Arts & Culture

Want a summer concert? Three series to pick from in Tacoma, Gig Harbor, Parkland

Jazz Under the Stars in the Mary Baker Russell Amphitheater at PLU in 2014.
Jazz Under the Stars in the Mary Baker Russell Amphitheater at PLU in 2014. Pacific Lutheran University

Summer and music go together like cocktails and ice. Three series in Tacoma, Gig Harbor and Parkland offer classical, jazz and contemporary music in a church, a museum and an outdoor amphitheater. Listen Live at Lunch at Tacoma’s First Lutheran Church and Jazz Under the Stars at Pacific Lutheran University are both free, while Third Thursdays at the Harbor History Museum in Gig Harbor offers happy hour drinks and nibbles.

Third Thursdays

The Harbor History Museum kicks off a new third Thursday evening concert series with Elijah Bossenbroek, U.S. Marine Corps veteran and local pianist. Bossenbroek plays lush piano compositions at festivals around the country.

There’s a happy hour before the concert, with cash bar and free nibbles.

When: Happy hour 6 p.m., concerts 7 p.m., starting June 16.

Where: Harbor History Museum, 4121 Harborview Drive, Gig Harbor.

Cost: $18 members; $25 nonmembers.

Upcoming dates: World music Trio Guadalevin (July 28); singer-songwriter Richard Twice (Aug. 18); blues guitarist Steve Stefanowicz (Sept. 15).

Information: 253-858-6722,

Listen Live at Lunch

Wednesday the Aronoff Chamber Players play a Beethoven string quartet and the Schumann piano quintet to start the weekly Listen Live at Lunch series, returning to First Lutheran in downtown Tacoma.

When: Noon every Wednesday, June 15-Aug. 17.

Where: First Lutheran Church, 524 S. I St., Tacoma.

Cost: Free.

Upcoming dates: Harpist Catherine Case and flutist Jennifer Rhyne (June 22); prizewinning teen pianist Leah Deobald (June 29); patriotic and French music from First Lutheran organist Una Hwang (July 6); piano student recital (July 13); violinist Maria Sampen and violist Tim Christie (July 27); tenor Brian Minnick and pianist Una Hwang playing Schubert’s “Die Schöne Mullerin” (July 27); bassist Evan Hulbert with pianist Duane Hulbert (Aug. 3); lieder and opera favorites by soprano Allison Pohl, cellist Alistair MacRae and pianist Duane Hulbert (Aug. 17).


Jazz Under the Stars

Pacific Lutheran University’s annual free Jazz Under the Stars begins July 7 with the Casey McGill Orchestra, a vintage swing band from Seattle. Bring a picnic dinner, a lawn chair or blanket, and kick back for a balmy summer evening. Organist Paul Tegels plays intermission concerts inside Lagerquist Hall on the Fuchs pipe organ, and after the last three concerts, PLU physics department will offer stargazing at the university’s Keck Observatory. Concerts held inside Lagerquist Hall if raining.

When: 7 p.m. Thursdays July 7-Aug. 11.

Where: Outdoor amphitheater, Mary Baker Russell Music Center, PLU, 12180 Park Ave. S., Tacoma.

Cost: Free.

Includes: Free coffee; wine, beer and snacks for sale. Order dinner by 6 p.m. Wednesday at 208 Garfield and they’ll deliver to the concert.

Upcoming events: 3 Cent Stamp string trio (July 14); Olympia Jazz Tentette (July 21); PLU alum and New York vocalist Wendy Gilles (July 28); Tacoma singer Eugenie Jones (Aug. 4); Seattle vocalist Greta Matassa (Aug. 11).


Rosemary Ponnekanti: 253-597-8568, @rose_ponnekanti