Mark your calendars and save the date

The arts scene in Columbus continued to create on its summer vacation. Regardless, the onset of fall brings with it a kind of renewed vigor among its makers, participants and patrons. With that in mind, here's a quick-hit look at 25 cool art events happening this fall to further whet your art-petite.

“BLK PWR Mixtape”

A small handful of recent utterances have been flag-planting moments for black artists in Columbus. Among them are Scott Woods' “Holler,” an every-day-for-a-month display of black creativity, and Marshall Shorts' Black Creatives Manifesto. Out of the latter comes “BLK PWR Mixtape: A Black Art Exhibition by Black Artists,” as local black makers explore themes from the aforementioned Manifesto, celebrating the history of black art and announcing a coming future. This show opens during the annual Creative Control Fest.


Opens Sept. 8

162 N. 6th St., Downtown

“Tchaikovsky V. Drake”

The Columbus Symphony Orchestra continues a recent tradition of bringing classical music and hip-hop together courtesy Steve Hackman's program. Three vocalists and a rapper will join the orchestra as it presents the music of the Russian composer's “Symphony No. 5” with Drake hits including “Started from the Bottom” and “Find Your Love.”

Ohio Theatre

Sept. 15

39 E. State St., Downtown

“Cindy Sherman: Imitation of Life”

Photography, personality and self-image come together in this career retrospective of the work of acclaimed artist Cindy Sherman. From her early work employing a variety of techniques to make herself over as imagined and generic B-movie actors to her 2016 series in which she takes the form of aging Hollywood divas, the pieces are imaginative, thought-provoking and visually captivating. This is the only exhibition of this collection outside of Los Angeles.

Wexner Center for the Arts

Sept. 16-Dec. 31

1871 N. High St., Campus

“12 Nazi Concentration Camps”

Photographer James Friedman made this series of works in the early '80s, a colorful counterpoint to historical images of these horrific places that capture tourists and survivors visiting one of 12 sites. In addition to bright color, sunlight and smiles often provide a striking contrast to the tragedy and human suffering associated with these Nazi camps. Angela Meleca brings this once-again-timely collection to her space this fall.

Angela Meleca Gallery

Sept. 16-Oct. 28

144 E. State St., Downtown

“The Turn of the Screw”

Yes, there is English-language opera, and this masterwork by British composer Benjamin Britten opens Opera Columbus' 2017-2018 season. Based on the Henry James novella of the same title, the story follows a governess hired to oversee three children in a household full of secrets. Britten's music combines tonal work with atonality, a perfect complement to the uncomfortable aspects of the story. The production will feature two singers from the company's partnership with the Juilliard School.

Southern Theatre

Sept. 27-Oct. 1

21 E. Main St., Downtown

Cartoon Crossroads Columbus

This now-instantly-recognizable staple of the Columbus Arts scene moves a few weeks earlier in the calendar for 2017. Hosted by the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library, the four-day festival celebrates animation, comics, publishing and all things 'toon, with featured artists this year including Derf Backderf, Kat Fajardo and Columbus Museum of Art Columbus Comics Residency recipient Laura Park. Sessions, screenings, exhibitions and networking are the order of the week at arts spaces around town.

Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum

Sept. 28-Oct. 1

1813 N. High St., Campus

“The Sight of Music”

What does music look like? Not notated music, but what visions does it evoke in the mind's eye? Synesthesia — the activation of one part of the brain following the stimulation of another — is the next step in answering this question. Artists will present works based on the colors, shapes and lines produced in the mind by music. Lectures and a Richard Lopez-commissioned composition will be part of this fall show at the CAC.

Cultural Arts Center

Sept. 29-Nov. 4

139 W. Main St., Downtown

John Cleese

A generation of Americans knows John Cleese as the originator of clever recurring roles on “Cheers,” “Will & Grace” and the like … is something you might say if his work with comic legends Monty Python's Flying Circus wasn't still central to popular culture. Cleese himself will be in Columbus in September, chatting, telling stories and answering audience questions, all coinciding with a screening of “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”

Ohio Theatre

Sept. 30

39 E. State St., Downtown

Naked Classics

We dug into Naked Classics with ProMusica Chamber Orchestra Music Director David Danzmayr back in the spring, and it's clear he's a fan of the concept. Part fresh-and-fun music appreciation lesson (with some theory) and all concert, Danzmayr relishes the idea of providing this kind of look at a particular piece of music. Naked Classics is returning this fall to take a closer look at Beethoven's “Symphony No. 5,” perhaps the world's most well-known piece of classical music.

Southern Theatre

Oct. 6

21 E. Main St., Downtown

Shing Yin Khor

This visiting artist from Los Angeles will recreate one of her most recent installation works inside 934 Gallery this October. The piece by the illustrator/cartoonist/sculptor will include a divination board on the floor of the gallery with which patrons can interact.

934 Gallery

Opens Oct. 6

934 Cleveland Ave., Milo-Grogan

CJO 45th Anniversary Extravaganza

The Columbus Jazz Orchestra turns 45 this season, and Byron Stripling and the band have big things planned. The season kicks off with concerts featuring frequent CJO collaborator and composer/conductor extraordinaire John Clayton, sax-man Joshua Redman and Columbus native Micah Thomas. The programs will include a commissioned world premiere by Clayton featuring star-in-the-making Thomas at the piano.

Southern Theatre

Oct. 12-15

21 E. Main St., Downtown

“ACME Art Company Resurrected”

A one-time bastion of the Short North arts scene, ACME Art Gallery opened in 1987, eventually spawning other arts organizations and providing a space for many of Columbus' most popular artists. This fall, with the help of the Vanderelli Room, ACME marks its 30th anniversary. An exhibition will be bookended by two programs — the first a recreation of the gallery's popular Cafe Ashtray of the early '90s, and the second an art auction.

The Vanderelli Room

Oct. 13-21

218 McDowell St., Franklinton

“Parallel Connections”

BalletMet Columbus, the Ohio State University Department of Dance and the Wexner Center for the Arts will collaborate on this two-night contemporary-dance presentation. Professional and student dancers will perform separately (BalletMet offering James Kudelka's “The Man in Black” and OSU dancers presenting the work of Merce Cunningham) and then combine for a work by noted Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin titled “Minus 16.”

Mershon Auditorium

Oct. 20-21

1871 N. High St., Campus

“Beyond Impressionism”

A partnership with the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao brings this comprehensive exhibition to the Columbus Museum of Art. Comprising more than 120 individual pieces, “Beyond Impressionism” examines the Paris art scene of the late 19th century via the works of many of the greatest practitioners of Neo-Impressionism, Symbolism and Nabis. Visually stunning and thematically daring, this exhibit bridges a bevy of social, political and religious movements of the time.

Columbus Museum of Art

Oct. 21-Jan. 21, 2018

480 E. Broad St., Downtown


The hit movie and stage musical gets the Short North Stage treatment. You know the play is based loosely on the story of the Supremes; you know the music is big, beautiful, Motown-inspired pop-R&B; you know the story is full of the pitfalls, laughter and triumph that makes a stage musical enjoyable. But did you know that the singer of local soul-funk outfit MojoFlo, Amber Knicole, is booked to play Effie White?

Garden Theater

Oct. 26-Nov. 19

1187 N. High St., Short North


The Ohio State University School of Music's Opera and Lyric Theatre presents this never-before-produced work by early 1900s composer/ethnomusicologist Charles Wakefield Cadman. The feature is based on forms Cadman encountered in his time living with Omaha and Winnebago tribes of Native Americans. Katie Graber will discuss her research into this “Indianist” work, alternating with scenes and songs from the opera.

Weigel Auditorium

Nov. 1

1866 College Rd. N., Campus

Felicia DeRosa

DeRosa, a local artist and adjunct faculty member at CCAD who identifies as a trans woman, will be featured in this inventive Milo-Grogan gallery in November, which also happens to be National Trans Awareness Month.

934 Gallery

Opens Nov. 3

934 Cleveland Ave., Milo-Grogan

“Come Together”

New Vision Dance Co. marks the 50th anniversary of the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart Club Band with a program of choreography set to and inspired by the music of the Fab Four. World premiere works by founder and Artistic Director Melissa Gould and company dancers will be augmented by pianist Abhy Devalapura, the New Albany High School A Cappella Choir and other guest artists.

McCoy Center for the Arts

Nov. 4

100 E. Dublin-Granville Road, New Albany

Suzanne Silver

CCAD welcomes this multi-media artist to its Project Room. Silver blends traditional and non-traditional elements to examine what she calls “the structure of visual language,” including Morse code and semaphore, for example. Silver will be on campus for a presentation on Nov. 16.

CCAD Beeler Gallery

Nov. 9-Jan. 2, 2018

60 Cleveland Ave., Downtown

Masha Hamilton

This journalist/author's recent “What Changes Everything” is a work of fiction inspired by, incidentally, the armed and political conflict in Afghanistan, where Hamilton has worked as Director of Communications for the U.S. Embassy. The book weaves together stories of varied and disparate characters as Hamilton brings the impact of the unrest home to each.

Thurber House

Nov. 14

77 Jefferson Ave., Downtown

“Lines/Edges: Frank Stella on Paper”

The Pizzuti Collection will host two exhibitions this fall, including this collection of work by the American painter/sculptor/printmaker. The exhibition will feature experiments on paper that advanced Stella's Black series, color woodcuts and screen prints from the 1980s. Also presented will be the artist's “Moby Dick Deckle Edges,” a series of nine, large-scale works based on the Herman Melville novel.

Pizzuti Collection

Nov. 17-April 26, 2018

632 N. Park St., Short North

“Keep the Ghost: Lorenzo Doyle”

Columbus artist Lorenzo Doyle presents work in a variety of media created with the idea of preserving the memory of past sacrifices made and atrocities suffered — particularly in Nazi concentration camps during World War II — by and on behalf of the queer community in its struggle for affirmation and acceptance. Doyle balances this very real history with his fantastical and super-real approach to art-making.

The Vanderelli Room

Dec. 1-18

218 McDowell St., Franklinton

Wild Goose Creative 10th anniversary party

Last December, you read in these pages about this local arts incubator's 10th anniversary, and now they're actually going to celebrate it. (Actually, our story was about the kick-off of the 10th year, while this event marks its close.) Anyway, this will be a time to celebrate by doing some very Wild Goose-type stuff, like cooking (an “Iron Chef” contest) and art (the “Please Touch the Art” exhibition will be up during the party) and more.

Wild Goose Creative

Dec. 9

2491 Summit St., North Campus


The 20th season of Columbus Dance Theatre will include the 18th iteration of its now-classic holiday production of “Matchgirl.” The ballet provides a less-traditional take on seasonal performing arts, while having itself established a tradition. A full orchestra and choir accompany the performances.

Lincoln Theatre

Dec. 15-16

769 E. Long St., King-Lincoln

Roast of Santa Claus

Disney heroes and villains, superheroes of all stripes and other characters from pop culture — these have all been subject to roasting by the Columbus comedy community. So, as the holidays roll around, and since apparently no one is immune, have a laugh at the expense of the jolly ol' gift-bringer, why don't ya?

Backstage Bistro

Dec. 22

503 S. Front St., Brewery District