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Editor’s Note: "Express Picks" is Cincy Chic‘s newest column. Columnist Thom Mariner is the publisher of Express Cincinnati, a free local print and online publication dedicated to the promotion of arts and philanthropy, so each week he will share his picks for the best events in the Cincinnati area. If you have ideas or suggestions for "Express Picks," e-mail


May 18 — Tuesday


Cincinnati Opera — Redux Public Performance Series "Bohème"


If you’re curious about opera, but short on time, here’s an opportunity to get up-close-and-personal with a 50-minute version of Puccini’s beloved "La Bohème"


7 p.m., Northside Tavern, 4163 Hamilton Ave., Northside

(513) 241-2742


Ensemble Theatre — "The Marvelous Wonderettes"


This is your final chance to see this extremely popular show — extended two weeks via popular demand.


7:30 p.m., 1127 Vine St., Over-the-Rhine

(513) 421-3555


May 19 — Wednesday


Playhouse in the Park — "The Fantasticks"


This longest-running musical of all time is an intimate, timeless, allegorical tale of forbidden, youthful love and the perspective provided by maturation. It will run through June 20.


7:30 p.m., Thompson Shelterhouse Theatre, Mt. Adams

(513) 421-3888


May 20 — Thursday


Mercantile Library — Reading by author Curtis Sittenfeld


The New York Times best-selling author and Cincinnati native reads selections and signs her novels, American Wife, Prep and The Man of My Dreams.


7 p.m., $10 for members; $15 for nonmembers. 414 Walnut St., Downtown

(513) 621-0717


Bacchanalian Society — BYO wine tasting, benefiting Madcap Puppets


7-10 p.m., $10 per person in advance or $15 per person at the door, Moonlite Garden/Coney Island,.


Opera in Cinema — "L’Orfeo" by Claudio Monteverdi One of the earliest works (1607) identified as an opera, this recorded performance of the Orpheus story is from the legendary Teatro alla Scala in Milan.


7:15 p.m. (also at 1 p.m. May 23), Rave Motion Pictures, West Chester


May 21 — Friday


Prairie Gallery — Opening reception


Installation/mixed-media exhibit of work by Katie Parker


6-9 p.m., 4035 Hamilton Ave., Northside

(513) 703-5729


May Festival — "Robert Porco 20th Anniversary Concert


The oldest choral festival in the Western Hemisphere presents a concert honoring and featuring conductor Robert Porco and his 20-plus years of preparing the May Festival Chorus. Experience exciting, accessible music by Leonard Bernstein and William Walton, plus a world premiere commissioned by the singers.


8 p.m., Music Hall

(513) 381-3300


May 22 — Saturday


May Festival — "Season Finale"


This concluding concert will feature a grand-scale Russian opera by Rachmaninoff and Mussorgsky in addition to the spectacular choral version of Tchaikovsky’s "1812 Overture."


8 p.m., Music Hall

(513) 381-3300


Exhale Dance Tribe — "Going… (Now)here"


Expressionistic and multi-lingual dance that is rooted in rhythmic language and storytelling features diverse and versatile performers.


8 p.m., Jarson Kaplan Theater/Aronoff Center for the Arts

(513) 479-5047


Contemporary Arts Center — "The Event"


A gala street party will spread throughout the Backstage District with artist Shepard Fairey taking a turn as DJ.


10 p.m., 44 E. Sixth St., Downtown



May 23 — Sunday


Cincinnati Ballet and ballet tech Cincinnati — "Cultures of Dance"


This collaboration highlights the commonality of movement in various dance cultures and the timeline from ancient to modern dance styles.


3 p.m., Mayerson JCC, 8485 Ridge Road

(513) 621-5219


concert:nova — "Carnival of the Animals"


The original music by Camille Saint-Saens is a staple among pieces programmed for children. For this performance, concert:nova has commissioned 15 short "animal" compositions — contemporary musical representations of these creatures. All will be brought to life by dancers from the Cincinnati Ballet. (Also at 8 p.m. May 24)


7 p.m., Mickey Jarson Kaplan Performance Studio/Cincinnati Ballet Center


For a full listing and preview of upcoming arts and philanthropic events, as well as photos from past events, visit or pick up a copy at hundreds of locations where you work and play.




Photo courtesy of Thom Mariner