Sancho's Scene: Community Events that Wander off the Path

In the mood for a little night music this weekend? Arbor Opera Theater is performing Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata this Thursday through Sunday at the University of Michigan’s Mendelssohn Theater. La Traviata spins the heart-wrenching tale of a star-crossed courtesan, Violetta and her noble lover, Alfredo (and it also happens to be the opera featured in Pretty Woman, according to Wikipedia). The opera will be performed with supertitles, but should you desire to study a bit beforehand, the library owns several recordings of La Traviata, and guides on the subject of opera in general. Andiamo!

Ann Arbor Summer Festival Top of the Park

The Ann Arbor Summer Festival is kicking off June 15th with music, food, film, and other live performances. While you can pay to see performances such as Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and Lyle Lovett , be sure to check out Top of the Park for free. This admissions-free portion of the festival is held on Ingalls Mall on University of Michigan’s Central Campus and features musical performances, dance demonstrations, films, and even a Brazilian Festival. The three-week festival will kick off with performances by local favorites such as Salmagundi, Hullabaloo, Owen B. and the Overtime Band, and NOMO. Get a sense of the history of the festival by checking out AADL’s collection of posters from some of the past events starting in 1985.

Dinosaur Jr. at the Blind Pig

Did you wear flannel shirts and Doc Martens in the early 90's? Do you strongly identify as a Generation Xer? Then, you'll be happy to know that Dinosaur Jr., the indie rock band from the 90's, will be in Ann Arbor June 3rd and 4th at the Blind Pig. The original members recently reunited for a new album, their first since 1988, and are now on the road. However, if you're expecting a greatest hits set, you'll be a bit disapointed. The band is said to be primarily performing from their latest album, Beyond. So leave your flannel at home and discover something new. Doors open at 9:30 pm starting with Michigan band, Awesome Color.

Meanwhile check out their last album before they dissolved the name Dinosaur Jr. in 1997 as well as the book, Our Band Could Be Your Life: Scenes from the American Indie Underground. Dinosaur Jr. is just one of the many bands chronicled in the book.

Kristin Hersh at The Ark

Kristin Hersh, former lead singer of the Throwing Muses and current leader of 50 Foot Wave, will be performing some of her solo work Thurs., May 24th at 8 pm at The Ark. Known for her work in the alternative post-punk scene, Hersh is now known for her songwriting and poetic innovation. She's even got a blog!

Want to get to know her music a little better before heading to the show? Check out her albums at the AADL. Still want more? Check out some her musical influences: Talking Heads, Violent Femmes, Meat Puppets, Dead Kennedys, and Velevet Underground.

Friday Nite at the Blind Pig: SLUM VILLAGE

Slum VillageSlum Village

Slum Village will perform at the Bling Pig on Friday, April 27th at 9:30pm.

Homegrown (from Detroit), Slum Village has always stayed true to Hip-Hop by mixing old-school rap with funk/soul. The group formed during the late 80's at Pershing High School and quickly became a favorite of the Detroit underground scene. By the mid-late '90s, Slum Village could be counted among Hip-Hop's elite.

Want more? Check these out:
Slum Village Official Site
MySpace -- Slum Village

Similiar Artists:
Tribe Called Quest
De La Soul
Common
Pharcyde

Enjoy!

Japanese Taiko Drumming returns to the Ark!

Kiyoshi Nagata EnsembleKiyoshi Nagata Ensemble

The Kiyoshi Nagata Ensemble will perform at The Ark on Saturday, April 28th at 8 pm.

The Toronto-based professional music group has been delighting audiences since 1998 with rhythmic beats and mesmerizing movements. Their performances bring new life to a sacred Japanese tradition.

Want more info? Check these out:

Japanese Taiko Drumming

Japanese Folk Music

Soh Daiko

Enjoy!

ARTIST HIGHLIGHT: Jennifer Lopez

Jennifer LopezJennifer Lopez

Released March 27th, Como Ama Una Mujer will have Jennifer Lopez fans singing Spanish ballads in the streets. This is actually J.Lo's first all-Spanish album and honestly, this one is a step above her English recordings.

One song that particulary stands out is Por Arriesgarnos. Hubby Marc Anthony joins her in this powerful duet that would melt even the hardest of hearts.

And check out the new video for Que Hiciste. It's a good introduction to the album.

Want more? Peruse AADL's J.Lo collection. You'll notice that she's come a long way since Jenny from the Block.

Enjoy!

Come what (ever) may...

Stone SourStone Sour

The Jagermeister Music Tour is coming to the State Theatre in Detroit this Friday, March 30th at 6:30pm.

Headlining the event will be Stone Sour (FYI: The song 30/30-150 from the album Come what (ever) may was nominated for a Grammy in the category of "Best Metal Performance").

Joining them will be Shadows Fall and Lacuna Coil.

Now believe me when I say that this concert is not for the faint at heart. Even you "die-hard" metal fans need to boss up before you go...

Library Songsters

In the spirit of the 1950s folk music revival, the AADL Library Songsters program brings folk musicians, storytellers and dancers into our public schools to teach these traditional arts to students. This year Banjo Betsy Beckerman taught fourth graders at Angell and Pattengill how to write Michigan history songs; Glen Morningstar Jr. brought "Dancing Through American History" to Burns Park, and Lee Knight showed storytelling to sixth graders at Slauson. At the end of each three-day residency, students came to the library to perform their creations for each other or parents. They had a good time learning history, and some go to hear live folk music at places like The Ark or Crazy Wisdom Tea Room. AADL has a excellent collection of folk music recordings, histories and songbooks.

On the road again...

Willie NelsonWillie Nelson

Here's a real treat for all you Country & Western fans... Willie Nelson is coming to the Fox Theatre in Detroit on Friday, March 23rd @ 7:30pm. Joining him will be Merle Haggard, Ray Price, and Asleep at the Wheel...

And who knows? If you are able to get front row seats, you may be close enough to see a few signatures on Trigger...

Enjoy!

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