For years, the buzz around these parts has been that the Old Pueblo is an arts wasteland in the summer.
Well, the buzz has been busted.
There's music, theater, art. If you're willing to venture out of your air-conditioned haven and wander into an air-conditioned theater, concert hall or museum, you'll be well rewarded.
Take a look at what's happening over the sweltering days of summer - and be sure to check Caliente every Thursday and The Arts every Friday for updates.
All Together Theatre, Live Theatre Workshop's family arm, stages kid-friendly shows that invite participation, attention and a giggly good time. Performances are at 1 p.m. Sundays and usually last about one hour - just long enough to satisfy, short enough for a young 'un's attention span. It's at LTW, 5317 E. Speedway, 327-4242. Tickets are $5-$8.
• June 6-July 25 - "Rockin' Cinderella," a take on the classic children's tale, bringing it smack dab into the 1950s. Adapted and written by the talented team of Amanda and Richard Gremel.
Arizona Onstage Productions will brighten up the summer with Broadway tunes and a musical - musicals are what the company does particularly well. Performances are at the Cabaret Theatre in the Temple of Music and Art, 330 S. Scott Ave. 882-6574.
• July 17 - "Broadway Barks!" A musical celebration with Broadway tunes. A benefit for The Humane Society of Southern Arizona. Showtime is 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $20-$25.
• Aug. 13-29 - "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin, is a musical comedy about a middle school spelling bee. Funny, great music, and even a little audience participation. It's at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 pm. Sundays, with a 7:30 p.m. preview on Aug. 12. Tickets are $32.50, with discounts available.
Arizona Rose Theatre takes its musical magic to the Silverbell Cortaro Park, 7548 N. Silverbell Road, in Marana. Performances are at 7:30 p.m., and all are free. 888-0509.
• June 19 - "Celebrate Broadway: Fairytales," music from shows based on fairy tales.
• July 24 - "Broadway Classics."
• Aug. 21 - "Broadway Cinema," songs from films.
Etcetera, the late-night arm of Live Theatre Workshop, offers night owls an often edgy alternative. Performances are at 10:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights at LTW, 5317 E. Speedway. Tickets are $10. 327-4242.
• July 1-17 - "Mr. Marmalade," a delicious black comedy about dealing with childhood when childhood is too awful to deal with. By Noah Haidle.
• Aug. 5-21 - "The Eating Disorder Talent Show." Christopher Johnson wrote and will perform in this biographical play.
The Gaslight Theatre is a complete giggle - you get to sing along, cheer the hero, boo the villain, indulge in free popcorn and have a plain ol' good time. The Gaslight is at 7010 E. Broadway. 886-9428. Showtimes can vary. Tickets are $17.95, with discounts available.
• Through June 12 - "The Son of the Sheik" has romance, snake charmers and flying carpets. Good and bad guys, too.
•June 17-Aug. 21 - "Space Wars." As Gaslight folk say, "May the farce be with you."
Live Theatre Workshop's summer shows often offer laughs, and sometimes food for thought. Shows are at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. Sundays (opening week often has a preview on Thursday and Friday - at a reduced rate, too) at 5317 E. Speedway. Tickets are $18, with discounts available. 327-4242.
• June 18-20 - "Love Letters," A.R. Gurney's sentimental love story is told through letters between two friends.
• June 24-July 25 - "Cloud 9" by Caryl Churchill is a time-shifting comedy that makes a good mockery of hypocrisy.
• July 29-Aug. 29 - "A Thousand Clowns," Herb Gardner's comedy about a bachelor uncle raising his nephew.
The volunteer Arizona Symphonic Winds, under the direction of Conductor László Veres, kicks off its 21st season of outdoor concerts on Saturday. Concerts are at 7 p.m. Saturdays through June 5 at the Udall Park's László Veres Amphitheater, 7200 E. Tanque Verde Road. Admission is free; www.azsymwinds.org
• Saturday - A pair of soloists will perform a clarinet-flute duet.
• May 22 - Tucson Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Aaron Boyd performs one of the most romantic violin concertos written, while politician and tenor Rodney Glassman sings Frank Sinatra favorites.
• May 29 - A pair of talented high school student cellists perform a concerto for twin cellos while mime Rick Wamer makes Winds history as the first mime to perform with the ensemble.
• June 5 - Clarinetist Carl Fetkenhour will solo, and the Winds will perform a premiere of a local composer's march.
St. Andrew's Bach Society has become the go-to place for a classical music summertime fix. This year, the group, which features some of Tucson's finest musical talent, returns to its Bach roots. Concerts are at Grace St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 2331 E. Adams St. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students at the door (cash or check only). "Bach Lives II" tickets are $15, or $10 for students. Details: 869-2770 or standrewsbach.org
• June 6 - "The Classic Horn," featuring Johanna Lundy, principal horn of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra. Lundy performs Haydn's Horn Trio and Mozart's Horn Quartet with violinist Ben Nisbet, violists Ann Weaver and Emma Noel Votapek, and cellist Anne Gratz.
• June 27 - Guitarist Ismael Barajas, "Encore!"
• July 11 - Musica Sonora: "L'Amour," music from the French Renaissance and Baroque.
• Aug. 13 - "Bach Lives II, Part I," featuring Bach's harpsichord sonatas performed by early-music specialist Elizabeth Farr. Violinist Steven Moeckel also performs Bach's Sonata for Violin and Harpsichord No. 2 in A major; cellist Mark Votapek tackles his Sonata for Violoncello and Harpsichord No. 2 in D major; and oboist Lindabeth Binkley takes on the Sonata for Oboe and Harpsichord in G minor.
• Aug. 15 - "Bach Lives II, Part II," with harpsichordist Elizabeth Farr, joined by the St. Andrew's Bach Society Chamber Orchestra, led by Music Director Steven Moeckel, playing Bach's Concerto for Harpsichord in D minor. Moeckel and Binkley join for Bach's Concerto for Violin and Oboe in C-minor.
The Tucson Pops Orchestra is a professional ensemble led by László Veres that performs 7 p.m. Sundays at Reid Park's DeMeester Outdoor Performance Center, South Country Club Road, north of East 22nd Street. Admission is free, but donations are accepted; www.tucsonpops.org
• Sunday - The Catalina Foothills High School Steel Band joins the orchestra in a program of big-band works.
• May 23 - The Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus joins the orchestra.
• May 30 - Memorial Day takes on "John Philip Sousa in the Park"; Rodney Glassman, local politician and classically trained vocalist, will sing Neil Diamond hits.
• June 6 - Vocalist Nancy Davis Booth returns.
• June 13 - Program to be announced.
Center for Creative Photography is a treasure-trove - an archive representing some of the most important photographers of the last century. You can even request a special viewing of a particular photographer's works: Call 621-7968 to set up an appointment. The center is at 1030 N. Olive Road, in the UA Fine Arts Complex, North Park Avenue and East Speedway. 621-7968.
• June 5-Aug. 1 - "West and West: Joe Deal." Deal uses 19th-century survey photography as inspiration for his images of the Great Plains.
The Tucson Museum of Art has great galleries to wander through and one of the best gift shops in town. It's free for members, and the first Sunday of the month is free for everyone. Otherwise, admission is $8, with discounts available. It's at 140 N. Main Ave. 624-2333.
• July 17-Sept. 26 - "Into the Void: Abstract Art, 1944-2008." Works from the museum's permanent collection.
• July 17-Oct. 13 - "Thanks for Being With Us: Contemporary Art From the Douglas Nielsen Collection." Nielsen is a University of Arizona dance professor, choreographer and passionate collector of contemporary art. This show represents 40 years of collecting.
The University of Arizona Museum of Art is a rich collection of art spanning centuries. Don't miss "The Altarpiece of Ciudad Rodrigo." It's $5 to get in, and free to students, faculty members and staffers. 621-7567.
• May 27-Oct. 31 - "Metropolis." Fritz Lang's classic futuristic film inspired this exhibit. To put the works in context, the 1927 German film will play continuously.
• Ongoing - "Portraits and Figurative Works From the UAMA Permanent Collections."
• Saturday - Carrie Underwood at the Tucson Arena.
• May 21 - Joe Nichols at Desert Diamond Casino.
• May 22 - Chayanne at Casino del Sol's AVA.
• May 22 - Pat Benatar at Desert Diamond Casino.
• May 23 - KLPXFest at the Pima County Fairgrounds.
• June 1- The Deftones at the Rialto.
• June 4-5 - Comedian Maria Bamford at Laffs Comedy Caffe.
• June 5 - Old Blind Dogs at the Temple of Music & Art. 622-2823.
• June 5 - Tony Bennett at AVA.
• July 21 - Robert Plant and the Band of Joy at AVA.
• July 21 - Elton John at Tucson Arena.
• July 21 - The New Pornographers at the Rialto.