Beyond the Valley of the Dolls has nothing to do with the 1967 cult classic about drug-popping showbiz gals. The 1970 campfest, co-written by critic Roger Ebert (who should give himself a big thumbs-down for contributing some of the clunky dialogue), revolves around an all-female rock group -- most excellently named the Carrie Nations -- and its journey into sex, drugs, and rock and roll. It's a nostalgic trip, heavy on period detail and light on taste, with enthusiastic direction by big-boob-fetishist Russ Meyer. Listen for the immortal come-on "I'd like to strap you on sometime" when Beyond the Valley of the Dolls screens at the Cleveland Cinematheque (11141 East Boulevard); it's at 7 tonight and 9 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7, $4 for members; call 216-421-7450.
Now that the Ramones are in short supply (Joey and Dee Dee are dead), guess it's up to erstwhile drummer Marky to keep the gabba-gabba-heys going. Marky Ramone will be at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame tonight for an interview with the Rock Hall's Howard Kramer and to perform a full set of Ramones songs with his band, Marky Ramone and Friends. Yeah, he was just a drummer -- and not an original member, but a replacement who joined in 1977, left six years later, then rejoined in 1988 -- but Marky did play on Road to Ruin, one-fourth of the band's holy quartet. Marky Ramone will be at the Rock Hall (1 Key Plaza) at 8:30. Tickets are $10. Call 216-515-1930 for more information.
Friday, June 27
Like Jerry Lewis, Dee Dee Bridgewater was appreciated more by the French than Americans during a huge chunk of her career. It took a 1997 tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, the Grammy-winning Dear Ella, to open ears to her wonderful and intricate phrasing. At 53 years of age, Bridgewater is truly one of our finest jazz singers. She's in town tonight for a performance of the high-theatrical music of songwriter Kurt Weill (to which she was introduced by Fitzgerald's classic version of Weill's "Mack the Knife"). Bridgewater is at the Cleveland Museum of Art's Gartner Auditorium (11150 East Boulevard) at 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $23 to $28, available by calling 216-421-7350.
Saturday, June 28
Ohio Dance Theatre's Denise Gula sees no reason to modernize the classic tale of Cinderella. "If you want to do something modern, then do something modern," the artistic director says. "If you're going to do a classic, don't set it in 2003." So this weekend's performances of the story of a girl, her wicked family, and a missing slipper are pretty straightforward. "Given the fairy-tale nature of the show, it's great for children," Gula says. Cinderella, the premier show of Ohio Dance Theatre's summer season, is at the Cleveland Play House's Bolton Theatre (8500 Euclid Avenue) at 2 and 7 today and 2 p.m. tomorrow. Tickets are $14 to $33. Call 216-795-7000 for more information.
Sunday, June 29
The Cleveland Summer Antiques Show & Sale wraps up today (it also runs noon to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday), and chances are pretty good that you'll find what you're looking for here. More than 100 dealers from across North America are participating, unloading everything from furniture, porcelain, and glass to paintings, jewelry, and lamps. Now in its third year, the show is produced by a Florida-based company that's responsible for some of the biggest antiques gatherings around the country. It takes place from noon to 5 p.m. at the CSU Convocation Center (2000 Prospect Avenue). Admission is $8 (which is good for entry all three days). Call 216-622-0670 for more information.
Monday, June 30
While you may not confuse the 50 or so pieces in The Cleveland Museum of Art Staff Invitational exhibit with works at the neighboring art museum, the scope and talent are impressive. "The variety of the pieces gives you a cross section of styles," says James McNamara, who organized the show. Paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculpture, and textiles make up the exhibition, which features contributions from more than 30 CMA employees. "There are some provocative pieces here," says McNamara, whose own paintings are featured. "It's a museum-quality show." Staff Invitational is at the Cleveland Public Library's Martin Luther King Jr. Branch (1962 Stokes Boulevard) through July 15. It's open noon to 8 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday and 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday and Friday. Admission is free. Call 888-262-0033 for more information.
Tuesday, July 1
Earlier this year, Hootie & the Blowfish returned from a five-year hiatus to release their fourth album. Self-titled and filled with the same heartland rock that made them stars in the mid-'90s, the record isn't so much a triumphant return as it is a placid "We're back." Hootie and crew are at Tower City Amphitheater tonight. Co-headlining is Big Head Todd & the Monsters, a fitting road companion that's prone to drifting into jam-band territory. Between Hootie and the Monsters, there's enough familiar material from their respective catalogs to fill a summer night with worn, warm songs. Showtime is 7:30 at Tower City Amphitheater (351 Canal Road). Tickets range from $19.50 to $25, available by calling 216-241-5555.
Wednesday, July 2
The Allman Brothers Band has made a 30-plus-year career out of turning simple Southern music into complex jams and showcases for its members (the group includes seven players these days). Its latest album, Hittin' the Note, is not only its first in almost a decade, it's also the Allmans' best work in nearly 20 years. Leader Gregg Allman has settled into his aged voice, lending the songs a bit of regret along with the inherent defiance. And guitarist Warren Haynes (taking a break from his own band, Gov't Mule) continues to be Southern-fried rock's most innovative and interesting player. Live, the band still pulls out warhorses like "Whipping Post" and "Midnight Rider," and they still play the hell out of them. The Allman Brothers Band is at Tower City Amphitheater (351 Canal Road) at 7:30 p.m. Opening the show is Karl Denson's Tiny Universe. Tickets are $22.50 to $49.50. Call 216-241-5555 for more information.
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