The national tour of the Broadway smash “The Color Purple” makes a stop at the DuPont Theatre September 14-19. Buckle up. This is an emotional ride. The stage version is faithful to Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, which tells the story of Celie, a woman who overcomes the kind of adversity most of us could never imagine. But by surviving the dark and seeing the light, Celie celebrates life in a way most of us could never imagine. Add a soulful and soulfully sung Tony-nominated score, and you learn why gospel music makes you feel glad to be alive. For more, visit duponttheatre.com, or call 656-4401. —Maria Hess
Page 2: It’s Back
Thousands panicked when the Brandywine Festival of the Arts was canceled last year. After all, fall is not fall without it. But it’s back, September 11-12, just in time to celebrate its 50th birthday. Expect a remarkable showing from hundreds of juried artists exhibiting one-of-a-kind work in majestic Brandywine Park. For more, visit brandywinearts.com, or call 690-5555.
Page 3: Soul Music
Contemporary singer-songwriters Marc Cohn and Suzanne Vega share the stage at The Grand September 26. This is an interesting pairing. Cohn, known for his Grammy Award-winning ballad, “Walking in Memphis,” as well as his contemplative and complex storytelling skills, joins Vega, a brilliant lyricist and singer who is considered a leading figure of the folk music revival of the early 1980s. Both have done their share of soul searching, so they should guide their audience down an emotional path. For more, visit thegrandwilmington.org, or call 652-5577.
Page 4: Summer’s Over, And All That Jazz
Summer is over, and there is no better evidence of that fact than the Bethany Beach Jazz Funeral procession down the boardwalk on September 6 (Labor Day). The event features the Dixie Cats, Jazz Funeral Irregulars and the Downtown Dixieland Band. For the past few years, the funeral has been dedicated to the victims of Hurricane Katrina. This year, the funeral’s 25th anniversary, the event again pays homage to the people living in and near New Orleans who, after surviving Katrina, now face years of hardship as a result of the BP oil spill disaster. For more, visit townofbethanybeach.com, or call 539-8011.