Performing Arts Series Kicks off 21st Season
Kicking off on September 22, the 21st season of the Performing Arts Series at Hill College will feature acrobats, a vocal ensemble from Estonia, a bell choir, Irish folk music and one of the premier jazz ensembles in the United States. As always, these world class performances are provided to the community free of charge and will take place at the Hill College Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. No tickets are required and seating is first come-first served. A reception will follow each performance, hosted by local community organizations.
Phillip Lowe, coordinator of visual and performing arts at Hill College reports, “Our Performing Arts Series has grown 10-fold over the past 20 years. We started with an initial budget of just $2,000. Now, we are able to bring four to six admission-free musical programs from both the U.S. and around the world to Hill College each year. We encourage our audience to interact with our visiting artists in receptions following each event.”
The season will “come out swinging” as the Dimensions in Blue Jazz Ensemble, a group whose members are part of the larger Air Force Band of the West, bring their big band jazz to Central Texas on Monday, September 22. Made up of musicians recruited from around the country, this premier ensemble has kept the 1940s Glenn Miller Army Air Corps sound at the center of its musical focus, while incorporating a more contemporary sound in order to connect with today’s generation.
Known for their exquisite vocal quality, amazing blends, and perfect intonation, Heinavanker, a vocal ensemble from Tallinn, Estonia, embodies the qualities that delight us when we listen to the human voice soar in harmony, a cappella. Performing since 1996 under the direction of composer Margo Kõlar , this unique ensemble delves into early sacred music, as ancient Estonian runic songs and folk hymns are an important part of their repertoire, in addition to contemporary works. Their sounds will grace the stage at Hill College on Monday, November 3.
On Tuesday, December 2, Baylor University once again supports the Performing Arts Series by sending one of its many fine ensembles to perform. Baylor Bronze performs on five octaves of Schulmerich handbells with the recent addition of eight of the lower 6th & 7th octave of Malmark aluminum "basso profundo" bells. Although their repertoire generally consists of classical, secular and hymn-based arrangements, this performance will have a holiday focus.
Described as an African-style Cirque du Soleil due to the standard of the performers and the quality of the show’s live musical score, Cirque Zuma Zuma will bring their high-energy, high-flying acrobatic performance to Hill College on Tuesday, February 17 to kick off the spring program schedule. This show will include performances of all different types of African culture and feature an array of never before seen talents mixed with some of the best love skills associated with African variety arts. U. S. audiences may remember this group from their performances on America’s Got Talent, on which they were finalists in 2011. Special program note: At this time, the venue for this performance has not been decided but will possibly be the gym on the back side of the Hillsboro campus next to the baseball field. Watch the paper as the event nears for location information.
With their new CD collaboration with 14–time Grammy Award Winner Ricky Skaggs being hailed as “A Masterpiece” by American Music critic Bill Margeson, the Brock McGuire Band brings an internationally recognized brand of traditional Irish music for local audiences to enjoy. The group is fronted by founding members button accordionist and melodeonist Paul Brock and fiddler Manus McGuire, two of Ireland’s most celebrated traditional musicians who have been at the forefront of Irish music for many years. In addition to their Irish fare, the group will sprinkle in their impressive arrangements of American Old Timey, Bluegrass, French-Canadian and the music of other Celtic traditions.
If you would like to support the Hill College Performing Arts Series, you are invited to become a BENEFACTOR ($100), a SUSTAINER ($50), a PATRON ($25), or a SUPPORTER ($10) of the Hill College Performing Arts Series. Also, for a donation of $1,000 or more you can become a LIFETIME BENEFACTOR. Names of lifetime benefactors, benefactors, sustainers, patrons and supporters appear in each program. You may send your donation to: Hill College Music Dept., Attention: Phillip Lowe, 112 Lamar Dr., Hillsboro, TX, 76645.Whether or not you support the series with a monetary gift, we hope you will support the series with your presence, and invite others to these wonderful evenings of entertainment at Hill College. Go to http://www.hillcollege.edu/performingartsseries for more information on the performers and performances and to view promotional videos of each group.