Center for the Performing Arts events resume Jan. 18

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Center for the Performing Arts at Penn State’s 2012–13 season of music, theater and dance presentations from around the world continues in January with two months full of diverse presentations. The second half of the performing season starts with pianist Christopher O’Riley and cellist Matt Haimovitz as part of the Center for the Performing Arts Classical Music Project and continues with a host of Centre County or Center for the Performing Arts debuts and collaborations.

O’Riley and Haimovitz join forces in their Shuffle.Play.Listen program to explore the lyrical and virtuosic properties of their instruments in a collaboration that weaves in and out of classical and pop music genres. The program showcases their talents, while helping to define what it means to be a contemporary artist. Brentano String Quartet, ensemble-in-residence at Princeton University, returns for the second season of the Center for the Performing Arts presentation of the complete string quartets by Ludwig van Beethoven. Both events are part of the Center for the Performing Arts Classical Music Project, which includes a variety of engagement activities. To learn more, visit

Two-time Country Music Association Female Vocalist of the Year Kathy Mattea makes her Center for the Performing Arts debut in a February concert focused on music from her 2012 album "Calling Me Home." The West Virginia native’s newest project celebrates the folk music and culture of Appalachia.

The Web-based It Gets Better Project shows young lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people the levels of happiness and potential their lives can reach if they just get through their challenging teen years. In a new collaboration among the project, the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, and Speak Theater Arts, It Gets Better becomes a nationally touring theatrical production. It Gets Better is upbeat, exciting and funny with a narrative that includes moments of pain and pathos. The work develops from members of the chorus working with local performers, citizens and community organizations, including Penn State’s University Choir and Cultural Conversations festival. Together they build a performance, woven with local participants and content, responding to the issue of bullying.

"The Addams Family" makes its Centre County debut in a smash-hit musical comedy that brings the darkly delirious world of Gomez, Morticia, Uncle Fester, Grandma, Wednesday, Pugsley and, of course, Lurch to spooky and spectacular life.

The Lord of the Dance tour features new costumes, set and lighting design. Don Dorcha, Lord of Darkness, challenges the ethereal lord of light, the Lord of the Dance. Battle lines are drawn, passions ignite and a love story fueled by the dramatic leaps and turns of dancers’ bodies builds against a backdrop of Celtic rhythm. The action progresses through more than 20 scenes on a grand scale of precision dancing, dramatic music, colorful costumes and state-of-the-art staging and lighting. MagicSpace Entertainment and Global Entertainment Group present Lord of the Dance. Parking in the Eisenhower Parking Deck is $5 per vehicle for this event. Patrons with Penn State faculty/staff parking permits will not be charged for parking.

Tickets for the nine Center for the Performing Arts presentations and the promoter event Lord of the Dance may be purchased by phone at 814-863-0255 or 800-ARTS-TIX, in person at Eisenhower or Penn State Tickets Downtown or by mail-in order form. For complete details or to download a brochure and order form go to

For information on becoming a Center for the Performing Arts member, contact Dave Shaffer, assistant director for special programs, at 814-863-1167 or

The January and February performances in Eisenhower Auditorium -- unless otherwise noted -- are:

-- Christopher O’Riley, pianist and Matt Haimovitz, cellist: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 18, Schwab Auditorium

-- Soledad Barrio & Noche Flamenca: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 26

-- Kathy Mattea "Calling Me Home": 7:30 p.m. Feb. 1

-- Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles presents It Gets Better: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 7

-- Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal Italian Evening: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 12

-- "The Addams Family": 7:30 p.m. Feb. 14

-- Lord of the Dance: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 17

-- Live at Birdland Featuring The Birdland Big Band: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 20

-- How I Became a Pirate Omaha Theater Company: 2 p.m. Feb. 24

-- Brentano String Quartet: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27, Schwab Auditorium

Artists, programs, dates and times are subject to change.

Last Updated December 11, 2012