Arts center celebrates 25 years


SPRINGFIELD – The Clark State Community College Performing Arts Center will celebrate its 25th anniversary with a diverse schedule of events and performances to commemorate the establishment of the landmark venue.

The Performing Arts Center (PAC) will kick-off the 2018-19 season on September 14 with an Evening of Jazz with Graham Breedlove, followed by the Circle of Friends Gala featuring the National Broadway Tour of Jersey Boys on September 29.

“For the 25th anniversary, I tried to touch upon as many genres as possible to make it a diverse season with a broad stroke of different types of programming to honor and celebrate the 25 years of the PAC,” said Adele Adkins, executive director of the Clark State Performing Arts Center. “Everything I book is selected with a thought or reason behind it. Some events are pure entertainment and some are artistically relevant.”

When the PAC opens its doors on September 14, patrons will notice an array of capital fund improvements including a new roof and new carpet. Facility upgrades were also made behind the scenes including the installation of a new dimmer rack which controls theater lighting.

The year-long 25th anniversary celebration will feature the National Broadway Tour of the Jersey Boys on Saturday, September 29. The Jersey Boys will be the highlight of the Circle of Friends Gala, a black tie event including a reception, dinner and the show. Festivities will begin at 5 p.m. Tickets are on sale now.

Adkins is “particularly excited” about the October 26 performance of Choir of Man. “This will be their first US tour and the PAC was the first venue that reached out to book them,” she said. “I wanted the whole season to be a celebration, but this will be a party. Their set is a working pub where they pour beer for the audience and people can dance on stage. They are so much fun – they get people dancing and clapping. The audience will recognize the songs they sing.”

Choir of Man, a multi-talented cast of nine men, is known across the globe as “the ultimate-feel good show,” and offers up 90 minutes of harmonies, high-energy dance and live percussion with foot-stomping choreography.

The 2018-19 season will feature four National Broadway Tours and the return of The Illusionists for their fourth show at the PAC.

Tickets for the Clark State Performing Arts Center 2018-19 season events go on sale July 16 at

The 2018-19 Clark State Performing Arts Center Season:

An Evening of Jazz With Graham Breedlove Special Guest: Award-Winning Vocalist Lucy Breedlove Friday, September 14, 2018, at 8 p.m.

Since taking up the trumpet at age 12 in his hometown of Lafayette, LA, Graham Breedlove has performed on four continents in more than 20 countries, with headliners representing more than 100 Grammy nominations. Graham is listed in the book Trumpet Greats, which is “a biographical dictionary of famous trumpeters since the Baroque Era” by noted educator/author/trumpeter David Hickman.

Jersey Boys – National Broadway Tour Circle of Friends Gala Saturday, September 29, 2018, at 8 p.m.

They were just four guys from Jersey, until they sang their very first note. They had a sound nobody had ever heard…and the radio just couldn’t get enough. But while their harmonies were perfect on stage, off stage it was a very different story—a story that has made them an international sensation all over again.

The Illusionists | Live from Broadway Wednesday, October 10, 2018, at 7:30 p.m.

This mind-blowing spectacular showcases the jaw dropping talents of five of the most incredible illusionists on earth. THE ILLUSIONISTS – LIVE FROM BROADWAY ™ has shattered box office records across the globe and dazzles audiences of all ages with a powerful mix of the most outrageous and astonishing acts ever to be seen on stage. This non-stop show is packed with thrilling and sophisticated magic of unprecedented proportions.

Nobuntu Friday, October 12, 2018, at 8 p.m.

Nobuntu, the female a cappella quintet from Zimbabwe, has drawn international acclaim for its inventive performances that range from traditional Zimbabwean songs to Afro jazz to gospel. The ensemble’s concerts are performed with pure voices, augmented by minimalistic percussion, traditional instruments such as the Mbira (thumb piano) and organic, authentic dance movements.

The Choir of Man Friday, October 26, 2018, at 8 p.m.

The runaway hit of numerous international music festivals is hitting the road for its first U.S. tour! Known across the globe as “the ultimate-feel good show,” The Choir of Man offers up 90 minutes of indisputable joy! It’s a party. It’s a concert. It’s a pint-filled good time set in a working pub (free beer anyone?!?) that combines hair-raising harmonies, high-energy dance and live percussion with foot-stomping choreography. The multi-talented cast of nine handsome blokes sings everything – pub tunes, folk, opera, classic rock – all to roof-raising heights. It’s the best singing, dancing, stomping, pub crawl of a concert you’ll ever attend!

Thompson Square Saturday, November 17, 2018, at 8 p.m.

With romantically charged #1 hits like “Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not” and “If I Didn’t Have You,” multi-platinum international success and honors as Vocal Duo of the Year from both the ACM and CMA Awards, country duo Thompson Square admit they don’t have much left on their bucket list. So for the husband-and-wife team of Keifer and Shawna Thompson, the next chapter of their career is about something different. Working independently for the first time, the album Masterpiece arrives at a tipping-point moment for the duo – and it finds them taking skillful control of their acclaimed musical bond.

Rock of Ages | National Broadway Tour Thursday, January 17, 2019, at 7:30 p.m.

Broadway’s Best Party is turning up the volume to ten! Nominated for five Tony Awards®, ROCK OF AGES captures the iconic era of 1980s Hollywood. Featuring the music of hit bands such as Styx, Poison, Twisted Sister, Whitesnake and more, this 10th anniversary production will have you ready to rock!

Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab Wednesday, January 23, 2019, at 7 p.m.

Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab is a professor of higher education policy and sociology at Temple University and founder of the Wisconsin HOPE Lab, the nation’s only action research laboratory seeking ways to make college more affordable. She is best known for her innovative research on food and housing insecurity in higher education, having led the three largest national studies on the subject, and for her work on making public higher education free. Her latest book Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid, and the Betrayal of the American Dream (University of Chicago, 2016) is an Amazon best-seller, a 2018 winner of the Grawemeyer Award and has been featured on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley Aquila Theatre Company of London Thursday, February 14, 2019, at 7:30 p.m.

Written two centuries ago in 1818 by Mary Shelley, FRANKENSTEIN: The Modern Prometheus is the first true science fiction novel. Years ahead of its time, the story has since become the inspiration for countless film and stage adaptations. Frankenstein is a living, breathing, gruesome outcome of scientific discovery. The piece raises an important universal question about the nature of innovation.

CeCe Winans Saturday, February 16, 2019, at 8 p.m.

The best-selling and most-awarded female gospel artist of all time, CeCe Winans has long since cemented her status as one of the most accomplished and celebrated women in modern music history. It’d be easy to look back and rest on such illustrious laurels, but Winans has always had her eyes fixed firmly on the future, so it should come as little surprise that she jumped at the opportunity when her son, Alvin Love III, proposed she record the generation-bridging new album “Let Them Fall in Love.” Her first in nearly a decade, the record finds Winans returning to the studio with gusto, working for roughly three years to craft her most confident, adventurous collection yet.

Cirque Mechanics: 42ft A Menagerie of Mechanical Marvels Friday, March 8, 2019, at 8 p.m.

Cirque Mechanics quickly established itself as a premiere American circus, with its unique approach to performance, inspiring storytelling and innovative mechanical staging. Spectacle Magazine hailed it as “the greatest contribution to the American circus since Cirque du Soleil.” Cirque Mechanics, although inspired by modern circus, finds its roots in the mechanical and its heart in the stories of American ingenuity. The shows, rooted in realism, display a raw quality rarely found in modern circus, which makes their message timeless and relevant. The stories are wrapped in circus acrobatics, mechanical wonders and a bit of clowning around. The troupe has created four extraordinary productions; Birdhouse Factory, Boomtown, Pedal Punk, and new for the 18-19 season – 42FT- A Menagerie of Mechanics Marvels.

Vienna Boys Choir Saturday, March 16, 2019, at 8 p.m.

The Vienna Boys Choir, renowned as one of the finest vocal ensembles in the world for over five centuries, is a frequent visitor to North America, performing throughout the country in everything from houses of worship to great concert venues like New York’s Carnegie Hall and Chicago’s Symphony Hall. The enormously popular chorus is actually comprised of four separate ensembles of boys between the ages of 10 and 14, totaling choristers at the Vienna Boys Choir school at any given time. Approximately eleven weeks of the school year are devoted to touring, and each choir member sings about 80 concerts a year. Many of the boys have siblings, fathers, uncles and even grandfathers who have also been members of the choir. The Vienna Boys Choir can trace its history as far back as the 13th century but it was formally established at Vienna’s Imperial Chapel in 1498 by Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I. The many incarnations of the group have been performing continuously ever since. The modern Vienna Boys Choir represents quite a departure from the composition of the original medieval choir of six boys. Today’s Vienna Boys Choir is comprised of talented young singers from all over the world who are admitted by audition.

Sound of Music – National Broadway Tour Co-Presented with The Springfield Arts Council Friday, May 3, 2019 at 8 p.m.

The hills are alive! A brand new production of The Sound of Music is coming to the Clark State Performing Arts Center. The beloved musical story of Maria and the von Trapp Family will once again thrill audiences with its Tony®, Grammy® and Academy Award® winning Best Score, including “My Favorite Things,” “Edelweiss” and the title song “The Sound of Music” enjoyed extraordinary success as a live television production when “The Sound of Music Live!” aired on NBC in December 2013 and was seen by over 44 million people. The film version continues to be the most successful movie musical in history.

The Choir of Man will perform Oct. 26 at 8 p.m. at the Clark State Performing Arts Center. Choir of Man will perform Oct. 26 at 8 p.m. at the Clark State Performing Arts Center. Submitted photo
Performing Arts Center offers diverse season, Red Carpet Gala

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About Clark State Community College: Founded in 1962, Clark State Community College has campuses in Springfield, Beavercreek and Bellefontaine. Clark State offers the latest degree and certificate options in more than 125 professional fields. The total economic impact of Clark State on Champaign, Clark, Greene and Logan Counties reached approximately $161 million in 2016. Registration is open year-round, and financial aid is available for those who qualify.

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