.  He tried to leave the country but couldn’t. A few days after Kristallnacht he and his son went to the central synagogue, which had been destroyed, where they climbed to the loft to collect and rescue as many of the music books, which contained the musical legacy of the congregation. Nazis moved around below where the two worked. Later the family was able to flee Germany “on the last train,” Adler remembers. “We were scared to death until we left for America.” A half century after those traumatic events, Adler, now an internationally renowned composer, commemorated Kristallnacht in “Stars in the Dust” with a libretto by the late Samuel Rosenbaum, one of the chief cantors in conservative Judaism. To commemorate the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht, “Stars in the Dust” will be performed Sunday, Nov. 18 at 4 p.m., at Temple Shomer Emunim, 6453 Sylvania Ave, Sylvania. The performance will feature Cantor Andrea Rae Markowicz, soloists Christopher Scholl, tenor, and Lance Ashmore, baritone, from Bowling Green State University as well as the university’s Collegiate Chorale, conducted by Richard Schnipke, and orchestra, conducted by Emily Freeman Brown, Adler’s wife. The award-winning actress and singer Michelle Azar, the composer’s niece, will narrate.  Adler, who is retired from the faculties of the Eastman School of Music and the Juilliard School, now lives in Perrysburg. The libretto, Adler said, chronicles what happened drawing on contemporary accounts, including that  of a cantor who sang Kaddish, the traditional prayer of mourning, after seeing the damage wrought on his community. “It ends in conviction that it must never happen again,” Adler said.  But given anti-Semitism dates back 2000 years, vigilance will always be necessary. “We have to work at it so it doesn’t happen,” the composer said. Adler, who turned 90 in March, is in the midst of a year-long celebration. He and Brown have just…

Class offers chance to dance through Parkinson’s disease

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The dancers in Tammy Starr’s class at The Beat Dance Company studio are getting a step up on their struggles with Parkinson’s Disease and other related neurological diseases. Moving and exercising are widely viewed as beneficial in forestalling the onset of symptoms.  So this is serious business. It’s also fun. Starr teaches the weekly one-hour classes on Sunday. This class, offered through the Wood County Committee on Aging, runs through Dec. 9, and another starts in January. It will meet the second and fourth Sundays of the month at the Beat studio, which provides the space for free. Spouses are welcomed to participate.  Contact the Wood County Committee on Aging for details. Anyone is welcomed to stop by to get an introduction in what the classes offers. Starr is a trained dancer who has performed and taught. She’s also a physical therapist, a profession she took up after years as a dancer and choreographer. “These days I really enjoy working with that older adult population,” she said. She also works through the committee on aging with people with dementia. Starr’s philosophy was expressed by a Salt Lake City troupe she danced with:  “Dance is for everybody.” As a modern dancer, she said: “I look at every movement and see dance. … Being a dancer I have something to offer especially in group setting. I’m used to teaching a group.” When she was studying physical therapy at the University of Toledo she learned about the Lee Silverman Voice Treatment, LSVT, which was originally designed as speech therapy, before being applied to movement. When Starr read about this approach, she realized: “This sounds like dance to me.” People with Parkinson’s make small, rigid movements, and have balance issues. “In dance we work on moving big and fluidly. We certainly work on balance.” Describing the class, she said: “It’s an opportunity to move in an environment where they feel supported and safe with people who are dealing with the same things. It’s a positive experience with movement because they’re fighting that all day.” It’s fun, said Pat Smith, of Wayne, one of the participants. She also participates in the Delay the Disease sessions at the senior center.  That’s been helpful, but the Dancing with Parkinson’s is “so different. It’s much more fun.” Smith has taken dance lessons in the past and appreciates Starr’s approach. “She’s a wonderful…

Black Swamp Players casting ‘The Music Man’

From BLACK SWAMP PLAYERS The Black Swamp Players will hold auditions for the second production of its fifty-first season, “The Music Man,” during the week of Nov. 18. Open auditions for the production will be held on the following dates: Sunday, Nov.  18 and Monday, Nov. 19. Audition times for both dates will run from 6:30 until 9 p.m.. The script calls for a large cast of both children and adults of various ages. All auditions will be held at the First United Methodist Church on East Wooster Street in Bowling Green. Those who want to audition should prepare 16 bars of a Broadway showtune, and should bring copies of their music to the audition. Additionally, individuals who audition will be asked to cold read from the script and learn some dance/movement sequences. All who are interested in auditioning should dress comfortably for the audition. “The Music Man” follows fast-talking traveling salesman, Harold Hill, as he cons the people of River City, Iowa, into buying instruments and uniforms for a boys’ band that he vows to organize–this, despite the fact that he doesn’t know a trombone from a treble clef. Hill’s plans to skip town with the cash are foiled when he falls for Marian, the librarian, who transforms him into a respectable citizen by curtain’s fall. Written by Meredith Willson and Franklin Lacey, “The Music Man”  has been entertaining audiences since 1957, when it premiered on Broadway. The musical earned eight Tony-award nominations in 1958 and went on to win six Tonys, including nods for Best Musical, Best Performance by a Leading Actor, and Best Performance by a Leading Actress. The Black Swamp Players production of “The Music Man” will be directed by Amy Spaulding-Heuring. “The Music Man” will open on Friday, Feb. 16 15 at 7:30 p.m. Additional performance dates include: Saturday, Feb. 16 at 7:30 p.m.; Sunday, February 17 at 2 p.m.; Friday, Feb. 16 22 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 16 23 at 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, Feb. 16 24 at 2 p.m.. All performances will take place at the First United Methodist Church, Bowling Green. Tickets for all performances are $15/adults, $12/seniors and students. All tickets can be purchased on the organization’s website and at the door on the day of the performance. “The Music Man” is the second of three productions to be mounted by The Black Swamp Players for its 2018-2019 season. The Players will close…

BG Holiday Parade to step off early

From BOWLING GREEN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE The start of the holiday season in Bowling Green is official when the Community Holiday Parade makes its way down Main Street through the historic Downtown on Saturday, Nov. 17.  The tradition continues and is especially exciting with WTOL broadcasting live through the support of our Presenting Sponsors; Julie’s Dance Studio, Rosenboom Custom Crafted Cylinders, Regel Beloit and the City of Bowling Green. This parade is billed as the largest holiday parade in Northwest Ohio and those that attend can look forward to seeing floats, marching bands, baton twirlers, antique tractors, dancers and so much more.  The parade will be emceed by Jerry Anderson and Jordan Strack and the WTOL Defender vehicle will be a part of the parade.  We have worked really closely with WTOL members to make sure we bring excellent broadcast of this parade to those that can’t be here.  This will be a three hour broadcast starting at 9 am with a listing of all the area holiday activities.  At 10 am the commercial free coverage of the entire parade will start and will conclude at noon. Because of this live broadcast we would like everyone to be aware that the parade will step off at 9:50 am to provide time for the first units to make their way to the four corners close to the start of the 10 am broadcast. This year the parade is chaired by Greg Esposito, InTech IT Solutions.  Greg is the At-Large representative of the Chamber of Commerce Executive Board.  Project Team members for the parade help in many capacities and the chamber can’t thank them enough for the roughly seven months they have been working on the parade.  These team members include:  Jerid Friar, Melinda Kale, Julie Setzer, Brian Paskvan, Wendy Headley, Marissa Muniz, Wendy Chambers, Pam Fahle, Jacquelyn Gaines, Greg Kegler, Atonn Smeltzer and Mary Hinkelman. Judges for this year’s parade are Earlene Kilpatrick, Francis Scruci and Abby Paskvan.  They will be looking for units that have adhered to the theme of the parade, creativity, performance and other features that make their appearance in the parade exceptional.

Toledo Symphony & youth orchestra to join forces in concert commemorating the end of WWI

From  TOLEDO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA On Friday, November 16 and Saturday, November 17,  at 8 P.M. at the Toledo Museum of Art’s Peristyle Theater, the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) joins Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestra (TSYO) members on stage in a massive orchestra to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, paying tribute to the courageous men and women who served their country and the rest of the world. “This concert brings together heroic themes and programmatic music about courage and triumph,” says TSO President & CEO, Zak Vassar. “As we celebrate our 100th Veteran’s Day, it’s important to remember the stories of those who fought and defended our nation. I think this music does that in a really beautiful and appropriate way.” The program on Friday and Saturday evening features great American favorites—including Battle Hymn of the Republic, John Williams’ Summon the Heroes, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich’s Symbolon, and Richard Strauss’ masterpiece, Ein Heldenleben (“A Hero’s Life”). Written in 1898, Ein Heldenleben is one of Richard Strauss’ most monumental tone poems and is among his most autobiographical works. Each movement tells the story of the hero (Strauss) and his struggles with mankind, love, and most importantly, the enemy on the battlefield. Last performed by the TSO in 1999 under the direction of Andrew Massey, this is the first time the orchestra will perform Strauss’ stunning music under Music Director Alain Trudel’s baton. “This is a very important concert that reflects on a very important time in history,” says Alain Trudel, Music Director of the Toledo Symphony. “It’s a big piece, and it’s a piece I love. More than 100 musicians of varying ages will join together on stage to perform Strauss’ famous Ein Heldenleben, one of his great symphonic works.” “What a wonderful opportunity for the TSYO Philharmonic Orchestra members to perform side-by-side with their professional TSO counterparts,” says Joan Weiler, Toledo Symphony Youth Orchestras Coordinator. “These types of performances serve a greater educational purpose and it gives these students added confidence to perform with such high caliber musicians.” A Hero’s Life will take place Friday, November 16 and Saturday, November 17, 2018 at 8 PM at the Toledo Museum of Art’s Peristyle Theater. Tickets are available at or by calling the Toledo Symphony Box Office at 419.246.8000.  

Comedy in the cards in Black Swamp Players’ ‘Clue: The Musical’

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Black Swamp Players has survived. With “Clue: The Musical” the Players start their 51st season, something that seemed in doubt earlier this year. What better way to start that season than killing a character off. And there’s never been a more congenial corpse than Mr. Boddy (Heath Diehl). He serves as master of ceremonies to his own murder, and even after he ends up dead at the end of the first act, he can’t help but return to join the chorus line. Silly? You betcha. And in the spirit of a musical based on a board game, the audience gets to play along. “Clue: The Musical” opens tonight (Friday, Nov. 9) at 7:30 p.m. and continues with shows this and next weekend at first United Methodist Church. Click for showtimes and details. Audience members get game cards and a pencil with their programs.  The goal is to guess who killed Mr. Boddy, where and with what weapon. The solution differs at every show.  At the start Mr. Boddy along with Prop Runner (Katie Partlow) takes a jaunt into the audience to have them select game cards determining each of those elements. The chosen cards are placed in an envelope on stage to await the  big reveal at the end. Then we get to meet the suspects. This being a play, just cardboard cut-out characters won’t do. No, these familiar figures emerge from the box in full two-dimensional glory, and not atallinclined to play by the rules. They are caricatures of the stock characters in murder mysteries. Mrs. Peacock (Karla Richardson) is the much married rich widow with a trail of husbands, all dead under mysterious circumstances. Colonel Mustard (Andrew Varney) is an old lover, who has survived. He was married to Boddy’s mother and lays claim to ownership of the mansion and the scene of the crime. Miss Scarlet (Annelise Mason) is a small time Vegas entertainer, who at one point gave Boddy an encore in his hotel room. Professor Plum (Matt Crawford) is a pretentious intellectual who is writing a book with Boddy and has been on the losing end of some business dealings with him. Mr. Green (Garett Hummel) has also had shady business dealings with Boddy, though he’s been more successful at it. And Mrs. White (Monica Hiris) is the much put-upon domestic, literally the chief cook and bottle washer…