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August 20, 2010

Variety & Pizzazz: Rose-Hulman opens Hatfield Hall to expanded Performing Arts Series

TERRE HAUTE — Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology is offering crowd-pleasing entertainers, first-ever musical theater productions, the beauty of ballet, young and talented musical groups, and family-oriented shows through an expanded Performing Arts Series that will make the college’s Hatfield Hall Theater a very busy place.

Wabash Valley and campus arts enthusiasts of all genres will be able to enjoy 19 shows — the largest and most diverse line up of entertainment in series history.

“The Wabash Valley has enthusiastically embraced the variety of our past shows, and the atmosphere of our intimate theater has encouraged us to expand our offerings to meet our patrons’ growing demand for world-class entertainment,” states Hatfield Hall Director Bunny Nash. “While our calendar looks a little different, our focus remains to fulfill the audience’s expectations of talented artists, personal attention and affordable ticket prices … We believe that the unique and engaging experience of a live performance should not be an uncommon luxury but a valuable part of everyone’s life.”

Hoping to heighten the experience, the series has added a dinner and a show option, featuring a meal at J. Ford’s Black Angus restaurant, for four signature events. And, a Global Lens Film Series during the fall and winter will promote cross-cultural understanding through cinema.

The Performing Arts Series begins on Sept. 11 with the hot young latin band, Tiempo Libre, from Miami, and also features popular entertainer Jim Brickman (Oct. 22), country music artist Kathy Mattea (Nov. 13), the theatrical productions ‘S Wonderful (Oct. 10) and The 39 Steps (March 25), the Leahy Family’s Christmas Show (Dec. 8), the Russian National Ballet presenting Chopiniana and Romeo and Juliet, and jazz piano prodigy Hiromi (Sept. 24), The House Jacks (Jan. 14), Punch Brothers (Jan. 21) and The Umbilical Brothers (Feb. 18).

The Family Discovery Series features such family-friendly shows as Mad Science Presents Star Trek Live! (March 20), Russian clown Gregory Popovich and his comedy pet theater (Jan. 29), 3-D juggler Mark Nizer (Nov. 21) and Doktor Kaboom (Feb. 2) for a night of scientific discovery.

Season and individual tickets go on sale Monday at the Hatfield Hall ticket desk or by calling (812) 877-8544.

This year’s series will feature the following shows:

Sept. 11 – Tiempo Libre, 8 p.m.

One of today’s hottest young Latin bands, this three-time Grammy-nominated group brings the rich traditions of Cuban music to the modern sounds of today. Celebrated for their dance-inducing performances, the first authentic all-Cuban timba band in the United States blends high voltage Latin jazz with the seductive rhythms of son. Classically trained at La ENA, Cuba’s premiere conservatory, the Miami-based band members have inherited the rich traditions of the music of their native Cuba. The group’s latest CD, Bach in Havana, honors the baroque master’s influences on their conservatory days, fusing Bach melodies with Afro Cuban rhythms. General admission tickets: $22; Student/youth tickets: $16.

Sept. 24 – Hiromi, 7:30 p.m.

This stunning keyboard virtuoso took the jazz world by storm with her 2003 debut album, Another Mind. Mentored by keyboard giants like Ahmad Jamal and Chick Corea, she has a unique musical world view and dynamic piano style. Her influences are endless and offer a smorgasbord of backgrounds, ranging from such classical artists as Bach, Oscar Peterson and Franz Liszt to the modern Sly and the Family Stone, Dream Theatre and King Crimson. While she has wowed audiences in past years with her trio and quartet performances, this will be an intimate night of solo piano pyrotechnics. General admission tickets: $18; Student/youth tickets: $14.

Oct. 10 – ‘S Wonderful, 3 p.m.

The new theatrical production is an all-singing, all-dancing musical revue that celebrates the genius of George and Ira Gershwin, the most successful songwriting team in the history of popular music. It incorporates five mini-musicals that take the audience on a ride to the different places, times and musical styles. Like a Technicolor movie musical, ‘S Wonderful paints a picture of nostalgia and entertainment while paying tribute to the Gershwins’ incomparable songbook. General admission tickets: $28; Student/youth tickets: $18.

Oct. 22 – Jim Brickman, 8 p.m.

Jim Brickman has revolutionized the sound of solo piano with his pop-style instrumentals and star studded vocal collaborations making him the best-selling solo piano artist of our time. This year finds the two-time Grammy-nominated, platinum-selling entertainer creating a musical celebration for audiences seeking an escape from the hectic demands of everyday life. Brickman will take fans on a musical journey playing hits like “Valentine,” “Love of My Life,” “If You Believe,” “Never Alone” and more. General admission tickets: $45.

Nov. 13 – Kathy Mattea, 8 p.m.

The two-time Grammy winner and Country Music Association Female Vocalist of the Year has followed a path of discovery and re-thinking throughout a career spanning 11 albums. The singer of such classics as “18 Wheels and A Dozen Roses,” “Where‘ve You Been,” “Goin’ Gone” and “Come from the Heart” is now ready to embark on an exciting new phase of her musical journey. Her 2008 album, “Coal,” combined her social activism with introspective lyrics about coal mining. General admission tickets: $32.

Nov. 21 – Mark Nizer 3-D, 3 p.m.

International juggling champion Mark Nizer is the first performer to incorporate 3-D technology into a live show. Lasers jump out over the audience, so close you think you can touch them. Two robots perform on stage: One live, one on video, both in 3-D. Neon balls play live music while creating a unique 3-D world that changes with each note. This show combines original comedy, world-class juggling, movement, music and a focus on technology. The audience will never know what is possible until you see for yourself. This show is part of the Family Discovery Series. General admission tickets: $15; Student/youth tickets: $7.50.

Dec. 8 – Leahy Family Christmas, 7:30 p.m.

This extraordinary step-dancing, fiddle-playing, song-singing Canadian family of eight musical brothers and sisters will perform a full spectrum of Christmas music from sacred hymns to fiery Celtic tunes and best-loved carols. Leahy is known for a broad repertoire that is a unique blend of musical styles and genres, and has garnered countless awards and accolades in a wide range of categories from traditional roots, folk and country to pop, jazz and classical. General admission tickets: $28; Student/youth tickets: $14.

Jan. 10 – Russian National Ballet, 7:30 p.m.

The world-class ballet company offers a double delight, presenting the timeless one-act Chopiniana (also known as Les Sylphides), danced to the romantic music of Chopin, and Romeo and Juliet, a full-length Shakespearean tragedy featuring Tchaikovsky’s music. The troupe features over 50 dancers of vast experience under the direction of Elena Radchenko, the legendary former principal dancer of the famed Bolshoi Ballet. General admission tickets: $28; Student/youth tickets: $18.

Jan. 14 – The House Jacks, 7:30 p.m.

A rock band without instruments, this group’s “no-holds-barred” a cappella style obliterates traditional preconceptions about the limits of the human voice. Taking their name from the Heavy Equipment section of the Yellow Pages (a “house jack” is used to move a house), the Jacks originally got to know each other on the collegiate a cappella circuit of the late 1980s. The group has now completed several successful world tours, gained thousands of devoted fans and recorded popular live albums. General admission tickets: $18; Student/youth tickets: $14.

Jan. 21 – Punch Brothers, 7:30 p.m.

Five young, hot and fiercely talented pickers led by mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile produce a fresh, cutting-edge sound that seamlessly blends bluegrass traditions with breathtaking innovation that has entertained sold-out crowds throughout the world. The band’s name is taken from the Mark Twain short story, “Punch, Brothers, Punch!” General admission tickets: $22; Student/youth tickets: $16.

Jan. 29 – Popovich Pet Theater, 3 p.m.

It’s raining cats and dogs — and clowns and jugglers. Gregory Popovich, heir to the storied Moscow Circus legacy, provides an extravaganza of European-style clowns, amazing juggling and balancing acts, and the extraordinary talent of his performing pets to delight adults and kids.  Each of the show’s 15 cats and 10 dogs were once strays, rescued from animal shelters. Now, they love to show off on stage by performing a variety of stunts and skits. This show is part of the Family Discovery Series. General admission tickets: $22; Student/youth tickets: $11.

Feb. 2 – Dr. Kaboom, 7 p.m.

Doktor Kaboom was such a big hit with children and parents last season that he was asked to return with a new show offering a hilarious scientific journey of increasingly spectacular, and often successful, experiments and demonstrations. He uses masterful improvisational skills to take the audience on a sidesplitting tour of the modern scientific method while demonstrating spectacular applications of the physical sciences. This is part of the Family Discovery Series. General admission tickets: $10; Student/youth tickets: $5.

Feb. 10 – Ruthie Foster, 7:30 p.m.

This Texas singer, guitarist, songwriter and rising star has been compared to Aretha Franklin and Ella Fitzgerald (among other great singers), but Foster’s vocal sound is her own — a rich and rootsy blend of blues, folk and gospel music with some old soul, acoustic jazz and R&B thrown in for seasoning. She has performed on pubic television’s Austin City Limits, toured England and Europe, and performed at major music festivals, winning devoted fans and glowing reviews at every step. Her most recent album, The Truth According to Ruthie Foster, earned a Grammy Award nomination. General admission tickets: $18; Student/youth tickets: $14.

Feb. 18 – The Umbilical Brothers, 7:30 p.m.

This Australian comedy duo combines a wild imagination and vocal ingenuity to create a surreal world full of choreographed mayhem and audio-acrobatics in the show “THWACK.” With minimal dialogue and a focus on physical comedy, the show includes everything from a tag-team fight with an imaginary fly (complete with sound effects) to the duo’s amazing stretchy arms that can pick up objects six feet away. The show is recommended for persons 14 years old and older. General admission tickets: $22; Student/youth tickets: $16.

March 11 – DePue De Hoyos, 7:30 p.m.

A chance meeting south of the border melded the talents of Alex DePue and Miguel DeHoyos, two stellar musicians known for their fiery performances. Individually, the entertainers have wowed the world and performed at Carnegie Hall. Together, the duo produces a jaw-dropping tour de force of latin, pop hits and show tunes that can speak to anyone’s soul and bring the audience to its feet. General admission tickets: $18; Student/youth tickets: $14.

March 18 – Metropolis, featuring organist Clark Wilson, 7:30 p.m.

Lavish and spectacular, with elaborate sets and modern science-fiction style, Metropolis is a crowning achievement of the German silent cinema. Its images have inspired such sci-fi landmarks as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Blade Runner and The Matrix. Now, restored with state-of-the-art digital technology and with live accompaniment by theater organist extraordinaire Clark Wilson, Metropolis can be appreciated in its full glory as it was 1927. General admission tickets: $10; Student/youth tickets: $5.

March 20 – Star Trek Live!, 3 p.m.

Boldly go where no one has gone before. This out-of-this-world, interactive adventure from The Mad Science Group offers a thrilling journey that combines cutting-edge special effects, unmatched audience interaction and space age science to create an exhilarating and unforgettable theatrical experience.  Audience members will join Captain James T. Kirk and Vulcan First Officer Spock on an exploration with the legendary U.S.S. Enterprise. The journey will require knowledge, ingenuity, logic and an exploration of science to discover what is happening and how to set things right and save the Federation and human civilization. This show is part of the Family Discovery Series. General admission tickets: $15; Student/youth tickets: $7.50.

March 25 – The 39 Steps, 7:30 p.m.

Mix a Hitchcock masterpiece with a juicy spy novel, add a dash of Monty Python, and you this fast-paced whodunit for anyone who loves the magic of theater. This two-time Tony and Drama Desk award-winning treat is packed with nonstop laughs, over 150 zany characters (played by a ridiculously talented cast of four), an on-stage plane crash, handcuffs, missing fingers and some good old-fashioned romance. This theatrical experience climaxes an unforgettable evening of pure pleasure with a death-defying finale. General admission tickets: $32; Student/youth tickets: $20

April 2 – Time For Three, 7:30 p.m.

A self-described jam band draws heavily on classical and folk influences to re-create well-known orchestra standards with seemingly flawless arrangements. The trio, featuring two violinists and a double-bassist from Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music, sports a repertoire that includes a diverse list of classics, a few pop songs and original compositions. General admission tickets: $22; Student/youth tickets: $16.

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