Shiner No. 2 at Artchitecture Gallery, September 19John Greiner's Shiner No. 2 continues where the first issue of his zine left off: with his tale about the fictional Clevelyn, which features robot and animal versions of people he knows, as well as stories and art by a handful of other artists. The zine mixes styles almost recklessly. There's Ryan Jaenke's cover - a flat, two-dimensional streetscape featuring an old storefront with broken windows and a phone off the hook. There's an episode of George McDougall's "Hanging Out in Iraq for a Year," illustrated by Andy MacDonald. There's a story by Kevin Fagan. There's also incidental art by Paul Rogers, M.L. Wagner, Paul Sydorenko and Paracelsus. Greiner sends the zine out into the world with an exhibit and release party at Artchitecture Gallery from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday. All of the original art will hang on the walls, and you can get copies of the zine for $5. The party is free. Artchitecture is at 1667 E. 40th St., Suite 1A. Call 216.533.5575.
Seven years before the birth of Laura Ingalls Wilder, and not too far from her home, Hamlin Garland was born. His short stories about turn-of-the-20th-century Wisconsin told of hard-working people in warm, appreciative tones. In August 2007, the American Folklore Theater of Door County, Wisconsin, premiered a new play with music by Paul Libman and Dave Hudson, based on Hamlin's stories and named after his first book, Main-Travelled Roads. Actors Summit Theater gives the show its regional premiere this week in a production starring regulars Keith Stevens, Kathleen Culler and C.J. Bonde. Also on board are Stephen Brockway, making his debut with the company, and Sasha Thackaberry (who has done just about everything at Actors Summit), making her directing debut. Evie Morris is musical director. Performances are at 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through October 5. Tickets: $25-$28. Go to actorssummit.org or call 330.342.0800.
You know you could give a State of the Union Address. Maybe you've even practiced it while adjusting your tie. Artist Diana Arce won a karaoke contest and, while basking in the adulation that followed, she conceived Politaoke - the marriage of politics and karaoke. She's now bringing it on the road. This week, SPACES and the Lit team up to make your political fantasy a reality. It's just like regular karaoke: There's a sign-up sheet, a numbered menu of political speeches to choose from and a video screen to help with the words. Arce has more than 60 speeches available - from famous (and very popular) ones by George W. Bush to speeches by third-party candidates like the Green Party's 2008 presidential nominee, Cynthia McKinney, and 2008 Constitution Party candidate the Rev. Chuck Baldwin. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. SPACES is at 2220 Superior Viaduct. It's free, but a $3 donation is suggested. Word of advice: Don't lose your place, but try to keep your eyes from lingering on the video screen. Call 216.621.2314.
The surprising thing about dinner theater in the Flats is that it hasn't happened sooner -- unless you count Christie's Cabaret. Debuting at the Powerhouse Pub this week, the fledgling Unknown Theater Company presents Just Killing Time in Las Vegas, a murder-mystery comedy that takes place at Nero's Castle, a third-rate Sin City casino. There's a cigarette girl, a showgirl, a long-in-the-tooth singer and his girlfriend. Their boss says they don't get along too well, but they wouldn't actually kill each other. At least he doesn't think so. The story and music are by Dawn Sniadak. Performances run through October 31. The Powerhouse Pub is at 2000 Sycamore St. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $38.50. Call 877.548.3237.
After a two-week delay, Bang and the Clatter's Sometimes in the Silence theater finally opens Martin McDonagh's black comedy The Lieutenant of Inishmore, which makes its Ohio premiere. Set in a rural Irish village, it's the story of a blood feud involving the slaying of the titular lieutenant's cat. The Broadway premiere reputedly used six gallons of fake blood every night, which begs the question: Can the Seans (B&C cofounders Derry and McConaha) top that? Sometimes in the Silence is at 224 Euclid Ave. Performances run nightly at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. through October 19. All tickets $15. Call 330.606.5317.
It's a big weekend for Virginia Woolf in Northeast Ohio. GroundWorks wraps up a two-week premiere run of Lynn Taylor Corbett's new dance piece about the late novelist who drowned herself, and Ensemble Theater presents the beloved Edward Albee play Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Performances are at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and at 3 p.m. Sundays through October 5 at the Cleveland Play House's Studio One Theater, 8500 Euclid Ave. Tickets: $12 to $24. Call 216.321.2930 or go to ensemble-theatre.com.
As sure as Cleveland hits a kind of meteorological lottery for a couple weeks after Labor Day and scores the finest weather in the world, the changing seasons mean that the Tremont Arts and Cultural Festival will soon take over Lincoln Park with artists booths, community booths, political booths (ya think?) and live performances. Be sure to check out Morrison Dance, which will mingle with the crowd in their brand of street performance from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Sunday. The performers will make their way through the shuffling masses. You won't be able to miss them, because they've got these fluffy white skirts visually popping against black-and-white striped stockings. Leave your car at home, because Lolly the Trolley will be offering rides to this and other stops on the Sparx Gallery Hop. Tremont Arts and Cultural Festival happens from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. It's free. Call 216.575.0920.
The Cleveland Museum of Art's Chalk Festival sounds like something conceived during the past 50 years Ð when major arts institutions scrambled to do something nice for the kids. Little ones may love it, but the concept of making masterpieces in chalk on the sidewalk dates back long before art museums actually began welcoming and engaging children. Four hundred years ago in Italy, people used to copy famous paintings on the pavements outside of cathedrals, usually drawing various artists' takes on the Madonna. This weekend, you and your kids can get on your hands and knees on the sidewalks on the museum's south side (around the garden, where the lagoon is) and make art. It's free to look at other people's work -- and that's a great deal, seeing that the museum has tapped artists Rafael Valdivieso, Story Lee Cadiz, Mark Jenks, George Kozmon, Wendy Mahon, Debra Sue Solecki and Chalk Festival Artistic Director Robin VanLear to make chalk drawings. But if you want to create your own, you can get a square of concrete and a box of chalk for $8 to $16, depending on how much space and how many colors you want to use. Sign up when you arrive.ÊThere's live music to keep you inspired. It runs 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Cleveland Museum of Art is at 11150 East Blvd. Call 216.707.2483
Whimsy abounds in the functional art of Lisa Musarra. We're talking frolicking monkeys, owls and fish adorning vivid stuff you can use, like serving trays. She's showing her stuff with five other artists - Nick Brilla, Brian Lazar, Beth Jaffe, Dawn Neff and Tom Kochheiser - at Local Girl Gallery, starting Saturday with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. and continuing through October 18. Local Girl is at 16106 Detroit Ave. in Lakewood. Call 216.228.1802 or go to localgirlgallery.com.
The choral music of Tudor England makes a good case for the existence of God. It's the result of a thorough investment of talent, beginning with construction of the towering cathedrals where the music was played -- soaring pillared spaces that make sound stick around awhile, so that it takes on a kind of aural halo. Quire Cleveland brings that sound to life at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist (1007 Superior Ave.). The group will perform a program called "Sing Joyfully," which spotlights William Byrd's "Mass for Four Voices." Also on the program are works by Thomas Tallis, Orlando Gibbons and Thomas Weelkes. Quire Cleveland is something new to the Cleveland music scene (at least since the demise of the Robert Page Singers): a professional choir. Led by Case Western Reserve's organ scholar and conductor Peter Bennett, the group focuses on Renaissance and Baroque church music. Its performance is at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. It's free, and tickets are not required. Call 216.771.6666, ext. 5510 for information, or go to quirecleveland.org.