Encore Series announces 37th season

Encore 2017-18 season

HAYS, Kan. - A wonderful variety of musicals, plays, dance and instrumental music make up the 2017-2018 season of the Encore Performing Arts Series at Fort Hays State University.

"For 37 years, the Encore Series has been a cultural gem of Western Kansas," said Jacob Ternes, chair of the Special Events Committee.

"This season will to continue to bring New York City-caliber performances right here to the Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center stage. I hope our patrons consider purchasing season tickets, because we expect several individual shows to sell out!"

Ternes said there is a show for all audiences on this year's series. The season will open with "Benise: Spanish Nights." A former street musician, Benise began composing original works with powerfully emotional arrangements that are both wild and refined. Additional shows include "Home Free," "The Wizard of Oz," "Dirty Dancing," and "Dance Theatre of Harlem."

This year will also feature a special off-season event: "The Doo Wop Project." Season ticket holders have the option to purchase tickets and retain their dedicated seats, but this special event is not included in the season ticket package.

Season tickets for the 2017-2018 Encore Performing Arts Series are now on sale. Fort Hays State University students, faculty and staff, as well as senior citizens and youth, all receive discounts. For more information call the Memorial Union Student Service Center at 785-628-5306 or visit www.fhsu.edu/encore.

Previous season ticket holders will receive the series booklet in the mail within the next few weeks. The deadline to renew tickets and keep the same seats is Aug. 28.

All performances for the 2017-2018 season start at 7:30 p.m. in the Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center in Sheridan Hall on the FHSU campus.

Fall semester 2017 performances:
Benise: Spanish Nights

Thursday, Sept. 28
Guitar virtuoso Benise and cast return with a brand new show - "Spanish Nights!" Backed by a stage full of musicians and elaborately choreographed dancers, "Spanish Nights" captures world music at its best, featuring the passion and grace of flamenco combined with fiery Spanish guitar. The show also puts a Spanish twist to classic songs from Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones, AC/DC and the Eagles.

Home Free
Thursday, Oct.12
The all-vocal country sensation Home Free will bring Nashville country standards and country-dipped pop hits to town (and having a great time doing so). The five-man band has become known for its show-stopping performances that mix their signature no-instrument, all-vocal music with wit and humor.

Dirty Dancing
Thursday, Oct.19
"Dirty Dancing - The Classic Story On Stage" explodes with heart-pounding music, passionate romance and sensational dancing. Seen by millions across the globe, this hit features "Hungry Eyes," "Hey Baby," "Do You Love Me?" and the "Dirty Dancing" signature song "(I've Had) The Time Of My Life." London's Sunday Express said, "This crowd-pleasing stage adaptation hits the jackpot!"

Off-season event:
The Doo Wop Project

Wednesday, Nov. 29
From bop to pop - the evolution of a sound! This show is three parts Jersey Boys, two parts Motown: The Musical and "your grandma's doo wop," these five charismatic, handsome, triple-threat Broadway stars - with their hot 5-piece band - tear it up with musicality, dancing and showmanship not found with any other group. They "re-doo" classic doo wop songs from the '50s and '60s and make them sound fresh and new. They also take contemporary pop hits by stars like Jason Mraz, Amy Winehouse, Adele and Maroon 5, and "doowopify" them to provide entertainment for people ages 10 to 100.

Spring semester 2018 performances:
The Wizard of Oz

Thursday, Feb. 1
There truly is no place like home as the greatest family musical of all time, the wonderful "Wizard of Oz" twists its way into Hays. The entire family will travel down the Yellow Brick Road and beyond with Dorothy, Toto and their friends the Cowardly Lion, Tin Man and Scarecrow in this lavish production that features breathtaking special effects, dazzling choreography and classic songs.

Dance Theatre of Harlem

Tuesday, Feb. 6
Dance Theatre of Harlem is a leading dance institution acclaimed around the world, encompassing an international touring ballet company, a training school for ballet and the allied arts and Dancing Through Barriers®, a celebrated arts education and community outreach program. The assassination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. compelled Arthur Mitchell, with his mentor Karel Shook, to start a school that would offer children - especially those in his native Harlem - the opportunity to challenge themselves and grow through the study of a classical art form.


Friday, March 9
All singing! All dancing! All big band! Based on Bob Hope's 1942 USO tour to the troops in the field, "ALL HANDS ON DECK!" is a new, two-act revue performed by four charismatic singers/dancers/comics and a nine-piece orchestra featuring the songs, dances and laughs that America has loved since the '40s. From 1941 to 1945, when America was embroiled in a great world war, Hollywood's brightest stars, directors and screenwriters responded to the call of duty by sending real, living entertainment to our men in uniform.

The Reduced Shakespeare Company® in William Shakespeare's Long Lost First Play
Thursday, April 5
Every famous character and Shakespearean plot device come together in a single story so comically outrageous it's no wonder the Bard of Avon hid it away. Historical evidence (possibly imaginary) suggests that this manuscript, Shakespeare's very first written work, is so romantically rich, historically accurate, and theatrically overstuffed that in a stroke of genius, the Bard decided to break it up into the 37 plays (or, depending on recent scholarship, 38, 39) that we know today as the Shakespearean canon.

The Hot Club of San Francisco Presents: Cinema Vivant
Wednesday, April 25
Imagine yourself in the idyllic French countryside in the 1930s. Sometime before dark, a gypsy caravan sets up camp in a field outside of town, luring the locals out for an evening's fun. The wanderers travel with a film projector, pointing it at the side of a barn. As the images flicker to life beneath the stars, gypsy musicians play their guitars and fiddles, matching every movement on the screen with characteristic virtuosity, passion and humor. Reviving this lost entertainment, The Hot Club of San Francisco presents "Cinema Vivant," an evening of vintage silent films accompanied by live gypsy swing.

About the Special Events Committee:
Through the presentation of varied forms of performing arts, the Special Events Committee strives to educate, inspire, evoke thought and entertain. The goal is to promote artistic expression, cultural understanding and social awareness at Fort Hays State University and throughout western Kansas through the presentation of diverse, high-caliber performing arts programs. Many special events, such as Encore Series, are large in scale and have associated costs. Information can be found at www.fhsu.edu/encore.

For more information, contact Jacob Ternes, jaternes@fhsu.edu or 785-628-4664.

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