Gloria Theatre to host Stars on Stage; Live performances throughout 2023


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For the first time in more than a century, top-flight national touring artists are returning the Gloria Theatre in Urbana.

According to the GrandWorks Foundation, the Gloria’s “Stars on Stage” concert series has been nine years in the making.

GrandWorks CEO Staci Weller said, “In 2014, we decided to save the Gloria and follow a hybrid business strategy to give the region a state-of-the-art performing arts center along with our modern big screen movie theatre. After nine years of incredible devotion and support from the community, we’re ready to host these wonderful artists and give everyone some exciting, professional, live entertainment.”

The Gloria was originally the Clifford Theatre, built in 1904 by the famous vaudeville performer, Billy Clifford. For many years it was the place to go for big-time live entertainment.

The historic theatre saw many changes, good times and hard times, before it closed in 2013.

In 2014, the nonprofit GrandWorks adopted a mission to “Reach, Restore, and Revive our Community” by preserving, renovating and remodeling the Gloria.

Schedule of shows

The “Stars on Stage” concert series will host six highly-acclaimed artists, beginning with “The Wildcards” on Saturday, April 22 at 7:30 p.m.

For the release of their hit singles, “Light On” and “Pour the Wine,” The Wildcards’ Ashley Gearing and Andrea Young were honored with Country Music Television’s Songwriters Award, and they are often referred to as “Nashville’s hottest new band.” To stream their music and learn more, go to Tickets start at $27.

Five other award-winning, popular touring artists will showcase a variety of music genres and comedy to complete the 2023 “Stars on Stage” concert series at the Gloria Theatre.

Tommy Ryman will perform Saturday, June 10 at 7:30 p.m., a semi-finalist in Last Comic Standing, is winner of Best of the Midwest at the prestigious Gilda’s Laugh Fest. Ryman grew up with a new-age, folk-singing mother and a traditional, Lutheran insurance-agent father. NBC’s Last Comic Standing judges raved, “they had never seen anything like him, one of a kind, fantastic!” Ryman’s act can be described as absurdist and clever, masked behind a very likable and innocent demeanor. Tickets start at $19.

Pronounced B-Twins, b2wins will perform Saturday, July 22 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $27. This high energy entertainment group continues to captivate audiences worldwide with its unique renditions of crowd favorites. Led by charismatic twin brothers from Brazil, they combine a plethora of genres into a feel-good performance that is equal parts rock concert, dance party, jam session and vacation for the soul.

Six Appeal will perform Saturday, Sept. 16 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $27. National Harmony Sweepstakes Champions, Six Appeal is an ensemble delighting audiences across the country. In 2018, they traveled to Moscow where they won the Grand Prize in the world’s largest a cappella competition. The following year, when the competition was even bigger, Six Appeal returned and defended their title. Widely acclaimed for their perfectly blended harmonies and engaging performances, they put on a terrific show full of favorite hits from several genres and wonderful originals.

Brass Transit is described as one of the most sought-after tribute bands in the world, transporting audiences to the golden age and the musical legacy of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame band, Chicago. Brass Transit brings back that glory with a dynamic, impeccable tribute including all the great hits from 1969 to 1976. Dazzling crowds with “Saturday In The Park,” “25 or 6 to 4,” “You’re The Inspiration,” and dozens more, this fabulously talented band is always in high demand. The band includes veterans of Hall-of-Fame acts like Aretha Franklin, Frankie Valli, the Drifters, and the Mamas & the Papas, just to name a few. Brass Transit will perform at the Gloria on Saturday, Oct. 7 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $37.

Ernie Haase and Signature Sound will finish out the year at the Gloria on Friday, Dec. 8 and Saturday, Dec. 9 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $37. Ernie Haase & Signature Sound (EHSS) is one of the most popular and beloved quartets in the world. As they have grown from their Southern Gospel roots, they’ve added popular music to their heart-warming repertoire. Their “Jazzy Little Christmas” tour has made them one of America’s top choices for a fun and joyful concert full of holiday favorites. EHSS has traveled the world performing unmistakable four-part harmonies and showmanship. With several Gold and Platinum albums, they’ve sung to millions at concerts in Latvia and India to South Africa and New Zealand and events all around America. They are frequently seen on Christian TV shows and have made multiple appearances on ESPN for NASCAR and NBA audiences.

“We really want to encourage everyone to reserve their seats right away because we’re getting a super enthusiastic response and it looks like all of the artists may be playing to sold-out crowds,” said Weller.

For tickets and more information on all the Stars on Stage artists, go to or call the box office at 937-653-4853.

Info from Gloria Theatre/Grandworks Foundation

Info from Gloria Theatre/Grandworks Foundation

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