When the Lied Center opened in 1993, its first performance was "The Secret Garden."
The choice was a prophetic one, executive director Tim Van Leer said Sunday during the announcement of the venue's 10th anniversary season.
That's because during the past decade, the Lied Center has seen both annuals and perennials bloom in its midst and has nurtured the growth of audiences and performers alike. The annuals are acts that come through town only once but shine brightly while they're here. The perennials are the performers that so capture the imaginations of audiences that they're asked to come back year after year.
Both are on the bill for the 2003-2004 season, the official 10th birthday of the Lied Center and the 100th birthday of Kansas University's Concert Series.
Lied Center officials announced the 10th anniversary season Sunday evening, after a performance by the male vocal ensemble Cantus. Several hundred people, including members of the Cantus audience, Lied Center staff and donors, ventured onto center stage for a catered reception and a tour through the upcoming season.
It begins with a 10th birthday party Aug. 22 on the Lied Center lawn, where the Alison Brown Quartet will play a free concert. Brown is a Grammy Award-winning banjo player known for her fusion of jazz, classical, pop, folk and Latin styles. Birthday cake will be served and balloons, face painting, clowns and prize giveaways will be among the festivities.
Cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble will be featured next April in an anniversary special event.
Returning to conduct a statewide education residency will be flutist and American Indian hoop dancer Kevin Locke. Locke's appearances, as well as a February performance by American Indian singer-songwriter Joanne Shenandoah, are continuations of the Lied Center's relationship with Lawrence's Indian community and Haskell Indian Nations University. The 2003-2004 season marks the third and final year of the Civic Dialogue Project.
Other highlights include Broadway hits such as "Cats," "Fame" and "Grease"; returning favorites Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Diavolo Dance Theater and minimalist composer Philip Glass, who will appear with Bang on a Can All-Stars and Terry Riley in May 2004.
The Lied Center Series is composed of the Concert Series (founded in 1903), the Swarthout Chamber Music Series (1947), the New Directions Series (1987), the Broadway & Beyond Series (1994), the Lied Family Series (1996) and the World Series (2000).
Here's a look at the full line-up of upcoming performances:
- 7:30 p.m. Oct. 8, Miami City Ballet. The company celebrates the 100th anniversary of George Balanchine's birth by highlighting the artistic collaboration between this legend of dance and composer Igor Stravinsky. The program includes the Stravinsky Violin Concerto, Symphony in Three Movements and "Apollo."
- 7:30 p.m. Oct. 22, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, Murray Perahia, conductor and piano soloist. The world's most-recorded chamber orchestra will perform Mozart's Adagio and Fugue in C minor, K. 546; Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15; Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 in D major, BWV 1050; and Mozart's Symphony No. 41 in C major, K. 551, "Jupiter."
- 7:30 p.m. Feb. 7, Canadian Brass. The group's new tour, titled "Amazing Brass," will include a wide range of music from composers such as Gershwin, Gabrieli, Bach, Pachelbel, Handel, Jelly Roll Morton, W.C. Handy, Michael Kamen, Glen Miller and Tommy Dorsey.
- 7:30 p.m. March 5, Verdi's "La Traviata." This classic tragedy focuses on the gossip and jealousy that haunts Alfredo and Violetta, whose discovery of true love comes too late.
Swarthout Chamber Music Series
- 2 p.m. Oct. 12, TakÃ¡cs Quartet. The Boulder, Colo.-based quartet will perform an all-Beethoven program that includes String Quartet, Op. 18, No. 1; String Quartet, Op. 74, No. 10; and String Quartet, Op. 130, No. 13, with Finale -- representing the early, middle and later periods of the composer's life.
- 2 p.m. Nov. 9, eighth blackbird, contemporary chamber sextet. The group's unique name was derived from the Wallace Stevens poem, "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird," inspired by the verse, "... noble accents and lucid, inescapable rhythms."
- 2 p.m. Feb. 22, St. Lawrence String Quartet. The ensemble will perform a work commissioned by the Lied Center titled "Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind" by Osvaldo Golijov, with special guest Todd Palmer, clarinet. Other selections will include the Haydn String Quartet in B minor, Op. 64, No. 2 and Ravel's String Quartet.
- 2 p.m. March 14, Concertante, chamber music octet. This group is composed of Juilliard School graduates who are continuing their musical collaborations. For its Lied Center debut performance, Concertante will perform Shostakovich's Two Pieces for String Octet, Op. 11; Enesco's Octet in C major, Op. 7; and Mendelssohn's Octet in E-flat major, Op. 20.
New Directions Series
- 7:30 p.m. Oct. 4, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. As part of its program, the troupe will perform a new piece co-commissioned by the Lied Center.
- 7:30 p.m. Nov. 7, Aquila Theatre Company in "Othello." The group brings its unique passion and style to Shakespeare's "Othello." Set in a hotbed of racial hatred, jealousy and mistrust, this Machiavellian masterpiece explores the destruction of a noble spirit.
- 7:30 p.m. Feb. 26, Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, and Colin Currie, percussion. Four of the world's hottest guitarists team up with a gifted percussionist to perform a program that features new arrangements of quartet favorites, such as "Carmen Fantasy" and "Bantu." The Lied Center also has co-commissioned five new works from classical composers Michael Torke and Steve Mackey, jazz composer/drummer Peter Erskine, and world music specialist David Maric.
- 7:30 p.m. April 16, Diavolo Dance Theater. Artistic Director Jacques Heim includes a large-scale aluminum set designed by Adam Davis and video projections by David Brady in the new work "DreamCatcher," performed by a troupe composed of dancers, actors and gymnasts. The piece was co-commissioned by the Lied Center.
- 7:30 p.m. May 1, Bang on a Can All-Stars, with special guests Terry Riley and Philip Glass. Born out of the Bang on a Can Festival, the six artists that make up the All-Stars combine an intense performance approach with adventurous styles. They are joined by minimalist composers Terry Riley and Philip Glass.
Broadway & Beyond Series
- 7:30 p.m. Sept. 20, "Fame." This high-energy musical was inspired by the Academy Award-winning movie and television program of the same name. It follows the ups and downs of students at New York's High School for the Performing Arts as they chase their dreams.
- 7:30 p.m. Nov. 15, Meredith Willson's "The Music Man." An all-American salute to music, romance and fast-talking flim-flam, featuring familiar tunes, such as "Seventy-Six Trombones" and "Gary, Indiana."
- 7:30 p.m. Feb. 17-18, "CATS." Based on T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats," Andrew Lloyd Webber's version of these poems is now the longest continuously touring musical in America.
- 7:30 p.m. March 16, "Grease." The classic-rock sounds of the 1950s return with songs such as "We Go Together," "Beauty School Dropout" and "You're the One That I Want."
- 7:30 p.m. April 8, Gilbert and Sullivan's "The Pirates of Penzance." The story of how Frederic accidentally becomes a pirate, and his struggles with romance and honor, features songs such as "I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major-General" and "A Rollicking Band of Pirates We."
Lied Family Series
- 7:30 p.m. Sept. 9-10, "Sing-A-Long Wizard of Oz." An interactive theatrical event that guides audiences on a trip through Oz using song and fully-restored video footage.
- 7:30 p.m. Oct. 28, Scrap Arts Music, cutting-edge percussion. Original music and hyper-kinetic movements unite with man-made musical gear to create sounds and sights unfamiliar to most audiences. Five athletic percussionists perform with 25 instruments specially designed for this show.
- 7:30 p.m. Feb. 13, Joanne Shenandoah, American Indian vocalist. This award-winning American Indian composer, vocalist and performer is a Wolf Clan member of the Iroquois Confederacy, Oneida Nation. (Also part of the World Series).
- 7:30 p.m. April 2, Scottish Rant, Bonnie Rideout Scottish Trio with the City of Washington Pipe Band. The Bonnie Rideout Scottish Trio plays traditional and modern forms of Scottish music. Joined by a Celtic percussionist and guitarist, this three-time, U.S.-Scottish fiddle champion accentuates her performances with vocal work and storytelling. (Also part of the World Series).
- 7:30 p.m. Oct. 10, Woven Harmony, Robert Bluestone, classical guitarist, and Rebecca Bluestone, tapestry artist. This husband-and-wife team explores the complex relationship between warp and weave, wood and string.
- 7:30 p.m. Nov. 1, Wadaiko Yamato, the Drummers of Japan. Working in the Taiko style, an art form that originated more than 1,400 years ago in Japan, this production features a family of drums of varying sizes played by 11 musicians.
- 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14, La Bottine Souriante, French-Canadian ensemble. This nine-member ensemble includes players of accordion, harmonica, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, piano, bass, saxophone, trombone and trumpet.
- 8 p.m. April 17, Yo-Yo Ma with the Silk Road Ensemble, anniversary special event. The performance will feature Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble -- a collaboration that promotes the study of the cultural, artistic and intellectual traditions along the ancient Silk Road trade route that stretched from the Mediterranean Sea to the Pacific Ocean.
- 7 p.m. Aug. 22, Alison Brown Quartet, free outdoor concert. Performing on the Lied Center's northeast lawn, this Grammy Award-winning banjo player will be backed by piano, bass and drums.
- 6 p.m. Aug. 22, Family Arts Festival and Birthday Party. The Lied Center's 10th birthday party, complete with cake, balloons, face painting, clowns, prize giveaways and other activities.
- 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Oct. 14, school-only performances, "The Emperor's New Clothes," by Lawrence resident Ric Averill, presented by The Kennedy Center Imagination Celebration on Tour. Hans Christian Andersen provides the story for this performance, which offers an introduction to opera and a humorous interpretation of the timeless classic, "The Emperor's New Clothes."
- Sept. 2-5, Kevin Locke, Statewide Education Residency. Known for his flute playing and interpretation of the Native hoop dance, Locke has worked with more than 10,000 people in 10 Kansas counties during the past five seasons. He returns for a one-week statewide residency project in Holton and Mayetta.