With everything from the best of Broadway and New Orleans jazz to puppetry arts and Ramona Quimby, the 2006-2007 Frostburg State University Cultural Events Series boasts a lively lineup of entertainment for all ages this year. FSU’s two performance series, the CES Jazz Club sponsored by Kauffman Music and the Main Stage series, provide an opportunity to enjoy art, music and theater from throughout the world in the scenic setting of Western Maryland. With affordable admission prices and local, easy-access venues, FSU’s Cultural Events Series makes it easy for performing arts fans to see top-quality shows without having to go the distance. Tickets go on sale Aug. 21.
The Main Stage Series gets the season off to an explosive start with Neil Berg’s “100 Years of Broadway” at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 21, in FSU’s Performing Arts Center Pealer Recital Hall. This spectacular medley recreates some of the biggest moments from the best known Broadway musical shows of the century, including “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Les Miserables” and “Jekyll and Hyde.” Supported by an all-star New York band, the show features revivals of Broadway classics as well as numbers from Broadway’s newest hit shows being performed by the stars straight from Broadway.
In late September, don’t miss FSU’s first Appalachian Festival celebrating the artistic and musical traditions of Western Maryland’s region! Activities include performances and workshops of old-time music, bluegrass, gospel, shape-note singing and more. Exhibitions and demonstrations of traditional arts such as rug-making, quilting, basketry, spinning, chair-caning, soap-making and folk medicinal practices run throughout the day Saturday, Sept. 23, in the Upper Quad area on campus. Local vendors will also offer regional foods ranging from buckwheat pancakes and maple syrup to sausage and sauerkraut. A special pancake breakfast prepared by the Frostburg Rotary Club will be held 7 a.m.-noon in the St. Michael Church Cafeteria.
The festival is capped off with an evening celebration performance featuring Liz Carroll, John Doyle, Dirk Powell and Bruce Molsky at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Performing Arts Center. Chicago-born Carroll won the Senior All-Ireland Fiddle Championship at age 18 and has been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship. Dublin-born Doyle is an accomplished musician whose work is heard on radio, television and film, as well as in concert. This daring and inventive duo will share the stage – and their musical roots – with two talented Appalachian musicians, Bruce Molsky, a fiddler, guitarist, banjoist and singer; and critically acclaimed banjoist and fiddler Dirk Powell.
What is a CES season without a captivating performance by the Maryland Symphony Orchestra? The ensemble returns to Frostburg at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 13, at the Performing Arts Center Pealer Recital Hall. Under the exuberant baton of music director and conductor Elizabeth Schulze, the Maryland Symphony Orchestra presents major works by Sibelius, Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky and includes a performance with award-winning violinist Nicolas Kendall. This special concert is co-presented with the Allegany Arts Council.
Then, things reach a dramatic note when the internationally renowned Aquila Theatre Company comes to Frostburg at 7:30 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 5, at the Performing Arts Center Drama Theatre with a stylish new production of Shakespeare’s most famous love story, “Romeo & Juliet.” Aquila is known for its bold, intelligent and sparkling productions of Shakespeare and has received invitations to Shakespeare festivals around the world.
The CES Jazz Club sponsored by Kauffman Music presents the noted jazz singer Rachael Price at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, at Windsor Hall at Town Centre, Cumberland. At only 20 years old, Price has already proved that she is something very special. At 17, she was a semi-finalist at the Montreaux International Jazz Vocal Competition in France and has received standing ovations for her performances at the famed Newport Jazz Festival, at the Society of Singers’ gala to honor Elton John and at the Shubert organization’s gala to honor Robert Goulet. She is often featured as guest performer with the T.S. Monk Sextet and the DIVA Jazz Orchestra, and her vocal repertoire ranges from great American jazz standards to recent compositions.
Experience the joys of the holiday season when Three Irish Tenors return to Frostburg State University to perform “Christmas from Dublin,” with two performance times at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 19, in the Performing Arts Center Drama Theatre. The world-renowned Ciaran Nagle, Anthony Norton and Brian Dunphy present a glorious program of Christmas music from Ireland and around the world, joined by an ensemble of musicians and featuring special guests Danna Davis, Ellen McElroy and Jacqueline Whelan, a.k.a. The Irish Divas!
The holiday spirit continues with “Celebrating the Holidays,” an unforgettable evening of holiday music by the world-famous, 40-member Moscow Symphony Orchestra at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 14, at the Allegany High School Auditorium in Cumberland. This classical Christmas program showcases Tchaikovsky’s inspired and enchanting ballet music from “The Nutcracker,” Handel’s soul-stirring “Messiah,” plus a special Christmas carol sing-along portion featuring the vocal talents of an Allegany County High School All Star Choir.
Then, hold onto your hats in late January when the foot-stomping, Tony Award-nominated “Urban Cowboy – The Musical” rides into town for three performances on Friday, Jan. 26, and Saturday, Jan. 27, in the Performing Arts Center Drama Theatre. Presented by Windwood Productions and based on the 1980 hit movie starring John Travolta and Debra Winger, this romp of a musical is a love story and a tale of triumph over adversity played out in a sprawling Texas dance bar featuring line-dancing, mechanical bull-riding and some of the best country bands in the world.
Get to know the world’s most animated elementary school student during a special children’s theatre performance of “Ramona Quimby,” presented by TheatreworksUSA at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24, at the Performing Arts Center Drama Theatre. Ramona, the exasperating but lovable third-grader who has delighted young readers for the last 40 years through the books of Newbery Award-winning writer Beverly Cleary, now comes to life on the stage in this spirited production. While intended to tickle the funny bone, the play also incorporates issues that touch on the lives of real families.
Capitol Quartet takes the stage at 3 p.m. on Sunday, March 4, at the Performing Arts Center Pealer Recital Hall. Widely considered one of the most exciting ensembles performing today and comprised of saxophonists who are alumni of the premier military bands in the United States, the Capitol Quartet combines innovative programming and virtuosic playing with an engaging stage presence. The repertoire will features special arrangements of timeless masterpieces by such composers as Bach, Beethoven and Mozart, as well as classical and jazz standards, contemporary works for saxophone and new works commissioned for the Quartet.
Take a trip to the Big Easy when the Preservation Hall Jazz Band performs at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 15, at the Lane University Center Alice R. Manicur Assembly Hall. Presented as part of the CES Jazz Club sponsored by Kauffman Music, the critically acclaimed Preservation Hall Jazz Band is dedicated to preserving New Orleans Jazz and celebrating the city’s vitality as a distinctive center of culture. These master musicians play gospel, old spirituals, military marches and more, performing in a way that makes people get up and dance in the aisles.
Audiences of all ages are invited to enjoy the playful creativity of the Cashore Marionettes with two performances Sunday, April 15, at the Performing Arts Center Drama Theatre. At 3 p.m., award-winning artist Joseph Cashore manipulates his amazingly lifelike marionettes in a family program, “Simple Gifts,” which is recommended for adults and children no younger than eight. A series of touching character portrayals and scenes from everyday life are set to original and classical music. In his tour-de-force, “Life in Motion,” performed at 7:30 p.m., Cashore presents a collection of marionette masterworks. These programs are recommended for adult and young adult audiences.
The CES Jazz Club sponsored by Kauffman Music presents Mike Tomaro at 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 28, Windsor Hall at Town Centre, Cumberland. Tomaro is director of jazz studies at Duquesne University and a multi-talented performer, composer and arranger. A saxophonist, flutist and clarinetist, he has worked with such diverse artists as Nancy Wilson, Rosemary Clooney, Ernie Watts and Claudio Roditi. In his hometown, he has performed with the Pittsburgh Symphony, Pittsburgh Ballet and Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble. He is in great demand both nationally and internationally as a guest soloist, adjudicator and clinician. Tomaro is presented in partnership with the Cumberland Jazz Society’s Weekend of Jazz.
The CES season wraps up with an around-the-world musical tour with Los Folkloristas at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, April 30, in the Performing Arts Center Pealer Recital Hall. Founded in 1966 to preserve and record the traditional music of Mexico and Latin America, the group performs music from over a dozen countries and together plays more than 100 different instruments.
Discounts are available for both the Main Stage and Jazz Club series as well as a Build Your Own series. Purchasing series subscriptions guarantees the best seats in the house at a discount off individual event tickets. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the FSU Cultural Events Box Office at 301-687-3137 or toll free at 1-866-TIXX-CES, or visit online at ces.frostburg.edu.
The Cultural Events Series at Frostburg State University is supported in part by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency funded by the State of Maryland and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art; and in part by the Allegany Arts Council with funds from the Maryland State Arts Council.
FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services, and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. You may request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office at 301-687-4102, TDD 301-687-7955.