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Hey, Orillia. It's time to get all Jazzed up this weekend!

It you need a break from all that jazz, there are three special art openings in the Peter Street Arts District and OMAH is unveiling two new exhibits
Tom Allen credit CBC
Don’t miss the Orillia Concert Association’s first show of the season, Tom Allen’s Missing Pages, at the Orillia Opera House this Sunday. CBC photo

Hello and welcome to the Orillia Jazz Festival weekend!

All things jazzy gets started on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Orillia Opera House’s Studio Theatre with the festival launch show, featuring the Danny McErlain Trio with Chris Robinson and Peter Telford on sax and bass, respectively. Tickets for this special launch event are $20 and are available through the Opera House box office here.

From there on in, the fun only continues. There are numerous musical venues throughout Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, including Brewery Bay, Hog ‘n’ Penny, Mariposa Market, Grape and Olive, Rustica, Lake Country Grill, Fionn MacCool’s and Sanafir, all featuring great musicians, both local and not-so-local.

There are a few events I want to highlight. Eclectic Café is doing a Jazzy Dinner Friday with two sittings, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. You get a three-course meal and the smooth sounds of Paul Brooks and Mike Milner for only $60 plus tax. Drinks are available for purchase separately and a portion of the proceeds will be going to the Orillia Youth Centre. To make a reservation, please call 705-330-0101.

Friday night at 7 p.m. there is a Student Showcase at the Geneva Event Centre. Students from Twin Lakes, Patrick Fogarty, and Orillia Secondary School present an evening of jazz featuring stage bands from all three Orillia high schools. Admission is by donation and all proceeds go to the Orillia Youth Centre.

Saturday morning, head on out to the downtown Orillia Farmers’ Market and hear the Duncan Wilson Trio during the market. Duncan is a young Orillia musician who was recently featured at the Barrie Jazz Fest and has to be heard to be believed, so come check him out while you grab your market goodies for the week.

Oh, and that afternoon at the Opera House, some of the talented youth performers in town are invited to a youth solo competition from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Free admission and the winner will be featured at the Brassworks headline concert that night.

Speaking of which, Brassworks is featured at the Orillia Opera House at 7:30 p.m. and you can grab $25 plus fee tickets for that show right here.

Sunday, come listen to the music of Herbie Hancock with Lance Anderson and friends, at St. Paul’s Centre at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 and can be found here.

There are so many more great musical choices throughout the weekend, most of them free, so do check out all the options at the Orillia Jazz Festival official schedule here. Have an awesome jazzy weekend!

In case you need a break from all that jazz, there are three special art openings this Saturday as well in Orillia’s Peter Street Arts District. The Orillia Museum of Art and History (OMAH) is also celebrating the opening of two exhibits, from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Firstly, After Krieghoff. From the OMAH’s website: “After Krieghoff comprises a series of stereoscopic photo and video compositions using Ingrid Mayrhofer's own photographs of landscapes and objects together with skies appropriated from a Cornelius Krieghoff painting. The imagery responds to the ambiguity of the photographic record, adjusting the landscape much like Krieghoff did through genre painting.”

There is an artist’s talk with Mayrhofer from noon to 1 p.m. that day as well.

Secondly, OMAH is celebrating the opening of the exhibit Industrial Legacy: A History of Dorr-Oliver-Long Limited. This manufacturer has had a long and storied history in Orillia and no doubt Orillians will find lots to reminisce about in this special exhibit.

Also on Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m., Hibernation Arts across the road from OMAH is having an opening for its Fall Group Show. This show will be up until the end of November, do come check out all the artists’ work.

As promised in last week’s column, some notes on up-and-coming Orillia Performing Arts Forum (OPAF) events.

The OPAF is an umbrella organization of the large performing arts groups in Orillia, including Orillia Concert Band, Orillia Silver Band, Orillia Vocal Ensemble, The Cellar Singers, Jubilee Chorale, Mariposa Arts Theatre, Orillia Centre for Arts and Culture, Orillia Concert Association and Brassworks. Several of these groups have events coming up in the next few weeks.

The Orillia Silver Band is performing in Gravenhurst this Sunday at 2 p.m., tripping The Light Fantastic. This will be a lovely program suitable for all ages and tickets can be found here.

Next Sunday, Oct. 27 at 2:30 p.m. the Silver Band will perform its annual benefit concert for Hillcrest Lodge, at the Orillia Opera House. Both concerts will finish with a bang, with the 1812 Overture complete with cannons. Tickets for the OOH show are available here.

OPAF member The Cellar Singers has its first concert of 2019-20 on Sat. Oct. 26 at 3 p.m. at St. James’ Church at Peter and Coldwater streets. The performance will feature Haydn’s The Creation, not to be missed. This high-calibre choir conducted by Mitchell Pady will thrill you with its rendition of this classic piece, guaranteed. Tickets are $25 and are available online here.

A couple of OPAF groups are a little different, in that they bring performers into our area for us to enjoy, instead of putting on shows themselves. One such is the Orillia Concert Association, and the first concert in its five-concert series is Tom Allen’s Missing Pages, at the Orillia Opera House on Sun. Oct. 20 at 2:30 p.m. You can purchase series tickets for all five stellar shows for only $90 for adults and $30 for students, and see all the info for the rest of the series, through the website here.

Coming up shortly, in OPAF performances? Mariposa Arts Theatre’s Urinetown, and two great shows from Orillia Centre for Arts and Culture…more on those next week!

A couple of quick reminders: Call for Artists for the Art for Earth show at Hibernation Arts is due Oct. 25. Email for deets and to enter. And, don’t forget to nominate a deserving artist, musician, historian, cultural event or more, for the Orillia Regional Arts and Heritage Awards. All the details and nomination form can be found here. Nominations are due Oct. 25 at 4 p.m.

Lots of music in the bars this weekend, thanks to the Orillia Jazz Festival. At the Brownstone café, Thursday Pride Night in Orillia, Friday Zeus with special guest Ice Cream, Saturday Suitcase Sam. At the Hog ‘n’ Penny, Friday Alex Rabittson, Saturday at 2 p.m. Geoff Booth and friends, Saturday night Craig Mainprize, Sunday at 3 p.m. Open Jam with Sean Patrick and friends. At Fionn MacCool’s, Friday Linda Carone Duo. At the casino, Friday So You Think You Can Dance, Saturday America 50th Anniversary.

Don’t forget to send me your arts and culture news by Tuesdays at noon, to Thanks!