It’s open for debate whether the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Pianofest is about the performers or the audience. It’s essentially a master class for CIM’s top piano students and faculty members, but thanks to helpful feedback and a post-concert reception, it’s a lot more fun. Cleveland International Piano Competition artistic director Paul Schenly, whose career includes European tours and soloist gigs with all of the major U.S. orchestras, heads up CIM’s piano department and the contest, which starts at 7:30 p.m. at Mixon Hall (11021 East Blvd., 216.791.5000). Tickets: $5. — Michael Gill
Canadian noise-rockers Japandroids make quite a racket on their 2009 debut album, Post-Nothing, coming off like No Age with a sense of melody. You’d think the whole guitarist-and-drummer-make-really-loud-music thing would be played out by now, but these scruffy hipsters manage to wring a lot of intriguing sounds out of their instruments. Plus, they keep things thankfully brief, with Post-Nothing clocking in at a brisk 35 minutes. Best of all, Japandroids aren’t overly artsy, which makes them a bit more accessible than most of the other low-fi noisemakers out there. Plus, they don’t sound Canadian — another bonus. Japandroids play the Grog Shop (2785 Euclid Heights Blvd., 216.321.5588) at 9 p.m. Avi Buffalo, Jaguar Love and Two Hand Fools open. Tickets: $10. — Michael Gallucci
With each Shearwater release, it becomes more difficult to believe that Jonathan Meiburg’s band began life as an Okkervil River side project. Shearwater’s latest album, The Golden Archipelago, confirms Meiburg’s ambitions: It’s a demanding semi-concept piece that should be heard in sequence. Meiburg spends his free time as an outdoorsman, camping in faraway places like Tierra del Fuego and the Galapagos. He brings the lessons he’s learned from these excursions to The Golden Archipelago, with his island experiences in particular informing “Meridian,” “Hidden Lakes” and “An Insular Life.” The challenging structures of “Uniforms” and “God Made Me” meld folk and classical influences, veering into post-rock territory, even when the musical bed is mostly drums, bass and guitar. The album includes a 72-page dossier that provides context to the songs’ subjects. It’s not music that’s easy to grasp, and the whole thing requires far more patience than the average listener might be willing to invest. But those who go along for the ride are rewarded with a majestic and thrilling record that continues Meiburg’s aggressive development. Shearwater play the Beachland Tavern (15711 Waterloo Rd., 216.383.1124), with Wye Oak and Hospital Ships opening at 9 p.m. Tickets: $12. — Chris Drabick
It must be spring for real. Today, the North Union Farmers Market at Shaker Square comes out of hibernation from its indoor winter-market spot to take over Shaker Boulevard with an array of seasonal produce, flowers, baked goods and more — all locally grown or made. (Be sure to pick up the first herb pots of the season or a bag of multicolored oyster mushrooms from Killbuck Farms.) The market opens at 8 a.m. with the ceremonial shearing of the sheep and runs through noon — regular hours through December. There’ll also be alpacas, music and Brian Doyle of Danny’s Organic Marketplace in Mentor, this week’s “Chef at the Market,” who will dispense info and advice. North Union Farmers Markets also sponsors six other markets that open later in the season; next up is the Crocker Park Market, which opens April 10. — Anastasia Pantsios
NASA Glenn Research Center (21000 Brookpark Rd.) is one of Cleveland’s economic-development jewels, engaging in space and aeronautics-related scientific research. So it creates the kind of skilled jobs no casino ever could. Its periodic tours offer opportunities for people to learn about what goes on inside the facility and, most importantly, for children to experience the excitement and potential of studying science, math, engineering and technology, giving them a concrete tool for envisioning their futures. Starting today, the tours take place on the first and third Saturdays of each month. They leave from the briefing center at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. Today’s tour will visit the Exercise Countermeasures Laboratory, where the impact of exercise and microgravity on astronauts is tested. Kids can see how real-life advances sync up with what they see in movies. You’ll also visit the gift shop — so be prepared for some “buy me, buy me, buy me!” The tours are free; you must be a U.S. citizen, and adults must have a government-issued I.D. Reservations are required at least 24 hours in advance; call 216.433.9653 or go to nasa.gov/centers/glenn/events/tours.html. — Anastasia Pantsios
The Edible Books Festival started a decade ago by two Montreal women and quickly spread around the world to nearly two dozen countries, where it takes place annually as close to April Fools’ Day as possible. It hit Cleveland in 2004, when Loganberry Books and Strong Bindery (13015 Larchmere Blvd., 216.795.9800) took up the cause, hosting the area’s first edible-books event. Since then, talented Cleveland artists and chefs — as well as enthusiastic and creative amateurs — have submitted their literary/culinary handiwork for display, judging and, ultimately, eating. There are a lot of cake-like and other baked creations, of course, but last year, one book even featured tabouli. Categories this year include Most Book-Like, Most Delicious and the wide-open Most Awesome. You can submit a piece by calling the store or e-mailing email@example.com; it’s free to enter (and entrants get a handmade mini-book pin). Set-up is at noon, viewing and judging start at 1 p.m., and eating begins after the awards are announced at 2 p.m. It’s free to look; there’s a $3 fee to vote and eat. — Anastasia Pantsios
Printmaker Russ Revock has been paying attention to Cleveland State University’s annual Student Art Show for most of its 39 years — first as a student in the early ’80s and now as a member of the school’s art faculty. “If you’re an experienced student-show viewer as I am, and if you go to the shows at other area schools, you’ll see that CSU’s always has a personality,” he says. “I think there’s less attention to traditional academic concerns here. Work tends to have more whimsy and a kind of sardonic look. I think it’s because we’ve got students from all different backgrounds — some who were stars of their high schools, some who have no art experience whatsoever. The diversity makes the show interesting.” Jurors for the CSU Student Art Show include gallerist William Rupnik and Kent-based painter Kelly Urquhart. It opens with a reception from 5-8 p.m. tonight and continues through May 8 at the CSU Art Gallery (2307 Chester Ave., 216.687.2103). Admission is free. — Michael Gill
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