NEWSLETTER ARTICLE: New Local Arts Leaders!

Just wanted to let you know about two new local hires in the South Bend arts scene! First up the South Bend Symphony Orchestra has found the successor to Tsung Yeh. The new maestro is Alastair Willis! Here is a little info on Mr. Willis:

“The Grammy-nominated conductor Alastair Willis has guest conducted orchestras around the world.  Most recently, he completed a successful tenure as Music Director of the Illinois Symphony Orchestra, which serves the communities of Springfield and Bloomington/Normal.  Willis has been a staff conductor for the Seattle Symphony, the Florida Orchestra, the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestras; and led acclaimed ensembles including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the New York Philharmonic as a guest conductor, as well as Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble”.

Born in Acton, Massachusetts, Alastair Willis spent his formative years in the United Kingdom.  He received his Bachelor’s Degree with Honors from England’s Bristol University and an Education Degree from Kingston University.  He then moved to the United States and earned a Master’s Degree in Music from Rice University.  He currently resides in Seattle with his family, and is looking forward to making South Bend his second home.”

We look forward to having Mr. Willis in the building when the SBSO returns to the Leighton!

 

Next up, Shakespeare at Notre Dame’s own Aaron Nichols has been named the Executive Director of South Bend Civic Theatre. Aaron’s been a part of the NDSF for many years and we’re going to miss him around here. Here’s his bio for those who don’t know him:

“Nichols comes to SBCT from the University of Notre Dame, where he most recently served as audience development manager for Shakespeare at Notre Dame. He also brings experience in human resources, communications, and operations from eight years of service with global manufacturer NIBCO Inc. Nichols is an active member of the local performing arts community, with acting and directing credits at SBCT, The Acting Ensemble, Elkhart Civic Theatre, the Notre Dame Department of Film, Television, and Theatre, and the Bethel College Theater Arts Department. Nichols was graduated from Taylor University, Upland, Ind., with a bachelor of arts in mass communications. He is presently completing an Executive Program in Arts and Culture Strategy with National Arts Strategies at the University of Pennsylvania.”

All of us who know Aaron know how good a fit he is for this job. Congrats go out to Aaron and we wish him the best!

 


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NEWSLETTER ARTICLE: Third Coast Percussion at the GRAMMYS!

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After their soon to be triumphant performance in the Leighton on Saturday night, the gentlemen of Third Coast Percussion will be going to Hollywood for next weekend’s GRAMMYS. They are nominated for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for their piece Steve Reich. In addition to being nominated, they will be performing! They are part of the Premiere Ceremony which will be streamed live on GRAMMY.com/live next Sunday February 12th starting at 12:30 PM. We wish them the best of luck!

Here is the official GRAMMY press release:

The GRAMMY Awards Premiere Ceremony will take place at Microsoft Theater on Sunday, Feb. 12 from 12:30–3:30 p.m. PT and will be streamed live internationally via GRAMMY.com/live.

Preceding the 59th Annual GRAMMY Awards telecast, the Premiere Ceremony will be hosted by current GRAMMY nominee Margaret Cho and will feature performances by current nominees Judy Collins, Ravi Coltrane, Ziggy Marley, Carla Morrison, Northern Cree, O’Connor Band With Mark O’Connor, and Third Coast Percussion.

Presenting the first GRAMMY Awards of the day in approximately 70 categories will be five-time GRAMMY winner Jimmy Jam and current nominees Lauren Daigle, For King & Country, Sarah Jarosz, René Marie, Mýa, and Brendon Urie from Panic! At The Disco.

The live stream of the Premiere Ceremony will remain on GRAMMY.com as video on demand for 90 days following the event. The 59th Annual GRAMMY Awards will be broadcast live on CBS at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.

https://www.grammy.com/news/grammy-awards-premiere-ceremony-everything-you-need-to-know

CENTER HIGHLIGHT: Christmas Party 2016!

It was great seeing many of you on this very cold Monday night. At least it was warm in the Center! I’m glad we didn’t have the dinner in the Usher Locker Room. It’s usually 30 below in there!

photo-6Let’s recap for those of you who couldn’t make it. To start off our night Ted introduced our new Cinema Program Director Ricky Herbst. Ricky’s first day was on Monday and what a better way to start a job than getting to meet all of you…plus free dinner! We look forward to many years with Ricky on our team.

Don then gave the blessing and we remembered those loved ones we lost this year including ushers Alice Osberger and Tom Walsh.

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After dinner we each reminisced by sharing Christmas memories and the best Christmas gift we received. The stories were great to hear. We all learned a little bit about each other and you definitely felt the Christmas spirit in the room.

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Reynaldo shared with us his gift of song! He sang the official Reynaldo version of Winter Wonderland with his own custom lyrics. (See lyrics below!) Everyone was most entertained!

 

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We closed the night with a performance by the new campus group Tiramisu. The group is made up of graduate students in the Sacred Music Department. They formed this year and have already performed with Eileen Ivers and as part of the Messiah shows. They treated us to several festive songs and closed with a sing along of We Wish You a Merry Christmas. A wonderful way to end a wonderful evening.

For those who were unable to be with us, we will be mailing you a Christmas card which contains your Spring 2017 Presenting Series discount voucher.  Please let us know if you don’t receive one by the end of next week.

Thanks to all of you for giving us so much of your time this year!

 

As promised, here are Reynaldo’s song lyrics:

SHOVELING IN A WINTER WONDERLAND

 (intro)

It’s Saturday morning and you slept late.

You’re feeling kinda creaky, but that’s just fate.

The furnace is running, the fuel bill is stunning the budget,

Doom, doom, doom.

 

You head for the kitchen, to the forecast you listen.

It’s starting to snow, but you’ve nowhere to go,

and you’ve got plenty of groceries on hand.

 

Gone away is the summer.  To get around you need a Hummer.

You wish it were spring, so the birdies could sing.

Oh, why do they call it Winter Wonderland?

 

The weatherman is saying seven inches,

With a little luck, only five.

He must be taking lessons from the grinches.

It’s already getting deeper in the drive.

 

Later on, you’ll perspire, as your back is getting tired.

A long way to go, and the going is slow,

Shoveling in a winter wonderland.

 

Snowblower died last Sunday.

It coughed and it shuddered to a stop.

You’ll have the cash to fix it someday.

For now you gotta shovel til you drop.

 

Working hard, and you’re sweating, near the end you are getting

But here comes a plow, gonna plow you in now.

Keep shoveling in your winter wonderland.

 

Original re-lyrics by Reynaldo Hernandez. Reprinted by permission.

SPECIAL EVENT: Guest Services Usher Recognition Ceremony, Dinner and Screening!

You’ll notice that you are all signed up for the event on Wednesday June 8th. If you can make it please confirm so we can get an accurate headcount. If you can’t make it, please remove yourself from the shift and we promise not to hold a grudge! As with years prior we will be ordering chicken and welcome you to bring side dishes and desserts. We normally have an astounding amount of fried chicken but this year we’ll mix it up and get grilled chicken as well. (I guess that might be healthier.) So we can get an idea of what percentage of fried and grilled chicken we should get, please send us an email with your preference so we’ll get enough of both. Also if you have any other dietary concerns please let us know.

For the recognition part, we’ll be handing out our hours pins to those ushers who’ve passed our milestones.

raiders-of-the-lost-arkThen we’ll close the evening with a screening. This summer Interim Executive Director Ted is planning a summer series of movie classics on Wednesdays starting in July. We’d like to do an unofficial kick off for this and show a classic film that represents summer escapism at its finest. We’ll be showing the 1981 classic adventure RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK. It’ll be great to see Indiana Jones on the big screen…in Indiana! Hope you can all stay to enjoy!