By Sheri Jardine
Since 2001, Kingsbury Hall Presents has offered an eclectic season of performing artists at Kingsbury Hall on the University of Utah campus. As part of an expanded mission that reaches beyond the boundaries of the Kingsbury Hall stage into other venues and spaces on campus and in the community, the performing arts series has become UtahPresents. This evolution and expansion will infuse the campus and community with unique arts experiences through both live performances and community engagement activities.
“The expanded mission of UtahPresents is to provide an abundance of creative and cultural experiences for the campus and regional community,” said Brooke Horejsi, executive director of UtahPresents and assistant dean for art and creative engagement for the College of Fine Arts. “Kingsbury Hall, the historic venue, and Kingsbury Hall Presents provide us with a strong foundation for this evolution. We are thrilled to announce a new name along with a new season of exciting performances in multiple venues, amazing connections between artists and community members and a diversity of partnerships to deepen our impact.”
A highlight of the upcoming season includes “Mercy Killers,” a one-man show in partnership with the School of Medicine’s Division of Medical Ethics and Humanities that will engage both medical students and the public in dialogue about end-of-life decisions and the cost of health care in America. Another highlight will be an evening with tap legend Savion Glover, in concert with Jack DeJohnette, one of the most influential jazz drummers of his time, in a thrilling performance of percussion and rhythm. Prior to the public performance, Glover will work with junior high students and DeJohnette will share his time and talent with jazz students.
Student attendance at U arts events on campus has skyrocketed in recent years, illuminating a growing thirst for exploration via the arts.
“By providing our students access to a diverse array of live performances, discussions and engaged learning experiences, UtahPresents will help enhance creative thinking, cultivate curiosity and foster collaboration,” said Ruth Watkins, senior vice president for academic affairs. “By engaging in these opportunities, students can be inspired to think creatively about their academic and career goals and to find innovative solutions to complex problems.”
The UtahPresents season begins on Sept. 19, 2015, as the new home of TEDx SaltLakeCity, an all-day event filled with speakers focused on a theme of Upcycled Thinking “Ideas Worth Spreading.” The season also includes Irish musical group Danú giving audiences a taste of Christmas in Ireland, a screening of the documentary “I am Big Bird,” with a Q&A with Caroll Spinney, the man who has been the heart and voice of Big Bird for more than 40 years, and globalFEST, one of the most popular global music festivals in the country.
“UtahPresents will enrich our community through creative and cultural experiences, sharing a global perspective for regular patrons of the arts and novices alike,” said Raymond Tymas-Jones, associate vice president for the arts and dean of the College of Fine Arts. “This infusion of the arts across campus, and into the surrounding community, serves to ensure that what takes place is about more than entertainment – it is also about the value that creativity and the arts bring to our communities.”
UtahPresents 2015-16 Season:
Early Bird tickets for the UtahPresents 2015-16 season will go on sale Monday, June 8 at 10 a.m. Multi-show discounts are available – purchase tickets for three performances to save 10 percent, or purchase five performances to save 20 percent. No handling or facility fees will be charged during Early Bird sales period, which ends on August 17. Additional information is available by calling 801-581-7100 or visiting utahpresents.org.
TEDxSaltLakeCity – Saturday, Sept. 19, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall (not available with Early Bird sales or multi-show discounts, tickets on sale, July 20)
Mnozil Brass – Sunday, Oct. 18, 6:30 p.m. at Libby Gardner Concert Hall, in conjunction with the Virtuoso Concert Series
“Miss Nelson is Missing” – performed by University of Utah Youth Theatre, Friday, Nov. 13, 7 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 14, 11 a.m.* at Kingsbury Hall
*11 a.m. performance is a sensory-friendly performance. Visit the website for details.
Universes: Live From the Edge – Saturday, Dec. 5, 7:30 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
Danú: A Christmas Gathering – Friday, Dec. 11, 7:30 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
“Hello, Dolly!” – performed by the University of Utah Department of Theatre, Friday–Sunday, Jan. 15–17, times vary, at Kingsbury Hall
Northwest Dance Project – Friday, Jan. 22, 7:30 p.m. at Marriott Center for Dance
“I am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story” – followed by live Q&A with Caroll Spinney, Friday, Jan. 29, 7:30 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
Tian Jianan – Tuesday, Feb. 2, 7:30 p.m. at Libby Gardner Concert Hall, in partnership with the Confucius Institute
Timber! • Cirque Alfonse – Thursday, Feb. 4, 7:30 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
Banff Film Festival – Tuesday–Thursday, Feb. 16-18, 7 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall, in partnership with Campus Recreation Services
Radical Reels – Thursday, Feb. 25, 7 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall, in partnership with Campus Recreation Services
globalFEST On the Road • Creole Carnival – Thursday, March 31, 7:30 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
“Die Fledermaus” – performed by University Lyric Opera Ensemble and Utah Philharmonia – Friday–Saturday, April 22-23, 7:30 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
Doktor Kaboom! – Thursday, April 28, 7 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall
For the curious who want to experience artistic creativity pushed beyond the stage, UtahPresents ignites dialogue, explores issues and ideas, catalyzes innovation and connects us.
Sheri Jardine is the communications manager for UtahPresents. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org