Downtown Ware Center alive with activity - LancasterOnline: Entertainment

Downtown Ware Center alive with activity

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Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 1:46 pm | Updated: 9:59 am, Fri Sep 13, 2013.

That beehive of activity known as The Ware Center is open for business once again.

After taking a winter break, the Millersville University facility at 42 N. Prince St. will host more than 65 events between late this month and the end of May.

A number of series will be ongoing throughout the school year. Among the themes are poetry, jazz, opera, theater, dance, art, film, lectures and a Family Fun Fest for children and parents. "This year is pretty crowded," notes Harvey Owen, center director. "There is something here or at the Winter Center (Millersville University's other major performing arts center, which is on campus) almost every night."

Local performers and a wide array of national and international acts are on the schedule.

"There is a lot of dance this season," Owen says. "And we have a new theater series with one-person plays. And we have upgraded the poetry series with some really cool poetry events - not just recitations."

For example, actress Jane Ridley, who has appeared in a number of shows at the Fulton, will be performing an adaptation of Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself" on Thursday, March 28.

Lancaster's poet laureate, Christine Longenecker, and her husband, Rick Shoup, will perform the poetry of Robert Frost set to music in "The Myriad of Roads Not Taken." It's set for Feb. 7.

Dance concerts will range from Lancaster's own COBALT Dance Co., performing to the music of Vivaldi's "Four Seasons" and Bach's Brandenburg Concertos, Saturday and Sunday, May 18 and 19, to Philadelphia's Carbon Dance Theatre, on Sunday, Feb. 17.

"Rite of Spring: Historic and Contemporary Choreographies," featuring live and filmed dance performances by the Flying Lions Dance Company under the direction of Ting-Yu Chen, is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 27.

Theatre of Transformation will present "Emancipation Sweet," a celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation through words and music. It runs May 30 through June 2.

A number of one-man theatrical events are on the schedule, including "An Evening with C.S. Lewis" with David Payne, who adapted the show from Lewis' "A Grief Observed." The show is on Wednesday, April 10.

"The Unconquerable Spirit of Harriet Tubman," featuring Leslie McCurdy, will tell the amazing story of Tubman, an escaped slave who brought people to freedom. It is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 15.

A wide range of musical concerts will include the Tuvan Throat Singers on Saturday, Feb. 23; the Millersville University Orchestra on Friday, March 8; a classical guitar festival Thursday through Saturday, March 21-23.

And the Cabaret in the Sky series will continue, with Don Stitt performing the music of Johnny Mercer on Friday, May 17, and a New Voices concert, featuring local up-and-coming singers on Saturday, April 20.

Renowned author and illustrator Hilary Knight, who created the drawings for the "Eloise" books, will speak Tuesday, April 23, in an event sponsored by the Lancaster Literary Guild.

Four comedians will be tickling funny bones on Friday, March 15. Be warned, "A Night of Comedy" will be a night for adults only.

But there is plenty for kids to do.

The Family Fun Fest will feature an array of performances geared for kids, including appearances by mime and motion artist Dan Kamin, on Saturday, Feb. 23; an animated short film festival on Saturday, March 23, in which kids can vote for their favorites; and "Cuentos del Arbol" (Tree Tales), which tells a bilingual tale drawn from Spanish and Latin American folklore about a tree that has sheltered many characters, on Saturday, March 9.

It follows Latin Fiesta, on Friday and Saturday, March 8 and 9, which celebrates Latino culture and music.

Art fills the walls of The Ware Center just about all the time, but it will especially do so in March, when the Lancaster County Young Artists Award Exhibition will feature the work of hundreds of local high school students.

The Ware Center's film festival opens Monday, Jan. 28, with a 2013 Oscar nominee for best documentary, "Searching for Sugar Man," about the search for an obscure recording artist by two South African fans.

The film festival will continue through the end of May.


Just because The Ware Center is offering a huge array of concerts, theatrical events, lectures, art shows, films and dance concerts, don't expect the Winter Center on the Millersville campus to be quiet.

From Garrison Keillor, of "Prairie Home Companion" fame, to OperaLancaster's "Faust," the new performing arts center will be busy as well.

"An Evening with Garrison Keillor" will be held Thursday, April 18.

And OperaLancaster's "Faust" in concert will be performed Friday and Saturday, May 10 and 11.

Plenty more is on the schedule at both venues. Go to

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