7 events you should check out in Dayton this weekend

The big entertainment news this week is the beginning of new seasons at Fraze Pavilion in Kettering, Rose Music Center in Huber Heights and Levitt Pavilion in Dayton. However, there are plenty of other alternatives, including live theater, stand-up comedy and the first of two weeks of home games for the Dayton Dragons. Here is more information on these and other events.



1. “Friend Art”

When: Through May 29; 7 p.m. Thursday; 8 p.m. Friday; 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2 p.m. Sunday

Where: PNC Arts Annex, 46 W. Second St., Dayton

Details: Adulting is hard. Sometimes the path you’re on feels utterly incomplete and the only option is to quickly change course to avoid wallowing deeper in despair. In Sofia Alvarez’s edgy, funny and insightful 2016 contemporary comedy “Friend Art,” excellently presented in its local premiere by The Nerve under the breezy, intimate co-direction of Jenna Valyn and K.B. Scheiding, four New York City friends come to terms with living life at a standstill. In spite of the fact that one of them recently found fame in a rock band, none of them are truly content or emotionally fulfilled. However, situations shift when aspiring lawyer Kevin (A.J. Breslin, wonderfully authentic and emboldened) attempts a new start by helping Lil (formerly portrayed with expressive glee by Sha-Lemar Davis and now portrayed by Scheiding) elevate her kooky performance art, which he describes as “friend art” or art that only one’s friends will support. Thanks to Breslin’s astute, snappy delivery, Kevin’s brutally blunt and humorous dissection of Lil’s craft and capabilities is one of the production’s strongest moments. A delightfully laidback Chris Hahn as musician Nate and a revelatory Lauren Everett as Kevin’s faithful-turned-infuriated fiancé Molly complete the cast. In addition, Skyler McNeely’s nostalgic original music expertly conjures the essence of Britney Spears (her “I’m a Slave 4 U” phase) with a nod to Lady Gaga for extra measure. Overall, “Friend Art” is another appealing testament to The Nerve’s off-Broadway-esque ability to provide fresh, daring and relevant theater unlike any other troupe in Dayton. Take a chance on something new and give this unique, risk-taking and vital company your attention and support this weekend. They need to see you now more than ever.

Cost: $22

FYI: The play is performed in 1 hour and 30 minutes without intermission. Patrons are reminded the play contains strong language and portrayals of drug use.

More info: daytonlive.org



2. Steve Martin & Martin Short

When: 8 p.m. Saturday, May 28

Where: Fraze Pavilion, 695 Lincoln Park Blvd., Kettering

Details: Superstar duo Steve Martin and Martin Short, who launched its first live musical variety show, “A Very Stupid Conversation,” in 2016, opens the summer season at Fraze Pavilion. The current “You Won’t Believe What They Look Like Today Tour” also features Jeff Babko with Alison Brown & Fair Weather.

Cost: $49 lawn & terrace, $129 orchestra and $139 plaza in advance, $54 lawn & terrace, $134 orchestra and $144 plaza day of show

More info: 937-296-3300 or www.fraze.com



3. Miami Valley Symphony Orchestra featuring pianist Awadagin Pratt

When: 7 p.m. Friday, May 27

Where: Kettering Seventh Day Adventist Church, 3939 Stonebridge Rd., Dayton

Details: Awadagin Pratt, professor of piano at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, will perform as soloist for the Second and Third movements of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1 and will also conduct the orchestra in Beethoven’s dramatic Coriolan Overture. The acclaimed Pratt has performed around the country and internationally, including three times at the White House.

Cost: Free but tickets are required.

More info: mvso.org



ExploreAcclaimed pianist headlines Miami Valley Symphony Orchestra concert this weekend

4. Heritage Day

When: Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 29

Where: Carillon Historical Park, 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton

Details: Dayton History presents the patriotic celebration featuring historical demonstrations, miniature train rides, live music and special activities. Carillon Park Concert Band performs at 2 p.m., followed by the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra at 3 p.m.

Cost: $12 adults (18-59), $10 (seniors 60 and older), $8 children (3-17) and active military, retirees, veterans and reservists with valid I.D. Free admission for Dayton History members

More info: 937-293-2841 or www.daytonhistory.org



5. Dayton Dragons

When: 7:05 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 1:05 p.m. Sunday, May 31 through June 5

Where: Day Air Ballpark, 220 N. Patterson Blvd., Dayton

Details: The Dayton Dragons continue its winning ways during the first season with new manager Bryan LaHair. The team, which has been in first place in the Midwest League East, begins a homestand against the South Bend Cubs.

Cost: Single-game tickets $10-$20

More info: 937-228-2287 or www.milb.com/dayton



6. Donnell Rawlings

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and 7:15 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. Saturday, May 27 and 28

Where: Wiley’s Comedy Club, 101 Pine St., Dayton

Details: The actor-comedian has appeared in feature films, hosted television programs and done voiceover work but he continues to do stand-up. Rawlings, who recently appeared in the HBO series, “Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty,” returns to town for a two-night stand at Ohio’s longest-operating comedy club.

Cost: $45

More info: 937-224-5653 or wileyscomedy.com

ExploreSuperstar comedy duo brings show to the Fraze



7. “The Old Man and the Old Moon”

When: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 3 p.m. Sunday opening weekend, and 8 p.m. Friday, 5 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday the following weekends, May 27 through June 12

Where: Dayton Theatre Guild, 430 Wayne Ave., Dayton

Details: Jeff Sams directs a new local production of “The Old Man and the Old Moon” with book, music and lyrics by Pigpen Theatre Co.

Cost: $21 adults, $19 seniors and $14 students

More info: 937-278-5993 or daytontheatreguild.org

Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or e-mail at donthrasher100@gmail.com.

Russell Florence Jr. also contributed to this report.

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