1) Esteemed jazz/soul/rock artist Boz Scaggs is set to fill the sylvan setting of Hartwood Acres with smooth melodies and flowing chord progressions. A veteran of over 50 years in the music industry, Scaggs rose to fame in the ’60s as the guitarist for the Steve Miller Band before gaining further acclaim as a solo act in the 70’s. These projects have earned the 73-year-old Scaggs significant accolades, including four top-20 albums and six top-20 singles. Major hits have included “Lowdown” and “Lido Shuffle.” Scaggs has compiled a discography of over 21 albums, including his latest, 2015’s A Fool to Care. The album rose to no. 1 on the Billboard Blues album chart and included duets with Lucinda Williams and Bonnie Raitt. He is playing here as part of the Allegheny County Summer Concert Series. Special guest is Jeff LeBlanc. 7:30 p.m. 4070 Middle Road, Allison Park.
2) Drivers start your engines! Fans lower your tailgates! It’s race day at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix race weekend in Schenley Park. One of America’s largest vintage race events. Today’s featured events include race heats from noon to 5 p.m. and car shows featuring international and British cars from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. The Chevrolet Camaro is the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix’s Marque of the Year 2017. One of the race’s founders, Alan Patterson, died recently, and he will be greatly missed. Charities benefiting from race proceeds are the Autism Society of Pittsburgh and the Allegheny Valley School. Free.
3) Why attend an opera that bombed at its world premiere? Because that was back in 1738, and tastes have changed since Handel’s Xerxes was first produced, turning a flop into a hot item prized for its weird comic genius. The problem was that audiences of the 1730s expected high opera to be either opera seria—serious and stately—or opera buffa, done for laughs. So when George Frideric Handel came along with one that looked serious on the surface, but had bizarre and ironic flashes of comedy erupting throughout, they didn’t say, “Oh, how innovative!” They said the Baroque-era equivalent of “WTF?” Today we love that stuff, and Pittsburgh Festival Opera’s production of Xerxes bodes to be memorable. In the title role, the company has countertenor Andrey Nemzer. If you saw (and heard) Quantum Theatre’s wild 2015 operatic adaptation of The Winter’s Tale, you will recall Nemzer as the succulently naughty rogue Autolycus. Now, as the Persian emperor Xerxes I, he presides over a court riddled with romantic shenanigans, including his own.2 p.m. Performances remaining are today and July 22. In the Falk Auditorium at Winchester Thurston School, 555 Morewood Ave. (but enter the side door on Ellsworth), Oakland. (MV)