Rimes, Rawls and Rivers rev up Centre's new season

July 11, 2004

Country star LeAnn Rimes, the legendary Lou Rawls, 1960s pop icon Johnny Rivers and the Boston Pops are among the highlights of the upcoming 31st Anniversary season at Centre College's Norton Center for the Arts.

The program schedule also includes seven Broadway shows, international classical music, dance performances by some of the world's most celebrated artists and concerts by other legendary popular performers.

"This year the Norton Center has one of the strongest lineups it has ever had," said George Foreman, the Norton Center's managing director. "We will be presenting a variety of performances, from orchestras and operas to Broadway's best and popular artists, as we continue to be known as Kentucky's Home to the Stars. We remain committed to bringing the highest quality performances to the students of Centre College and our patrons."

Newlin Hall Series

LeAnn Rimes, the young singer with the Patsy Cline twang and innocent girlish charm, has captured the hearts of listeners around the world. Rimes will greet patrons in holiday style Dec. 6 as she is joined by the Owensboro Symphony Orchestra in a musical celebration of the season. She will perform an evening of traditional songs as well as her own hits.


Also coming for the holiday is the Boston Pops Orchestra. Keith Lockhart will conduct the famous orchestra on Dec. 4 as they return to the Norton Center for this holiday special.

This year, an added performance will be included in the Newlin Hall Series, making a total of nine exciting events. The series opens Oct. 2 with the legendary Lou Rawls bringing a tribute to Frank Sinatra and his own special style as "Rawls Sings Sinatra and Rawls Sings Rawls."

If you saw the movie "The Pianist," you've already heard the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra. With that soundtrack, the orchestra made it to the number two spot of Billboard's classical album list. This prestigious orchestra will present a program of music by Brahms and Rachmaninoff on Oct. 27.

Momix, the dance company, will take to the stage on Nov. 16. Momix sets itself apart by executing daredevil tricks, highlighting the individual talents of its dancers and by intimately using props as inanimate members of the company.

The Broadway production of "Fiddler on the Roof" will bring to the audience the familiar songs of "Matchmaker, Matchmaker" and "Sunrise, Sunset" Dec. 1.

Denyce Graves is a mellow-voiced mezzo-soprano who has performed in the greatest international opera houses and concert halls. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution said, "If the human voice has the power to move you, you will be touched by Denyce Graves." The concert will be Jan. 18.

Legendary folk troupe Moiseyev will perform Feb. 2. The dancers have rigorous ballet and acrobatic training that, when combined with theatrical imagination, creates excitement on the stage.

The Tony Award-winning Gershwin musical "Crazy for You" and features songs such as "Embraceable You" and "I Got Rhythm." It returns to Newlin Hall Feb. 16.

The series concludes at Truvy's Beauty Spot in Chinquapin, La., where a group of women congregate for more than a wash and set in the Broadway production of "Steel Magnolias," set for April 12.

The Show Biz Series

The Show Biz Series has been expanded to nine performances. The series opens with Broadway's longest-running musical revue, "Smokey Joe's Cafe." The performance features such hits as "Charlie Brown," "Love Potion No. 9," "Jailhouse Rock," "Spanish Harlem, and "Stand By Me" and will appear to Oct. 7.

Among the most successful yet underrated solo acts of the 1960s, Johnny Rivers reeled off a series of rock favorites that sold over 30 million copies. Rivers brings his hits, including "Poor Side of Town," "Secret Agent Man," "Memphis," "Maybelline" and "Baby, I Need Your Lovin," to Newlin Hall on Oct. 22.

On Nov. 8, Jamie Farr, the cross-dressing Klinger on "M*A*S*H," transforms himself into George Burns in the Broadway show "Say Goodnight Gracie."

Steve Tyrell made a splash with the "The Way You Look Tonight" in the Steve Martin movie "Father of the Bride," He will appear in concert Jan. 29.

Imagine STOMP meets Jackie Chan at Benihana, and you've got the idea of what the Off Broadway show "Cookin'" is all about. On Feb. 24, four chefs treat you to an evening of laughs and fun as they slice, dice, drum, fight and juggle their way to a wedding banquet.

The 10 acclaimed fiddlers and violinists of Bowfire take the stage on March 29. Bowfire will perform a range of musical styles, from Celtic to country to Texas-style to Bluegrass to gypsy, and more. The cast is backed by piano, keyboards, bass, drums, guitar and cello.

Ladysmith Black Mambazo is one of the most beloved of all African arts ensembles and has worked its musical magic around the world for more than three decades. The Grammy Award winners grew to greater fame with their performance on Paul Simon's "Graceland" album and their music in Disney's film "The Lion King." The 10-member group performs April 5.

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