Tuesday, June 3, 2008

UIS announces 08-09 Performing Arts Season at Sangamon Auditorium

The University of Illinois at Springfield announced the 2008-2009 Performing Arts Season at Sangamon Auditorium on Thursday, June 5.

Based on a similar make-up of last year's performing arts season, Sangamon Auditorium will continue to present a Visiting Artists series (formerly known as the Performing Arts Series), a Broadway series, and a variety of Family Events at UIS.

This year's Visiting Artists at UIS series showcases the very best of traditional performing arts. Patrons can experience classical ballet, world and modern dance, world music, rock 'n roll icons, the best in political humor, and more.

The Broadway at UIS series brings some of the best in Broadway, direct from New York. This year's series features all-time favorites and several shows that continue to be the hottest tickets on Broadway.

Family Events at UIS help support Sangamon Auditorium's goal of providing family programming to give young people the opportunity to experience live professional performing arts programs and to provide quality arts entertainment that can be enjoyed by family and friends together.

Series subscriptions go on sale to new and renewing subscribers Friday, June 6, at 10 a.m. For more information about the University of Illinois at Springfield's 2008-2009 Performing Arts Season at Sangamon Auditorium, or to place subscription orders, visit www.SangamonAuditorium.org or call the Sangamon Auditorium Ticket Office at 217/206-6160 or 800/207-6960, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Single tickets and Create Your Own series packages go on sale to the general public on August 22 at 10 a.m., after series subscriptions have been placed. Individual Broadway events go on sale approximately six weeks prior to each engagement.

Visiting Artists at UIS

Neil Berg's 100 Years of Broadway
Saturday, October 4, 2008, 8 p.m.

Neil Berg's 100 Years of Broadway re-creates the biggest moments from the most spectacular shows of the century - featuring the actual stars that helped make them famous.

Select Broadway names light up the stage with Neil Berg's brilliantly revived arrangements of classic songs from hit shows like The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables, Aida, Little Shop of Horrors, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Jekyll & Hyde. A Broadway review you won't want to miss!

Sponsors: Friends of Sangamon Auditorium and Newscenter 17

Compañía Flamenco José Porcel
José Porcel, Artistic Director
Thursday, October 16, 2008, 7:30 p.m.

Direct from Spain, José Porcel and his company of dancers represent the best in classic, traditional flamenco while flawlessly melding contemporary styles and moves. Prepare for an evening of fiery footwork; brilliant costumes; evocative, sensual choreography; and brilliant musicianship from an onstage ensemble of guitarists and vocalists.

This presentation is supported by the Performing Arts Fund, a program of Arts Midwest funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes a great nation deserves great art, with additional contributions from General Mills Foundation, Land O' Lakes Foundation, and the Illinois Arts Council.

An Evening with David Crosby and Graham Nash
Sunday, October 26, 2008, 7 p.m.

Grammy-winning, Rock and Roll Hall of Famers David Crosby and Graham Nash have embarked on a tour as "two together" and are coming to Sangamon Auditorium. This special performance offers a rare opportunity to savor an intimate, harmony-heavy experience with two of rock's most legendary singer-songwriters.

Capitol Steps
Friday, October 31, 2008, 8 p.m

On the eve of the national election!

Twenty-five years ago, the Capitol Steps began as a group of Senate staffers who set out to satirize the very people and places that employed them. Most current cast members have worked on Capitol Hill: some for Democrats, some for Republicans, and others for politicians who firmly straddle the fence. The performers dig into current headlines to create their own song parodies and skits mixed with their special brand of satirical humor.

Sponsor: Springfield Scene Magazine

Presented in collaboration with the College of Public Affairs and Administration and the Center for State Policy and Leadership

Direct from West Africa: The Song and Dance Ensemble of West Africa
Friday, November 7, 2008, 8 p.m.

The countries of West Africa have united behind their rich musical traditions to form this incredible and unique ensemble. Comprised of singers, dancers, and musicians from the various cultures of West Africa, this company combines the traditional rhythms, instruments, folklore, and mythology of nations such as Togo, Senegal, Guinea, Ghana, Benin, The Ivory Coast, and Mauritania to paint a colorful and exciting picture of the oral and musical histories of these diverse people.

Presented in cooperation with UIS Multicultural Student Affairs

Cherryholmes Christmas
Saturday, November 22, 2008, 8 p.m.

Until April of 1999, this dynamic family band did not exist, and half of its youthful members hadn't even picked up an instrument. In five short years, this high-energy, Nashville-based group was named 2005 IBMA's Entertainers of the Year. Since then, Cherryholmes has been nominated for a Grammy for their self-titled album in 2006 and their latest album -- Cherryholmes II Black and White -- debuted at #1 on Billboard's Top Bluegrass chart.

Presented in cooperation with Midwest Bluegrass Festivals and 91.9 WUIS Public Radio

Ira Glass: Radio Stories and Other Stories
Saturday, December 13, 2008, 8 p.m.

Ira Glass is the affable host and producer of the quirky hit show This American Life, now heard by millions of public radio listeners each week and recently adapted for television by Showtime. He travels the country meeting everyday people from all walks of life, telling "unexpected stories that happen to be true." Glass will share some of his favorite yarns and answer questions from the audience when he visits Sangamon Auditorium for the first time.

Sponsor: Ace Hardware of Springfield and 91.9 - WUIS Public Radio

A Columbia Artists Production - Direct from Moscow
Russian National Ballet Company - Giselle
Thursday, January 22, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

The Russian National Ballet Company was founded in Moscow during the transitional period of Perestroika in the late 1980s and incorporated graduates from the great Russian choreographic schools of Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Perm. Today, the Russian National Ballet Theatre is its own institution, with a full compliment of dancers of singular instruction and vast experience, many of whom have been with the company since its inception.

Presented in cooperation with the Springfield Ballet Company

This presentation is supported by the Performing Arts Fund, a program of Arts Midwest funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes a great nation deserves great art, with additional contributions from General Mills Foundation, Land O' Lakes Foundation, and the Illinois Arts Council.

Jay Ungar and Molly Mason: An Early Birthday Party for A. Lincoln
featuring the 10th Illinois Volunteer Cavalry Band and the Springfield International Folk Dancers
Saturday, January 31, 2009, 8 p.m.

Since joining forces in the late 1970s, Jay Ungar and Molly Mason have become one of the most celebrated duos on the American acoustic music scene. Their performance of Jay's haunting composition Ashokan Farewell in Ken Burns' The Civil War earned the couple international acclaim, including an Emmy nomination for the song and a Grammy award for the soundtrack. Teamed with the 10th Illinois Volunteer Cavalry Band and the Springfield International Folk Dancers, the University of Illinois at Springfield and Sangamon Auditorium say, Happy Early Birthday A. Lincoln!

Presented in collaboration with UIS Music

National Acrobats of China
Sunday, February 8, 2009, 3 p.m

Direct from China, this dazzling company of 35 performers mesmerizes and mystifies with its stunning displays of the best in Chinese martial arts, illusion, and acrobats, all set to traditional music. Founded over 50 years ago, this troupe has been one of the most influential acrobatic ensembles in the world, having won every important award in international competitions. From plate-spinning to cycling stunts to bench-juggling with their feet, The National Acrobats of China never cease to amaze audiences around the globe.

Ensemble Galilei with Neal Conan: First Person: Stories from the Edge of the World
Saturday, February 21, 2009, 8 p.m.

First Person: Stories from the Edge of the World is a remarkable collaboration between the National Geographic Society, NPR’s Neal Conan, and Ensemble Galilei. Spectacular photographs and images projected on a large on-stage screen, Neal Conan's compelling narration, and evocative music created specifically for this project, work seamlessly to take the audience along on some of the world's most extraordinary expeditions.

Presented in cooperation with 91.9 WUIS Public Radio

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis
Saturday, February 28, 2009, 8 p.m.

Hailed as "an extraordinarily versatile orchestra" by The Los Angeles Times, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra is composed of jazz music's leading soloists under the leadership of musical director Wynton Marsalis. Drawing from an extensive repertoire that includes original compositions by Mr. Marsalis, Ted Nash, Ron Westray, and other members of the orchestra, as well as the masterworks of Ellington, Mingus, Coltrane, and other great jazz composers, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra's concerts are internationally critically acclaimed.

Sponsor: United Community Bank

Susan Werner Duo
Friday, March 6, 2009, 8 p.m. UIS Studio Theatre

With six albums under her belt, an active touring career throughout the U.S., and a string of accolades from the likes of The Washington Post, The Village Voice, and The New Yorker, Susan Werner has become one of the defining artists of the folk music genre. Her songs effortlessly slide between folk, jazz, and pop, and are delivered with a sassy wit and classic mid-western charm.

Her new album The Gospel Truth explores the role of the Church in contemporary American life. Quite possibly the first "agnostic gospel" album, her new songs speak in a wide variety of voices, from faithful and traditional to the critical and even the unconvinced.

Reduced Shakespeare - History of United States Abridged
Friday, March 13, 2009, 8 p.m.

600 Years of History in 6000 seconds! From Washington to Watergate, yea verily from the Bering Straits to Baghdad, from New World to New World Order, the three cultural guerillas of the Reduced Shakespeare Company will take you on a 90-minute rollercoaster ride through the glorious quagmire that is American history.

The RSC tackles such controversial questions as: Who really discovered America? Why did Abe Lincoln free the slaves? How many Democrats does it take to screw in a light bulb? History is normally written by the winners... now it's the RSC's turn.

Presented in collaboration with the College of Public Affairs and Administration and the Center for State Policy and Leadership

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
Jim Vincent, Artistic Director
Thursday April 16, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

Under the dynamic leadership of Artistic Director Jim Vincent, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago is among the most original forces in contemporary dance. Critically acclaimed for its exuberant, athletic, and innovative repertoire, HSDC's dancers display unparalleled versatility and virtuosity in performances that inspire, challenge, and engage audiences worldwide.

Sponsor: Omni Communications Group, Inc.

Funded in part by the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. Additional funding provided by The Ford Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, JP Morgan Chase Foundation, and MetLife Foundation.

Broadway at UIS

The Pajama Game
Monday, November 10, 2008, 7:30 p.m.

The must-see musical of the season!

Bright and riotously funny, this fast-paced, frisky tale is theatre at its very best with this sparkling, all-new production of the Tony Award-winning, Broadway smash hit – The Pajama Game. The feisty employee representative has found her match in the pajama shop superintendent and when the two get together, they wind up discussing a whole lot more than job actions! The high-energy score by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross brims with popular hits and musical theatre standards such as "Hey There," "Steam Heat," and the hilarious "Hernando's Hideaway" that will keep you humming all the way home. For solid musical comedy, it's hard to beat The Pajama Game.

RAIN: The Beatles Experience
Tuesday, February 3, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

Experience what Beatlemania was all about, from Ed Sullivan to Abbey Road! They look like them and they sound just like them! "The next best thing to seeing the Beatles," raves the Denver Post. All the music and vocals are performed totally live! RAIN covers the Fab Four from the earliest beginnings through the psychedelic late '60s and their long-haired hippie, hard-rocking rooftop days. RAIN is a multi-media, multi-dimensional experience...a fusion of historical footage and hilarious television commercials from the 1960s lights up video screens and live cameras zoom in for close-ups. "Uncanny! RAIN are a quartet of fine musicians in their own right…as the Beatles, they triumph!" cheers the Boston Herald. "An adoring Valentine to the Beatles," declares the Washington Post. Sing along with your family and friends to such Beatlemaniac favorites as "Let It Be," "Hey Jude," "My Guitar Gently Weeps," "Come Together," and "Can't Buy Me Love."

25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Monday, February 16, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

In the Tony Award-winning new musical comedy 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, six young people in the throes of puberty, overseen by grown-ups who barely managed to escape childhood themselves, learn that winning isn't everything and that losing doesn't necessarily make you a loser. Spelling Bee has been hailed by the Wall Street Journal as "perfect in every possible way – that rarity of rarities, a super-smart musical that is also a bona fide crowd pleaser." This tuneful, offbeat, and at times heartwarming show offers audience members the opportunity (strictly voluntary) to become part of the action as on-stage spellers. The New York Times calls Spelling Bee "irresistible, riotously funny, and remarkably ingenious – gold stars all around."

Monday, March 16, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

It's 1962, and pleasantly plump Baltimore teen Tracy Turnblad has only one desire - to dance on the popular Corny Collins Show. When her dream comes true, Tracy is transformed from social outcast to sudden star, but she must use her newfound power to vanquish the reigning Teen Queen, win the affections of heartthrob Link Larkin, and integrate a TV network - all without denting her 'do! Don't miss Hairspray, Broadway's musical-comedy phenomenon that inspired a major motion picture and won eight 2003 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. As The New York Times says, "If life were everything it should be, it would be more like Hairspray. It's irresistible!"

Annie the Musical
Monday, April 13, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

Leapin' lizards! Annie is coming to Sangamon Auditorium, UIS! The timeless tale of Little Orphan Annie is back, giving a whole new generation the chance to experience this classic musical about never giving up hope. Boasting one of Broadway's most memorable scores, including "It's the Hard-Knock Life," "Easy Street," "N.Y.C.," and the ever-optimistic "Tomorrow," Annie is a delightful theatrical experience for the entire family. Don't miss this all-new production that Variety calls "a winner!"

Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy
Wednesday, April 22, 2009, 7:30 p.m.

Direct from Broadway, Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy is an exotic encounter inspired by nature's unpredictable creations that are brought to life by an international cast of 25 soaring aerialists, spine-bending contortionists, acrobats, jugglers, and musicians. The astounding feats performed in this action packed Cirque Dream are enhanced with over 150 spectacular costumes and set in a fantastical jungle ignited by striking visual effects. From the breathtaking aerial ballet of butterflies to the balancing giraffes, gigantic flowers and trees, this world-class explosion of athleticism, theatre, and imagination will exhilarate the entire family. In the ongoing tradition of extravagant touring shows, Neil Goldberg and Cirque Productions continue to blend European artistry with circus and Broadway theatrics in a dramatic fashion that transcends imagination and leaves its narration to the eyes of the beholder, making Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy a Broadway first.

Family Events at UIS

Sponsors: WICS News Channel 20, 104.5 WFMB, 99.7 KISS-FM

The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley
Friday, October 10, 2008, 7 p.m.

Stanley Lambchop is your normal, every day, run-of-the-mill kid. He's nothing out of the ordinary. But one night while he's sleeping, the bulletin board on the wall above his bed comes loose and falls – right on top of Stanley! And the next morning, Stanley Lambchop wakes up flat! Not just flat…really flat. At first it's not so bad. He can slide under locked doors. His friends fly him like a kite. And Stanley's the best in his class at Hide-n-Seek. But someone has to do something, and that someone is Stanley! If he has to be flat, at least he is going to make the best of it. Stanley is going to put himself in a big envelope and travel the world – as a human letter! And the adventure begins!

"Goodnight Moon" and "The Runaway Bunny"
Friday, January 30, 2009, 7 p.m.

Goodnight Moon is a celebration of familiar nighttime rituals, while The Runaway Bunny's pretend tale of leaving home evokes reassuring responses from his loving mum. Both tales feature endearing rabbit characters, and the soothing rhythms of bunny banter and dream-like imagery never fail to infuse young readers with a reassuring sense of security. Mermaid Theatre's staged adaptation will bring a new sense of appreciation to stories that have delighted several generations.

Series Subscriptions – Visiting Artists, Broadway, and the Family Series at UIS

In an effort to create greater flexibility for Auditorium patrons, Sangamon Auditorium will again feature a variety of series/subscription opportunities. Renewal and new subscription sales begin Friday, June 6, at 10 a.m. Current Visiting Artist, Broadway, and Family series subscribers will have the opportunity to renew their subscriptions until Friday, June 27.

By subscribing, patrons are guaranteed a variety of benefits that only subscribers get to enjoy.

  • Receive up to a 20% savings on series tickets.
  • Never hear the words "sold out!"
  • Get the best seats at the best prices before the general public.
  • Enjoy the same great seat at every show with the series subscription you select.
  • Benefit from Lost Ticket insurance, available only to subscribers.
  • Secure the right to renew the same great seat, or upgrade, year after year.
  • Never wait in line to see your favorite show again!
Create Your Own Series (CYO)

This year, Sangamon Auditorium will feature a "Create Your Own Series" package that gives patrons the freedom to pick all the shows that they want to see from the Visiting Artists Series, Broadway Series, and Family Events at UIS and still receive many choice benefits.

  • Create your own personal series, selecting the shows you want to see the most.
  • Receive up to a 15% discount on the Visiting Artist and Family shows you select.
  • Enjoy access to Broadway at UIS tickets before they go on sale to the general public.

To create a series, patrons simply choose at least five events from the Visiting Artists Series, Broadway Series, and Family Events at UIS.

Create Your Own Series packages can be ordered beginning Friday, August 22, at 10 a.m. Create Your Own Series packages are not guaranteed the same seat location for the events selected, but will receive the best seats available after all other series subscriptions have been filled. Patrons are welcome to purchase varying numbers of tickets to each event in their Create Your Own Series package.

Sangamon Auditorium, UIS

Located on the campus of the University of Illinois at Springfield, the auditorium hosts more than 120 performances annually. Home to the Illinois Symphony Orchestra and Springfield Ballet Company, it is the only auditorium of its kind and size in the Springfield area with a seating capacity of 2,018.

With a staff of 11 full-time employees, graduate assistants, more than 400 volunteers, ushers, and local stagehands, Sangamon Auditorium continues to fulfill its mission of presenting and supporting varied cultural and educational professional arts activities to the audiences in Springfield, Sangamon County, and the surrounding areas. The Auditorium administrative offices can be reached at 217/206-6150 or by e-mail at onstage@uis.edu.