Things to do and see this week at Connecticut’s music, theater and spring festivals May 1-7 – Hartford Courant
From flower festivals to Cinco de Mayo, it’s a week of freshness and frolic in Connecticut’s arts scene as people once again head to the parks. There are also indoor shows that promise a degree of intimacy, from “A Night with Trey Songz” at Foxwoods to classic-leaning metal shredder Yngwie Malmsteen in a “listening room” environment at Infinity. Music Hall to the delicate notes of a Sitar in front of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.
It’s a beautiful weekend to smell the flowers. There’s the 39th Annual Fine Art & Flowers Fundraiser running April 29-May 1 at the Wadsworth Atheneum ($20, $17 student, $13 youth, $5 Atheneum members, residents and children of Hartford; thewadsworth. org/flowers/). There will be live music in the museum’s Avery Court on Sunday from 2-5pm. There’s also the Meriden Daffodil Festival on April 31 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and May 1 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Meriden’s Hubbard Park, with hundreds of thousands of daffodils in bloom, dozens of live bands and all the usual fun. of the festival, including rides, food, craft tents and more (daffodilfest.com; free).
Swedish neo-classical heavy metal guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen laments May 1 at 8 p.m. at Infinity Hall, 32 Front St., Hartford. $44 to $64. infinityhall.com.
In what will likely be a fascinating mix of classic fiction and contemporary social issues, Dr. Laura Skandera Trombley and Dr. Ann Ryan discuss “Mark Twain & Critical Race Theory” on May 4 at 7 p.m. virtually at Mark Twain House. Both Trombley and Ryan are scholars specializing in the life and work of Twain. Describing the event, the Mark Twain House said, “Instead of invoking false dichotomies, what we hope to accomplish here – using Twain’s writings as a single example – is to demonstrate how American it is to fight against “critical race theory”, a phrase that Twain would have found both weighty and imprecise. Nevertheless, it is a concept that inspired his major works. Free. Registration required. marktwainhouse.org.
The politically deep and peripatetic ensemble of immigrant musicians Gogol Bordello, led as always by Eugene Hütz, returns to New Haven, a city they have visited on several occasions since its formation in New York in 1999. The “Solidarity Tour” by Gogol Bordello comes to town May 5 at 8 p.m. for an all-ages show with opening act Amigo the Devil at College Street Music Hall, 238 College St., New Haven. $27.50 to $35. collegestreetmusichall.com.
Our picks of activities and places to visit this weekend
Some Cinco de Mayo events are outdoor celebrations involving several different restaurants and bars, as well as live music. A few of these May 5 street parties: Parkville Market, 1400 Park St., Hartford, where Tony Gonzalez and friends play on the patio from 6-9 p.m. (parkvillemarket.com). There and a special Cinco de Mayo edition of monthly “Eat in the Street” gatherings in downtown New London, with Latin salsa band Komboloko playing in Hygienic Art Park, as well as other “traveling entertainment” (downtownnewlondonassociation. com).
Michael Bolton returns to television on May 2 to defend his song “Beautiful World” as Connecticut’s representative in the semifinals of the “American Song Contest.” Then, on May 6, you can see Bolton sing his greatest hits live at 7:30 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena, 1 Mohegan Sun Blvd., Uncasville. $20 and $30. mohegansun.com.
The Hartford Symphony Orchestra’s Masterworks concert this month is “Scheherazade & Shankar.” It stands for “Scheherazade” by Rimsky-Korsakov and “Sitar Concerto No. 1” by Ravi Shankar. And who plays the sitar? Anupama Bhagwat. May 6-8 at the Belding Theater at The Bushnell, 166 Capitol Ave., Hartford. Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 3 p.m. $38-$72. hartfordsymphony.org.
Trey Songz has had eight hit albums over the past 17 years. the latest is 2020’s “Back Home.” The singer is taking part in a low-key “A Night with Trey Songs” tour, May 7 at 8 p.m. at the Premier Theater at Foxwoods Resort Casino, 350 Trolley Line Blvd., Mashantucket. $88 to $158. foxwoods.com.
Three New York stand-ups – Andy Pitz, Clayton Fletcher and Shaun Eli – converge on Infinity Hall, 20 Greenwoods Road West Norfolk on May 7 at 8 p.m. They are part of the “Ivy League of Comedy” tours. $28 to $38. infinityhall.com.
Irish dance sensation Riverdance was set to launch in Connecticut in mid-March 2020 when all theaters shut down. Two years later, the swirling, thumping and fiddling ensemble are finally here for what was once their 25th anniversary tour. May 6 at 8 p.m., May 7 at 1 and 7 p.m. and May 8 at 2 and 8 p.m. at Oakdale, 95 S. Turnpike Road, Wallingford. $35 to $85. concerts.livenation.com.
Christopher Arnott can be reached at email@example.com.