25 Things to do in Metro Detroit This March

Grammy-Award winner Billie Eilish, country group Little Big Town, and jazz opera ’Champion’ are in town

Big names in entertainment are coming to metro Detroit this month. From musical artists like Billie Eilish, Blake Shelton, and Little Big Town to comedians Jon Lovitz and Carrot Top and performers with the Dance Theatre of Harlem as well as the jazz opera Champion, here’s what you won’t want to miss.


Champion - March metro detroit
Champion photograph courtesy of Scott Suchman

Champion

Based on the true story of Emile Griffith, this jazz opera follows the world champion boxer as he fights his way to the top while also battling loneliness, guilt, prejudice, and questions about his own sexuality. The genre-bending music for Champion was composed by six-time Grammy-winning jazz trumpeter and seasoned film scorer Terence Blanchard. What results is a poignant tale of reflection, regret, and morality. Through April 20. $35+. Detroit Opera House, 1526 Broadway St., Detroit; 313-237-7464; michiganopera.org

The Warrior Queen of Jhansi

This historical drama recounts the story of Rani of Jhansi — a freedom fighter who lead India in battle against the British Empire. Her steadfast patriotism earned her the title Joan of Arc of the East. Directed by Indian Bharatanatyam dancer Swati Bhise, the film runs 102 minutes and is rated R. March 1. $5+. Flint Institute of Arts, 1120 E. Kearsley St., Flint; 810-234-1695; flintarts.org

The Revivalists

The American rock band out of Louisiana has been churning out hits like “Soul Fight” and “Wish I Knew You” since 2007. Fans should expect to hear all their favorites when the band stops in the Detroit. March 6. $30+. The Fillmore Detroit, 2115 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-961-5451; thefillmoredetroit.com

Marsha Ambrosius

The British singer-songwriter — who staked her claim in the R&B world as the co-writer of Michael Jackson’s Butterflies — embarks on a U.S. tour in support of her most recent album, 2018’s NYLA. Expect renditions of hits like “Say Yes” and “Hope,” along with songs she sang as part of the girl duo Floetry with fellow R&B vocalist Natalie Stewart. March 7. $49+. Detroit Opera House, 1526 Broadway St., Detroit; 313-237-7464; michiganopera.org

Mod Sun

Bloomington, Minnesota, native Derek Smith, better known as Mod Sun, claims many titles, including rapper, rock musician, and poet. The Midwestern Renaissance man, whose debut album, Look Up, landed at No. 1 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart, draws upon the influences of artists like Bob Dylan and Jim Morrison. He sets off on a country-wide tour this month. March 9. $20+. The Shelter, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit; 313-961-8961; saintandrewsdetroit.com

Little Big Town - march metro detroit
Little Big Town photograph courtesy of 313 Presents

Little Big Town

On the heels of a Carnegie Hall performance and the release of its ninth studio album, Nightfall, the three-time Grammy-winning country foursome will be hitting some of the country’s biggest theaters this season. The group’s vocalists — Karen Fairchild, Kimberly Schlapman, Phillip Sweet, and Jimi Westbrook — will be accompanied by pop-country singer Caitlyn Smith. March 12. $29+. Fox Theatre, 2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-3200; 313presents.com

Louie Anderson

While he may be most recognized as the jovial instigator who used to host Family Feud, best-selling author and comedian Louie Anderson has built a career out of winning the laughs and hearts of fans across the country. Anderson draws heavily upon his childhood in Minnesota, making his routines especially relatable to fellow Midwesterners here in Detroit. March 14. $35. Royal Oak Music Theatre, 318 W. Fourth St., Royal Oak; 248-399-2980; royaloakmusictheatre.com

Zac Brown Band

The multi-platinum, three-time Grammy-winning country group’s summer 2019 tour was so successful they decided to extend it into 2020. This year’s leg of The Owl Tour will feature music from the band’s sixth studio album, as well as supporting performances from folkie Amos Lee, pop vocalist Poo Bear, and contemporary artist Sasha Sirota. March 14. $40+. Little Caesars Arena, 2645 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-7000; 313presents.com

Dance Theatre of Harlem

In honor of its 50th anniversary, the ballet company will undertake a touring tribute to African American culture this spring. The program will feature numbers directed by Houston Ballet director Stanton Welch and Claudia Schreier, the acclaimed ballerina and former artistic co-director of Juilliard Opera’s tour of Dido and Aeneas. March 14 and 15. $30+. Detroit Opera House, 1526 Broadway St., Detroit; 313-237-7464; michiganopera.org

Viola Frey - march metro detroit
Viola Frey Art © Artists’ Legacy Foundation/Licensed by ARS, New York

Monumental: The Art of Viola Frey

California-based ceramicist, painter, and drawer Viola Frey was a prolific artist who generated an extensive repertoire of works over the course of her five-decade career. This month through mid-June, the Flint Institute of Arts will display pieces from her Western Civilization series, many of which are being exhibited in the Midwest for the first time. March 14-June 14. No cost with museum admission. Flint Institute of Arts, 1120 E. Kearsley St., Flint; 810-234-1695; flintarts.org

Alessandra Ferri

The Italian ballerina is one of the few professional ballerinas to be honored with the title of prima ballerina assoluta — a rank awarded to the most exceptional ballerinas of a generation. The Michigan Opera Theatre will show excerpts of Ferri’s most breathtaking moments of artistry and showmanship as part of its Dance Film Series. March 17. $10. Detroit Opera House, 1526 Broadway St., Detroit; 313-237-7464; michiganopera.org

Carrot Top

Orange-haired comedian Scott “Carrot Top” Thompson describes his humor as a modern-day mix of George Carlin, Steven Wright, and Gallagher. But his creative use of props is what really sets him apart. When he hits the road, his prop collection fills 35 trunks. He’ll dip into his stash for a one-night stop in Detroit. March 18. $32+. Sound Board at MotorCity Casino Hotel, 2901 Grand River Ave., Detroit; 313-309-4700; 313presents.com

Eli Young Band

After having three records reach the top five on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, the band was due for a greatest hits album. This Is Eli Young Band: Greatest Hits, released last year, is stacked with favorites like “Love Ain’t,” “Drunk Last Night,” and “Saltwater Gospel.” Fans can expect those and other hits at The Fillmore this month. March 19. $25+. The Fillmore Detroit, 2115 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-961-5451; thefillmoredetroit.com

Nick Cannon Presents MTV Wild N’ Out Live - march metro detroit
Nick Cannon Presents MTV Wild N’ Out Live photograph courtesy of 313 Presents

Nick Cannon Presents MTV Wild N’ Out Live

MTV’s hip-hop sketch comedy show is hitting the road. Attendees will enjoy stand-up routines from cast members including DC Young Fly, Karlous Miller, and Justina Valentine. March 19. $30+. Little Caesars Arena, 2645 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-7000; 313presents.com

Blake Shelton

Accompanied by rising country duo The Bellamy Brothers, platinum-selling entertainer and genre superstar Blake Shelton will perform at Little Caesars Arena this month in support of his most recent album, Fully Loaded: God’s Country. The 2019 album’s title track, “God’s Country,” became Shelton’s 14th to hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. March 21. $49+. Little Caesars Arena, 2645 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-7000; 313presents.com

Festival of Laughs

Each year, the Festival of Laughs unites the nation’s beloved comedians in one riotous show. This year, Sommore, Gary Owen, Lavell Crawford, and Don “DC” Curry will bring their own unique styles to the Fox Theatre. March 21. $64+. Fox Theatre, 2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-3200; 313presents.com

Jon Lovitz

The Emmy-nominated actor is best known for his iconic Saturday Night Live characters the Master Thespian and Tommy Flanagan, pathological liar. You might also know him as the voice of Jay Sherman in the ’90s animated sitcom The Critic. But Lovitz is no stand-up newbie, either. He’s bold, snarky, and unafraid to wade into contentious topics. Definitely don’t bring the kids — Lovitz’s shtick is rated R. March 22. $35. Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle, 310 S. Troy St., Royal Oak; 248-542-9900; comedycastle.com

Billie Eilish - march metro detroit
Billie Eilish photograph courtesy of 313 Presents

Billie Eilish

With her whisper-soft vocals and minimalist production, Billie Eilish was pop’s most remarkable breakout in 2019. In support of her multiplatinum album, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, the multi-Grammy-winning 18-year-old is embarking on her first arena-headling tour, which lands at Little Caesars this month. Eilish is likely to perform most of her debut’s tracks, including the inescapable No. 1 hit “Bad Guy.” Duh! March 23. $40+. Little Caesars Arena, 2645 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-3333; 313presents.com

Third Eye Blind

Best known for ’90s hit singles “Semi-Charmed Life,” “Jumper,” and “How’s It Going to Be,” the multiplatinum pop rock band is touring in support of its sixth studio album, Screamer, released last year. March 23. $35+. Royal Oak Music Theatre, 318 W. Fourth St., Royal Oak; 248-399-2980; royaloakmusictheatre.com

Kivi Rogers

Actor and comedian Kivi Rodgers has guest starred on shows including The West Wing, Everybody Loves Raymond, VIP, Diagnosis Murder, and Dharma and Greg. Now he’s taking his observational stand-up on the road. March 26-28. $10+. Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle, 310 S. Troy St., Royal Oak; 248-542-9900; comedycastle.com

Vérité - march metro detroit
Vérité photograph courtesy of Live Nation

Vérité

New York singer songwriter Vérité began performing at local venues during elementary school after becoming inspired by bands like Green Day, Nirvana, and The Cranberries. She has since worked her way up to festivals including Firefly and Lollapalooza, curating an electro-tinged, indie-pop sound that has been called haunting and ethereal. March 27. $15+. Saint Andrew’s Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit; 313-961-8961; saintandrewsdetroit.com

Rain

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ Abbey Road album, popular tribute band Rain will perform at the Fox Theatre. The group employs elaborate sets and costumes to bring to life such favorites as “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” “Hard Day’s Night,” and “Hey Jude.” March 27. $30+. Fox Theatre, 2211 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-471-3200; 313presents.com

West Side Story

The Oscar-winning musical adaptation is a 1950s take on the tale of Romeo and Juliet, featuring star-crossed lovers from rival New York City gangs. VIP tickets include a meet-and-greet with George Chakiris, who plays Bernardo. March 27-29. $10+. Redford Theatre, 17360 Lahser, Detroit; 313-537-2560; redfordtheatre.com

Dance for Mother Earth Powwow

University of Michigan Museum of Art experts will present at the university’s 48th annual festival celebrating Native American culture, sharing works and knowledge from the museum’s exhibit on Inuit art. March 28 and 29. $5+. Skyline High School, 2552 N. Maple Road, Ann Arbor; powwow.umich.edu

Kenny G

His practice of incorporating more modern elements in his smooth jazz sound — he’s collaborated with artists like Weezer and Robin Thicke — has made Grammy-winning saxophonist Kenny G. one of the best-selling artists of all time. March 29. $45+. Sound Board at MotorCity Casino Hotel, 2901 Grand River Ave., Detroit; 313-309-4700; 313presents.com

Facebook Comments