While Darke County Center for the Arts’ Ruby Anniversary season has come to an end and the organization’s 41st season won’t be presenting concerts until fall, our community can partake of a wide variety of performing arts activities this summer — many of which are offered free of charge!
For example, the Greenville Municipal Concert Band, which has been an active performing ensemble for more than 125 years, opens its season at Marling Bandshell in Greenville City Park on Sunday, June 30, followed on July 7 by their highly anticipated Independence Day celebration. The series continues with shows by the entire band on July 14, Aug. 4, Aug. 11, and Sept. 1, as well as performances by the talented musicians who make up the group’s Jazz Band on July 21 and Aug. 25.
Greenville Public Library’s Family Fun Days provide, well, free fun for the entire family every Wednesday morning in June and July with diverse performing artists including comedy juggler Tony Steinbach, the delightful Madcap Puppets’ The Green Space Juggler, and amazing magician Matthew David Stanley, all who will perform outdoors on the inviting Library lawn, where a talent show featuring local participants will also be presented on July 10. Additionally, on July 17, juggler Tom Sparrow the Space Painter will perform inside the activity building of First Congregational Christian Church, and on July 24, Frisch Marionettes will present The Jungle Book onstage at Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall.
Versailles Towne and Country Players’ Summer Entertainment Series is full of delights, beginning with the energetic funk/rock/jazz sounds of the Deron Bell Band on Friday, June 21, and sensational Detroit performer Jill Jack and her Trio on June 28. Versailles High School graduate now Cincinnati-based attorney Chris Mulvaney and his band Boo Radley will present a show benefitting pancreatic cancer research on Saturday, July 6; the versatile big band sounds of the Kim Kelly Orchestra on July 12 and delightful duo Jamie-Sue Seal and John Latini performing their eclectic blend of blues, jazz, standards, and opera house follies on July 26 complete the sparkling agenda. These 7:30 p.m. performances on Main Street Fountain Square are briefly interrupted by T & C Players’ production of Mama Mia July 16 through 20 at Versailles Performing Arts Center; tickets for that show starring talented local singers/dancers/actors cost $13 and can be obtained by calling 937-381-7399 or going to the theatre company’s Website towneandcountryplayers.com.
Not too far away, Troy-Hayner Center presents numerous outstanding artists throughout the summer; their Fridays at Prouty Square Series in cooperation with Troy Main Street kicks off off June 14 with a musical variety show from the golden age of rock and roll, The Buzz Ford Show, and continues with pop/blues/Americana group Honey and Blue on July 12, fun, soulful and charming Shannon Clark and the Sugar on July 19, Dayton Funk All-Stars performing legendary hits from the annals of Dayton funk history on Aug. 2, outlaw country Sadie Bass Band on Aug. 9, and jazz, blues, and swing sounds from The Jugtime Ragband on Aug. 16.
Summer programs at the Hayner Center begin with old-time quartet Buckeye Junction on June 21, followed by phenomenal blues harmonica player Corky Siegel on July 9, folk/bluegrass paragon of current original music The Repeating Arms on July 16, the mesmerizing soundscape of brilliant guitarist Hiroya Tsukamoto on July 23, masterful hard-swinging jazz from the Keigo Hirakawa Trio on July 30, and bluegrass from Troy’s own Rum River Blend on Aug. 23. This bounty is, of course, free and open to the public, as are all Hayner concerts.
If you are willing to travel a little farther to enjoy an outstanding free concert, Dayton’s Levitt Pavilion offers an amazing array of music every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 4 p.m. The complete Levitt schedule can be viewed at levittdayton.org.
My goodness, I’ve run out of space before I’ve run out of events, proving that the concept that “there’s nothing to do around here” is grossly inaccurate. Take advantage of the bounteous opportunities awaiting this summer; you’ll be rewarded with memories to last a lifetime.