Sunday with the Friends
Nearly every Sunday at 2:00 pm, the Friends of Lakewood Public Library are proud to present
free concerts, lectures and more. Join us in the Main Library Auditorium. These programs are
open to one and all.
August 17 Red Light Roxy
If you’re looking for an experience and the music has got to swing, it’s got to be Red Light Roxy. This professional jazz band from right here in Cleveland, Ohio plays an upbeat mix of jazz standards, jump blues, swing, boogie-woogie and a dash of old school rhythm and blues. They grabbed their name from the notorious burlesque house on Short Vincent Avenue where, back in the day, lawyers, politicians and everyday citizens mingled with gangsters, gamblers, showgirls and celebrities for hot jazz. Eileen Burns, formerly of the world renowned Glenn Miller Orchestra, and Demetrius Steinmetz of the distinguished Tri-C Jazz program bring some of the city’s best players together for a whirlwind tour of songs made famous by the likes of Ella Fitzgerald, Ruth Brown, Frank Sinatra and Peggy Lee.
September 7 The Brittany Reilly Band
This constantly evolving jam band, based out of Bay Village, has no plans for slowing down or settling on a line-up. Carried away on a whirlwind tour through twenty-eight states with nearly a thousand shows under their belts, the Brittany Reilly Band welcomes new musicians and new material as a natural part of the flow. Their inspiration gallops along on a fusion sound of psychedelic rock, honkytonk, bluegrass, blues, Americana, western swing and Grateful Dead styled influences. And they never play the same show twice. Brittany's voice is strong and true, and every day brings fresh possibilities for new music.
September 14 The Vibrant Wind Dancers: Sun and Sand
“Where-e'er you walk, cool gales shall fan the glade, / Trees, where you sit, shall crowd into a shade, / Where-e'er you tread, the blushing flow'rs shall rise, / And all things flourish where you turn your eyes.” Alexander Pope is the poet. Mary Bodnar is the director and choreographer of the Vibrant Wind Dancers, an interpretive dance troupe, heavily influenced by Middle Eastern flavors. With long flowing scarves of silk, this end of
summer performance incorporates the sun drenched poetry of Max Ermann, Mary Oliver, William Shakespeare, Rita Dove, Robert Louis Stevenson and the aforementioned Pope into their dance of burning sand and sweltering air. “Oh! How I long with you to pass my days, / Invoke the muses, and resound your praise; / Your praise the birds shall chant in ev'ry grove, And winds shall waft it to the pow'rs above"
This performance takes place in the First Floor Multipurpose Room.
September 21 World Slavery and the Rise of American Music
Guitarist Ray Kamalay casts some much-needed light on the genealogy of American music and puts our shared culture in the perspective of world history. Through story and song, follow the development of slavery from the days of ancient Rome to the roots of American society. Listen to the songs of the slaves, rising in chorus through a long chronology that leads to the musical explosion of the twentieth century. “We have had many great contributors to the American scene, but I think we have misjudged the special contribution of the slaves themselves. These people must have been brilliant and sensitive souls, especially courageous to create such effective culture in the midst of such dire hopelessness.” With a degree in political philosophy, Kamalay has been a professional musician all his life, performing the Detroit and Toronto Jazz Festivals, the Winnipeg and
Philadelphia Folk Festivals and the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland, among other places. He believes it’s time we acquire a new understanding of the meaning of the blues.
September 28 Colin Dussault
Colin Dussault, the hardest working bluesman in Cleveland, will tell you straight up that he had no choice but to be a musician. It wasn’t exactly a vocational choice. Born the son of a bass player, rhythm and blues flowed through his veins from an early age. His father’s vast record collection exposed him to the musical universe of Blind Willie McTell, Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Bob Dylan, the Beatles, the Stones, the Youngbloods, Led
Zepplin and Frank Zappa—and you can hear them all in his expansive blues. After playing thousands of shows with luminaries all over the land, he’s become the master of Memphis blues, rock and roll and American folk—but that won’t stop him throwing some jazz, swing and even the occasional polka into the set list to keep the crowds guessing.
October 5 Sommerfugl
Fall is here, but the summer is not forgotten. Bid a final adieu to the season of short sleeves and prepare your heart for the winter ahead. The butterfly is the summer fool. (That's both the literal translation and the pronunciation of the band's Danish name.) William Drake and Holly Overton bring alive the beauty of one particular butterfly on a summer's day with their eclectic mix of love songs, torch songs, duets, originals and other surprises. These veterans of the local music scene are two of the finest vocalists and instrumentalists around, coming together in a synergistic rainbow of sound. Rich and delicate harmonies and a joyous dance of guitar and violin will whisk you away on a captivating emotional journey that will leave you reminiscing about warm, lazy summer days.
October 12 WordStage: Bloomsbury and the Great War
Our resident theatricals are back with a dramatic presentation featuring Virginia Woolf and the informal group of writers, philosophers and artists who met in the Bloomsbury district of London between 1907 and 1930 to search for the meaning of truth, goodness and beauty over small dinners and impromptu gatherings. WordStage director and playwright Tim Tavcar transports the audience back to Garsington, the country cottage of Lady
Ottoline and Philip Morrell, just after the beginning of the First World War. The Morrells are visited by Leonard and Virginia Woolf, and the four of them discuss the ramifications of the war upon their artistic and pacifist friends. The illusion of a peek back through time will be completed by a solo violin underscore featuring music of the day.
October 19 Ryann Anderson Trio
Layering delicious sound upon delicious sound to create joyful, original escapes he likes to call, “ice cream for your ears,” guitarist Ryann Anderson filled the Library with a symphonic presence even as a solo artist. Now backed by a trio, he returns after many years, drawing upon jazz, classical and folk traditions, to share the fruits of his maturing genius. Don't be afraid to have fun. If you listen closely, the experience can be uplifting, enlightening and even dizzying, but you won't be the only one left smiling.
October 26 Two Poets: Larry Smith and Susan Grimm
There won’t be any flashpots, mood lighting or costume changes—just two of Northeast Ohio’s most accomplished poets trading verses back and forth. Doesn’t that sound like a nice change of pace for a Sunday afternoon? Born and raised in the Ohio River Valley, Larry Smith is a poet, a publisher, a father, a grandfather and a retired English professor. In his latest book, Lake Winds, Smith shares intimate reflections on family,
Catholic spirituality, Buddhist meditation, retirement and mortality in plain, transparent language that will be a breath of fresh air to those who think they don’t understand modern poetry. As the publisher of Bottom Dog
Press, he has shepherded scores of poets to the printed page, translated two books of Chinese poetry and written literary biographies of Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Kenneth Patchen. But his first love remains the capturing
of quiet moments and constant things—lake breezes, back yards, dogs, the emptying of a desk—and sharing them with audiences. Cleveland native Susan Grimm is the editor of Ordering the Storm: How to Put Together a Book of Poems, published by the Cleveland State University Poetry Center. In 1999, she was named Ohio Poet of the Year by the Ohio Poetry Day Association and has published several books of poetry including her latest chapbook, Roughed Up by the Sun’s Mothering Tongue. Her gentle wit and sharp language will serve as a nice counterpoint to the earnest observations of her friend, Smith. Books will be available for sale and signing at the event. <catalog> <catalog>
November 2 NEO Dixie
What is the NEO twist in this quintet's traditional Dixieland revue? You'll just have to come listen for yourself. The story begins fifteen years ago at Fort Hood when Corporal Lempener of the U.S. Army asked himself, “Trash or treasure?” while rooting through First Cavalry Band's sheet music library. It took him ten years to find the right musicians with the likeminded curiosity to dive into that dusty old box of Dixieland jazz. Tom
Lempner tries to play that shiny Kenny G thingy. Mark Russo plays trumpet…and kills it! No one is sure why, but Kris Morron still likes playing the trombone. Darren Allen is the boss on drums and Cutty Calhoun eats Tuba Flakes for breakfast.
November 9 Strawberry Sunday
New in town, this avant garde duo of classically trained musicians from the Cleveland Institute of Music is determined to make a lasting impression. Flutist Kimberly Zaleski and cellist Trevor Kazarian draw their influences from such diverse sources as their respective teachers at the Cleveland Orchestra, Radiohead, the Beatles, Time for Three and Project Trio to create original songs born of alternative rock with improvisatory jazz and classical form. This blending of musical styles, mixed with jamming high energy and beat-boxing swing creates a product that is sweet but also very passionate. Let's say we finish it off with a round of well-deserved applause.
November 16 ELEGANCE
Soprano Kathleen Bosl is the organizing force behind this outstanding local ensemble, performing classical repertoire by the composers Bizet, Delibes, Faure, Mozart, Copland, Vaughan Williams and Giulio Benedict. Bosl will be accompanied by pianist, Rosalima Valdez Pham on most of the afternoon's selections, and flautist, Rachel Kim will join her on four select pieces. As professionally trained musicians, their influences are, “first and foremost correct, classical technique such as is taught in music conservatories to those desiring to perform the highest grade of music.”
This performance takes place in the First Floor Multipurpose Room.
December 7 Mike and Mary: Songs of the Season
With Mary rediscovering lovely songs from long forgotten Broadway shows and Mike writing fresh, new arrangements, this likable pair is able to do what they love best and entertain an audience at the same time with their cabaret show. Performing the music of the season with tunes by George and Ira Gershwin, Jule Styne, Rodgers and Hart and more, their show is peppered with stories of the composers, the origins of the music and the artists who originated this art form. <catalog>
December 14 The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer (1947)
Here’s some old school Hollywood magic, featuring icons in roles you would never expect. Shirley Temple is a blossoming seventeen year old high schooler who’s decided that she’s in love with a playboy played by Cary Grant. (Okay, that’s not such an unexpected role for him.) The twist is that Shirley’s older sister, Myrna Loy, is a no-nonsense judge who’s not afraid to abuse her power. Grant has bigger fish to fry, but Loy sentences him to woo Temple until she gets over her silly crush. Throwing himself into the teenage scene, Grant gets down with the slang of the day and does the rest of the voodoo that they do, too as he conspires to find an age-appropriate love interest for his lovely nemesis. The resolution to this unlikely affair is as satisfying as it is predictable. <catalog>
January 4 A Visit with C.S. Lewis
When Kevin Radaker played Henry David Thoreau last year, there wasn’t an empty seat in the house for his thoughtful combination of scholarship and performance. Now Radaker returns to the Library as C.S. Lewis,
drawing every word he speaks from the author’s writings in order to share Lewis’ eloquent thoughts on pain and suffering, pride, free will, love, grief, anxiety and prayer. Best known for children’s books like The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, C.S. Lewis was a distinguished Oxford and Cambridge literary scholar who branched out into imaginative science fiction and fantasy literature for young people, infused with Christian allegory from his own spiritual journey. In 1963, the last year of his life, Lewis will tell the extraordinary story of his conversion to Christianity and recount his career as the most popular and highly acclaimed religious writer of the twentieth century. When the lights come up and the mask is dropped, Radaker, a professor of English at Anderson University, will answer questions from the audience.
January 11 Trepanning Trio
Trepanning Trio is an acoustic instrumental ensemble known for making oddly beautiful music with classical, traditional and handmade instruments, including viola da gamba, guzheng and pan lids screwed onto sticks played with violin bows. Contrary to its name, this trio performs with a rotating lineup of six to fourteen members drawn from an unlikely rogues’ gallery of musicians, composers, artists, writers and ethnomusicologists. With a devotion to the complex and pretty, they have shared the stage with free improvisation luminaries like Eugene Chadbourne and Paal Nilssen-Love.
January 18 The Hollywood Slim Band
A proud member of the Cleveland blues family, the Hollywood Slim Band has been entertaining crowds with their swing, jazz and blues for nearly forty years and they’re still adding new arrangements to their repertoire.
With tender three-part vocal harmonies and decades of playing together, they add their own touch to the music of Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter Jacobs, Louis Jordan, Ray Charles and The Nat King Cole Trio. A homegrown
spirit matched with loving instrumental mastery gives this band a vintage, rockin’ sound, inspired by the founding brothers’ love of Chicago blues and forties-era small combo jazz. .<catalog>
January 25 Mike Jacobs: Former Child Actor
Straight out of North Ridgeville, Mike Jacobs has played guitar, bass, drums, theremin and bassoon in groups like Colorado Biosphere, Up All Night Alien Scum, The Jotnar, Tracy Marie Band, and currently Smiley
Baldazar, The Brittany Reilly Band and Haight Street Revue. This concert will be his first proper solo effort in twenty years, featuring the debut of a suite of original songs written for the occasion. Jacobs has an unbridled imagination and the skill to match his vision—think Syd Barrett matched with Jimi Hendrix and just the right amount of John Denver. The title comes from former bandmates who used to convince hangers-on that Jacobs had starred in a short-lived Canadian sitcom called The Boy Who Hated Racoons. There's something about him that makes you wish it were true.
February 1 Duck Soup
It’s been called the funniest of the Marx Brothers films, a mad surrealistic masterpiece and the boldest anti-war statement to ever come out of Hollywood, but Groucho himself characterized it as, “four Jews telling jokes.” Groucho plays Rufus T. Firefly, the president and dictator of the bankrupt republic of Freedonia who declares war on neighboring Sylvania for some quick cash. Chico and Harpo arrive on the scene as enemy spies, Chicolini and Pinky, but soon find themselves becoming trusted members of Firefly’s cabinet—though Chicolini holds onto his day job selling peanuts. Whatever the plot is, it manages to stay well out of the way of the endless parade of puns, one-liners, pratfalls, sight gags, songs, slapstick, court martials and other bits of comedy that make us want to watch this movie again and again. The final battle—wherein the Marx brothers make a mockery of love, war, time and film itself—is a must-see corker! <catalog>
February 8 Two Poets: Joe Toner and Dan Rourke
The pounding snow is driving you bananas, and the cold is threatening to snap your bones. So why not slam down a hot chocolate, get to the Library and warm yourself with laughter and poetry? For Joe Toner and
Dan Rourke, poetry is the noblest of human endeavors—part vaudeville act, part existential probe into the reasons a grown man might be addicted to peanut butter. Come savor their luxuriant reflections on language and gaze upon the last two people in the world without smart phones. Winner of a 2014 CPAC award, Dan Rourke has performed his poetry for twenty-five years in the Cleveland area. In addition to poetry, he has written essays, song lyrics, a musical and short stories and is currently working on a novel about the life of Fair Hooker. A former high school English teacher, magazine editor, and bookseller, he now works at the Cleveland Foodbank. All of which pales in comparison to the fact that he once wrestled a bear. Joe Toner also taught English at St. Ignatius High School and now teaches at Rocky River High School. As a child, perhaps he delivered your daily newspaper. Since you probably didn’t tip him back then, come and personally thank him by showing up.
February 15 Jonathan Hooper
Jonathan Hooper is a nice young man with an old soul who we imagine would fit right in at a 1940s New Orleans piano bar. This classically trained vocalist can croon a tune that will transport you back to the golden age of American music, but his true love since age five has always been the piano. After studying in New York with jazz giant Dave Frank, he’s back in his hometown to entertain you with some of his favorite music, combining the solo jazz piano of Bill Evans, Art Tatum and others with the timeless crooning of Frank Sinatra. Who knows, there may even be a few jokes! This performance takes place in the First Floor Multipurpose Room.
February 22 Ernie Krivda
Perhaps Mike Shanley said it best in the Jazz Times when he wrote, “Ernie possesses an endless flow of melodic ideas that makes everything he plays sound fresh and alive." Now in his fifth decade as a jazz performer, Ernie Krivda is acknowledged by both critics and peers as one of the world's great tenor saxophone players. But as Harvey Pekar wryly pointed out, “no one may know this because he lives in Cleveland.” In demand all over the world, he can only say, “It might be better for my career to live somewhere else but it’s better for my art to live in Cleveland.” An impressive body of recordings backs up that statement—check out
our extensive collection of Krivda CDs—but this concert is a chance for Library audiences to experience his performance in person in a cozy little auditorium with no clinking glasses and no amplification—just the sound and the man. Sit back and let him close out our season with a roar. <catalog>
Visit the Events Page for more great
Library programs sponsored by the Friends!
Friends Book Sales
Friends Fall Sale
Saturday, October 18
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Friends Holiday Bag of Books Sale
Saturday, December 6
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Join the Friends and receive entrance to special, members-only preview sales on Thursday October 16 and Thursday December 4 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Memberships may be purchased at the door or with the form below.
Printable Donation Form