WORTH THE TRIP
Performing arts venues provide festive holiday fun
Scrooge will be bah humbugging on stages in performing arts venues across Kentucky this holiday season. Sugar plum fairies will be dancing. Church ladies will be gossiping. Children (six in particular) will be misbehaving. And musicians will be rockin’ around holiday themes.
The EKU Center for the Arts opened in early fall to become the largest venue in central Kentucky, a no-expense-spared regional jewel located at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond.
With its 2,012-seat Grand Hall and intimate 250-seat black box theater, the high-tech performance space is able to present programs from Broadway-style touring productions to concerts and dance programs.
Beauty and the Beast will play at 7 p.m. on Sunday, December 4, and The Nutcracker will be presented by The Lexington Ballet at 8 p.m. on Saturday, December 10.
At Northern Kentucky University, A Christmas Survival Guide takes the audience on a hilarious and heartwarming romp right into the urban holiday landscape to find the true essence of Christmas. Directed by Mary Jo Beresford, the revue will be performed in the Corbett Theatre, December 15-22 (with dinner in the Stauss Theatre prior to the show).
The Glema Mahr Center for the Arts, located at Madisonville Community College, is a 37,000-
square-foot performing and visual arts center consisting of a 1,036-seat proscenium main stage theater, which can be converted to a 200-seat black box theater, and a 7,300-square-foot art gallery.
The Center will stage the musical comedy Away in the Basement: A Church Basement Ladies Christmas at 7:30 p.m. December 6. Also on December 17 at 7 p.m. is Christmas at the Glema, an extravaganza featuring an array of choirs (including hand bell, flute, and percussion choirs).
Historic Van Meter Hall, located at Western Kentucky University, was recently renovated to include an electronic orchestra pit, audio/visual area, and redesigned balcony. The 1,048-seat auditorium hosts the musicals produced by WKU’s Department of Theatre and Dance and the Department of Music, and is home to the Symphony at WKU and Orchestra Kentucky. The Symphony Concert Series will present Holiday Pops on December 9; Orchestra Kentucky offers up A Rockin’ Christmas on December 17.
The Gateway Regional Arts Center is a striking venue located in Mt. Sterling. Spread over 12,000 square feet in a renovated historic church, the Center houses the 175-seat Lewis Apperson White Performance Hall, rehearsal room, gift shop, and even a contemporary Kenyan African art collection.
December will be hopping with the opening reception for the Artisan Gift Market in the Arts Center Gallery, December 2, and Christmas in the Arts Center with gingerbread house contest, wreath auction, music and toy displays, and the Artisan Gift Market, December 10-11. (The 25th annual Advent Musicale, December 4, remains in the Ascension Episcopal Church.)
Hopkinsville’s circa 1928 Alhambra Theatre is home to the Pennyroyal Arts Council. The 760-seat proscenium-style Alhambra Theatre presents the annual Live at the Alhambra Series, children’s theater, art exhibits, and more. Drop in December 2, 3, or 4 to see Dickens’ A Christmas Carol by community theater Campanile Productions.
Alhambra Theatre, Hopkinsville
EKU Center for the Arts, Eastern Kentucky University
Gateway Regional Arts Center, Mt. Sterling
Glema Mahr Center for the Arts, Madisonville Community College
Corbett Theatre, Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights
http://theatre.nku.edu/boxoffice to purchase tickets
Van Meter Hall, Western Kentucky University
www.wku.edu/wkuevents (click on “Venue Guide” or “Events Calendar)
More holiday shows across the Bluegrass
Call for times and visit Web sites for more details.
Capitol Arts Center, Bowling Green
The Nutcracker, December 9-11
Grand Theatre, Frankfort
Bluegrass Theatre Guild’s A Tuna Christmas, December 1-3
The Metropolitan Opera’s Rodelinda in HD broadcast, December 4
The Metropolitan Opera’s Faust in HD broadcast, December 11
The Kentuckians Chorus, December 13.
Henderson Fine Arts Center, Henderson Community College
www.henderson.kctcs.edu (search for “Henderson Fine Arts”)
Community Chorus, December 9
Holiday Pops, December 10
A Christmas Carol, December 15
Kentucky Center’s Bomhard Theater, Louisville
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, December 3, 10, and 19, produced by Stage One Family Theatre, www.StageOne.org. (Stage One is also producing Madeline’s Christmas, December 11 and 17 at The Ogle Center, New Albany, Ind., 812-941-2526.)
Lake Cumberland Performing Arts in partnership with The Center for Rural Development, Somerset
Mooseltoe: A New Moosical, December 3
Norton Center for the Arts, Danville
Judy Collins & Arlo Guthrie: Home for the Holidays, December 2
Palace Theatre, Muhlenberg Community Theatre, Greenville
’Twas the Night Before Christmas, December 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, and 11
Phoenix Theatre, Bowling Green
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, presented by The Public Theatre of Kentucky, December 1-11
The Farnsdale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society’s Production of A Christmas Carol, presented by Fountain Square Players, December 15-18
RiverPark Center, Owensboro
The Owensboro Dance Theatre presents The Nutcracker, December 3
The Owensboro Symphony Orchestra presents A Very Merry Holiday Pops!, December 11
RiverPark Center’s Winter Wonderland, including ice skating rink, November 25-January 1
Shelby County Community Theatre, Shelbyville
(502) 633-0242 for tickets
(502) 633-0222 for coming productions
The Homecoming, December 2-4 and 9-11
Thoroughbred Theater, Midway
Country Christmas, December 10
Country New Year’s Eve Show, December 31
Country music and comedy show every Saturday night featuring A Tribute to Country Legends