Where can you see live, award-winning bluegrass, comedy and chamber music, spend an evening with Wynton Marsalis or catch Chicago Hope’s Hector Elizondo in a performance of The Prisoner of Second Avenue? Beginning in September, this year’s Silver Series lineup at Plymouth State University’s Silver Center for the Arts will offer these great events and more.
In announcing this year’s series, Silver Center Director Diane Jeffrey also talked about the new name and graphic identity for the Center. She says, “We felt a need to simplify our name; generally people just call us the Silver Center so we’re just dropping ‘Cultural Arts.’ Our updated logo reflects that and gives us a more identifiable look.”
The Silver Series opens September 17 at 8 p.m. with The Del McCoury Band, an award-winning bluegrass band led by 65-year-old Del, who has been called a bluegrass ambassador. The band has won the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year award eight times, and McCoury, who has performed with such musical greats as Steve Earl and Phish, is not afraid to mix his traditional bluegrass roots with the sounds of other new musical styles.
Del is joined by his sons, Ron on mandolin and Rob on banjo, both famed instrumentalists in their own right. Bassist Mike Bub and fiddler Jason Carter round out the band. In live shows, the band chooses a traditional two-microphone setup rather than turning to more modern audio equipment, providing a rich sound that complements the band’s combination of traditional bluegrass and modern influences.
Tickets for Del McCoury are $30-$25 for adults, $28-$23 for seniors and $25-$20 for youth. The concert is sponsored by New Hampshire Public Radio and the Pemigewasset National Bank.
October 6 at 8 p.m., get ready for the Walden Chamber Players, a group of musicians who boast an impressive musical background. The players are current and past members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Pops, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the Vienna State Opera, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. At PSU, the ensemble will present works by Bach, Mozart, Schubert and Shostakovich.
Tickets for the performance are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $12 for youth. The concert will be preceded by a 3:30 p.m. multi-media lecture called Music and the Social Conscience. Free tickets for the lecture can be reserved by calling the Box Office.
Jazz pianist Arturo O’Farrill and his trio return to Plymouth State October 13 at 8 p.m. O’Farrill. He is the musical director of the Afro-Latin Orchestra and is director of The Chico O’Farrill Afro-Cuban Jazz Big Band, an ensemble that honors his father’s musical legacy. O’Farrill’s albums include Bloodlines, A Night in Tunisia and Pure Emotion. This year, he releases Arturo O’Farrill Live in Brooklyn, The Jim Seeley/Arturo Farrill Quintet and Una Noche Inolvidable (“an unforgettable night”).
Tickets for the Arturo O’Farrill Trio are $15 for adults, $13 for seniors and $8 for youth.
Don’t miss An Evening with Wynton Marsalis October 27 at 8 p.m. With more than 7 million records sold worldwide, Grammy award-winning jazz trumpeter, bandleader and composer Marsalis is the most recognized name in jazz today. He is the first musician ever to win the Pulitzer Prize for music, for his 1997 release Blood on the Fields, inspired by the experiences of slaves in the south. Marsalis is also a famed classical musician who has released 11 classical albums and performed with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and the English Chamber Orchestra.
Marsalis is not only an accomplished musician, but an educator and leader. His award-winning television series, Marsalis on Music, introduced children to the joys of music-making and appreciation. He currently serves as artistic director for the Jazz at Lincoln Center program, which he co-founded in 1987, where he focuses his efforts on performing for young people and introducing them to new music and old standards.
At PSU, Marsalis will perform with pianist Dan Nimmer, bassist Carlos Henriquez, drummer Ali Jackson, vocalist Jennifer Sanon and saxophonist Walter Blanding.
Tickets for An Evening with Wynton Marsalis are $40-$35 for adults, $38-$33 for seniors and $35-$30 for youth. The concert is sponsored by The Common Man Inn/Foster’s Steakhouse and MegaPrint, Inc.
More great jazz will come your way November 10 at 8 p.m., when the Walter Blanding Jr. Quartet performs. His first recording, Tough Young Tenors, was acclaimed as one of the best jazz albums of 1991. Since then, he has performed or recorded with many artists, including Cab Calloway, the Wynton Marsalis Septet, Marcus Roberts, Illinois Jacquet, Eric Reed, Roy Hargrove and others.
Tickets are $15 for adults, $13 for seniors and $8 for youth.
Native Ukranian pianist Marina Radyushyna, who began playing piano at age 6, will perform February 16 at 8 p.m. Radyushyna has performed all over the world and been awarded for her work numerous times at the Vladimir Horowitz International Piano Competition, the Arthur Rubinstein International Competition and competitions at the University of Miami and the Cleveland Institute of Music.
Tickets for Marina Radyushyna’s performance are $15 for adults, $13 for seniors and $8 for youth.
March 9 at 8 p.m., don’t miss The Prisoner of Second Avenue starring JoBeth Williams (The Big Chill, Poltergeist, Fever Pitch) and Hector Elizondo (Chicago Hope, Pretty Woman, The Princess Diaries). L.A. Theatre Works presents this Neil Simon comedy in which a stressed-out city man loses his job (and perhaps his mind too) and retreats to his brother’s house in the country, where his neurosis gets worse, not better. L.A. Theatre Works is the premier producer of live radio theatre. This production is staged as if it were on radio and includes as part of the set, a live Foley engineer doing the sound effects. The show is directed by Gordon Hunt (Fraser, Mad About You).
The PSU Alumni Association is sponsoring a dinner option with this event. For more information, call the Office of Alumni Relations at (800) 772-2620.
Tickets are $30-$25 for adults, $28-$23 for seniors and $25-$20 for youth. The show is sponsored by Sodexho Campus Services and Speare Memorial Hospital.
The St. Lawrence String Quartet, performing March 12 at 4 p.m., is a young, energetic group who has toured throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia, performing over 1,500 concerts during the last 15 years. Geoff Nuttall, violin, Barry Shiffman, violin, Lesley Robertson, viola, and Christopher Costanza, cello, have won the Banff International String Quartet Competition, the German Critic’s Award for their recording of Schumann’s First and Third Quartets, and Canada’s annual Juno Award for Best Classical Album. The group is currently the Ensemble in Residence at Stanford University. Their PSU performance will feature works by Mozart, Shostakovich and Schumann.
Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $12 for youth.
Author, actress, activist and self-described “fumerist” (feminist-humorist) Kate Clinton will offer a slice of her biting commentary and insights April 28 at 8 p.m. Kate has appeared on dozens of shows, including Good Morning America, Nightline, Entertainment Tonight, The Rosie O’Donnell Show, The Roseanne Show, The Arsenio Hall Show, Leeza and numerous news and talk shows on Comedy Central, Lifetime, Oxygen, MSNBC, CNN, and C-Span. Her essays on modern life and politics appear in The Advocate, the New York Times and The Progressive. A collection of these essays is published in her latest book, What the L? Her comedy has been recorded on albums such as Comedy You Can Dance To, Read These Lips and the recently released The Marrying Kind.
Tickets for Kate Clinton are $25-$20 for adults, $23-$18 for seniors and $20-$15 for youth.
The Silver Series at PSU comprises professional guest artists whose works reflects the best in American and world cultures. Tickets are available at the Silver Center Box Office at (603) 535-ARTS or (800) 779-3869, or online at hthttp://silver.plymouth.edu.