“I am very excited about the upcoming season,” said Kirkland
Fine Arts Center’s Director Jan Traughber. “This season has very
unique events that should appeal to not only our established
patron base but hopefully attract new patrons as well. My wish
is to offer quality programming for those that already
appreciate live performing arts, but also to instill an
admiration of the same in the next generation. All events are
appropriate for a multi-generational audience. I hope that more
of the community takes the opportunity to come enjoy the arts
that Millikin University and Kirkland Fine Arts Center has to
Early-order ticket options are available to all the events. If
you purchase tickets for three to five separate events of your
choice you receive 10 percent off your order. Purchase any six
events or more and receive 15 percent off. Single tickets will
go on sale to the public beginning Aug. 25 for all 2014 events.
Single tickets for all 2015 events will go on sale to the public
beginning Dec. 15.
For further information on purchasing tickets, contact the
Kirkland Box Office at 217.424.6318 or visit
kirklandfinearts.com. The following is the lineup of events for
the 2014-2015 season.
American English: Beatles Tribute Band
Friday, Sept. 5, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
American English is simply the best Beatles tribute story of our
time. At the inception of the band, they were voted “number one”
for three consecutive years by thousands of Beatles fans as
winners of sound-a-like contests at Beatlefest. American
English’s demand here and abroad, coupled with their spectacular
fan base, has made them one of the most sought after shows in
theatres worldwide. Come celebrate with the band that is
recognized by Sam Leach, the original Beatles promoter who has
said: “They are without doubt the world’s premier Beatles
tribute band. And a great bunch of lads...just like the Beatles
The Hit Men: Featuring the former stars of Frankie Valli &
The Four Seasons
Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
You loved Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, Tommy James and
the Shondells, Carly Simon, Cat Stevens, Elton John, and Jim
Croce. Come see The Hit Men, an amazing look back through rock
‘n’ roll history featuring former members of these megastar acts
performing your favorite songs from “Oh What a Night,” “Who
Loves You,” “Sherry,” and many other Four Seasons hits to “Peace
Train,” “Crocodile Rock,” “Leroy Brown,” and “Mony Mony.” The
Hit Men will regale you with lots of great stories about what it
was like on the road and in recording sessions with Frankie,
Tommy, Carly, Cat, Jim, and Elton. Relive the glory days of rock
‘n’ roll with The Hit Men.
Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014 – 4 p.m.
Irish pianist John O’Conor has been gathering wonderful reviews
for his masterly playing for over 40 years. Having studied in
his native Dublin, in Vienna with Dieter Weber, and being
tutored by the legendary Wilhelm Kempff his unanimous 1st Prize
at the International Beethoven Piano Competition in Vienna in
1973 opened the door to a career that has brought him all around
His recordings of the complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas led CD
Review to say that he “by now should be recognized as the
world’s premier Beethoven interpreter” and his recent recordings
of the complete Beethoven Piano Concertos with the London
Symphony Orchestra and Andreas Delfs have also been greeted with
Sierra Boggess: “Part of OUR World”
Featuring members of the Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra
Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014 – 8 p.m.
Since her Broadway debut as Ariel in “The Little Mermaid,” 2004
Millikin graduate Sierra Boggess has become one of the most
sought after young artists in the New York and London theatre
markets. Referred to by Tony Award winning Producer/Director
Harold Price as “one of the most talented and intelligent
artists in the musical theatre today,” Sierra dazzles audiences
with her unique brand of charm, humor and virtuosity.
Sierra returns to Millikin directly from her engagement as
Christine Daaé in Broadway’s “The Phantom of the Opera” to
present a one-night only performance sure to delight patrons of
all ages. Based on her critically acclaimed cabaret appearance
at New York’s 54 Below, this eclectic mix of theater and pop
songs brings Sierra back to the Millikin community that first
recognized her star potential.
Golden Dragon Acrobats
Saturday, Nov. 1, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
The Golden Dragon Acrobats represent the best of a time honored
tradition that began more than 25 centuries ago. The Golden
Dragons are recognized throughout the United States and abroad
as the premiere Chinese acrobatic touring company of today.
The reputation of the company is solidly rooted in a commitment
to the highest of production values and an attention to artistic
details that is unparalleled in the art form. World renowned
impresario Danny Chang and choreographer Angela Chang combine
award-winning acrobatics, traditional dance, spectacular
costumes, ancient and contemporary music and theatrical
techniques to present a show of breathtaking skill, and
Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 6 & 7, 2014 – 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.
One of Millikin University’s most popular events, Vespers (which
means “evening prayer”) provides the context for a seasonal
concert that has become one of the University’s most beloved
traditions. Performed by 350 singers and instrumentalists,
Vespers features traditional and new music for choirs and brass.
Individual tickets go on sale Nov. 3.
Saturday, Dec. 13, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
The Millikin University Faculty Jazz Sextet returns once again
to get you in the Holiday spirit with their jazzy swing on
Holiday classics. Upbeat and soothing favorites are sure to make
everyone in the family tap their toes and sing along. Come
celebrate the sounds of the season during the group’s 7th Annual
Holiday concert with Millikin University’s own School of Music
faculty: Dave Burdick, Brian Justison, Chris Nolte, Perry Rask,
Randy Reyman, and Steve Widenhofer. Once again, the sextet will
be joined on stage by guest vocalists and Millikin University
alumni Angel Spiccia Slykas and John Musick.
[to top of second column]
Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Discover the world of stepping with Step Afrika! Like a tap dance
without shoes, or a band without instruments, stepping is percussive
dance that uses kicks, stomps, claps, and chants – all linked to
African and modern dance traditions. As the first professional
company devoted to stepping, DC’s world–renowned Step Afrika! brings
a high-energy performance to the stage: a feast for both the eyes
The Bob Eubanks Not So Newlywed Game
Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
The Bob Eubanks Not So Newlywed Game Show is an evening of laughter,
fun, and prizes. Eubanks, one of show businesses most successful
entrepreneurs, tells backstage stories about some of America’s most
popular celebrities. He also shows hilarious video clips of some of
your favorite game shows. But that’s only part of the fun; someone
has the chance to win $100,000. It’s called the Not So Newlywed
Game, because it doesn’t matter how long you have been together.
Eight lucky couples are chosen at random from the audience to play
the Not So Newlywed Game. The questions are funny, the couples are
funny, and they play for great grand prizes. It’s an evening of
games, prizes, and laughter that you will never forget.
RUNA with special guest Socks in the Frying Pan
Saturday, March 21, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
RUNA draws on the diverse musical backgrounds of its band members
and offers a contemporary and refreshing approach to traditional and
more recently composed Celtic material. Through their repertoire of
both highly energetic and graceful, acoustic melodies, along with
their fusion of music from Ireland, Scotland, Canada, and the United
States, this vocal and instrumental ensemble gives its arrangements
of traditional songs and tunes a fresh sound.
Socks in the Frying Pan is a fresh, young trio from Country Clare
blending Irish traditional melodies with an innovative rhythmic and
Kurt Elling: Elling Swings Sinatra
Saturday, April 11, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Grammy winner Kurt Elling is among the world’s foremost jazz
vocalists. He has won every DownBeat Critics Poll for the last 14
years and has been named “Male Singer of the Year” by the Jazz
Journalists Association eight times in that same span. Every one of
Elling’s 10 albums has been nominated for a Grammy.
Elling’s rich baritone spans four octaves and features both
astonishing technical mastery and emotional depth. His repertoire
includes original compositions and modern interpretations of
standards, all of which are springboards for inspired improvisation,
scatting, spoken word, and poetry.
Saturday, May 2, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Three actors voice the dozens of characters, a Foley artist creates
all the sound effects, and a pianist plays a cinematic score, while
more than 1,250 individual, full-color, hi-res comic book panels
tell a hilarious sci-fi adventure story visually from an enormous
movie screen, and it’s all done live in front of your eyes.
The Intergalactic Nemesis has been featured on NPR, PBS, Conan
O’Brien, the Wall Street Journal, and dozens of other outlets. The
New York Post called its limited run on Broadway “Great fun! (A)
happily retro multimedia extravaganza,” the Cleveland Examiner
called it “pure theater magic,” and The Austinist recommended it as
“totally nuts and a ton of fun…Do not miss it.”
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Millikin University believes that the arts are essential to the
enrichment of society and a fundamental part of the educational
process. Millikin’s founder, James Millikin, declared that men and
women should have both a classical and practical education to meet
the demands of a changing society. The Kirkland Performing Arts
Series supports this mission by encouraging both students and the
community to participate in its programs and understand its
multicultural heritage through performing arts events.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center is the primary not-for-profit fine arts
presenting organization in Macon County. During past seasons, over
400 professional performances have been staged at Kirkland, with
Broadway tours of CATS, Showboat, and RENT, Grammy award nominees
including Patti Page, The Neville Brothers, and Little Richard,
animal kingdom expert Jack Hannah, PostSecret blog founder Frank
Warren, internationally acclaimed dance companies David Parsons,
River North, Cirque Eloize, and MOMIX, popular celebrities Bill
Cosby and Howie Mandel, comedian Jay Leno, environmental advocates
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Jean-Michel Cousteau, performing
ensembles including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Juilliard String
Quartet, and London City Opera, and speeches by distinguished guests
like White House correspondent Helen Thomas, former Secretary of
State Colin Powell, and former Illinois governor Jim Edgar.
For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit
kirklandfinearts.com Events at the Kirkland Fine
Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois
Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
[Text received; MEDIA RELATION,
MILLIKIN UNIVERSITY/KIRKLAND FINE ARTS CENTER]