Molly Ringwald—in full swing, August 2017 Cape Cod LIFE | capecodlife.com

“I wasn’t really interested in becoming a pop star—it wasn’t really a thing in my era—so I felt that I had to make the choice, and I chose acting,” Ringwald says. “But singing is always something that I just did for fun, and I had it in the back of my head that I’d like to put a group together to explore performing this music I love as an adult.”

Out of all of her creative endeavors, Ringwald, who has recently appeared in ABC Family’s The Secret Life of the American Teenager and CW’s new series Riverdale, says singing gives her the most joy and “fires up” a different part of her brain. However, she also finds that acting, writing and singing are ultimately connected. “I approach every song the way I do material as an actress,” she explains. “I look at the words musically much in the same way I do as a writer, so somehow it feels similar but different. Jazz is very collaborative and requires a lot of listening, which is actually a great exercise for an actor. I constantly feel like I am learning from the incredible musicians I get to work with.”

When Ringwald takes the stage in Provincetown, attendees can experience her take on traditional jazz and hear selections from Except Sometimes—which features standards like “I’ll Take Romance” and “The Very Thought of You,” as well as a jazzy, nostalgia-inducing rendition of Simple Minds’ 1985 hit “Don’t You (Forget About Me),” a song forever linked to The Breakfast Club. “My shows are always a little different depending on the audience,” Ringwald says, “but generally I would say they’re fun, at times emotional, and people tend to feel good after—I realize that sounds a bit like therapy.”

Looking ahead, Ringwald plans to release a new album, recorded live from a weeklong run at the iconic Birdland Jazz Club in New York, and this fall she and her band will perform in China for the first time.

The Crown & Anchor is located at 247 Commercial Street, Provincetown; and Cotuit Center for the Arts is at 4404 Route 28, Cotuit. For more information about the festival, visit provincetownjazzfestival.org.