Summer isn’t over yet, but for those looking ahead, the off-season concert season at Interlochen Center for the Arts promises a bit of everything. Returning favorites the Nutcracker and MOMIX are balanced by new arrivals including jazz pianist Fred Hersch and the Calidore String Quartet (view the Interlochen Performing Arts Series lineup below).
It’s all part of the plan, according to Rory Baker, executive director of Interlochen Presents!, the concert arm of the famed arts institution. “We look to diversity,” says Baker. “The whole point is to engage the community.”
While he was speaking about Winterlochen, the annual winter celebration of arts and the season, that approach applies to the entire slate of performances. For example, the appearance of celebrated jazz pianist Fred Hersch won’t be at Interlochen at all. “It’s unique in that we’re partnering with Dennos Museum, presenting the show at Milliken Auditorium,” Baker says.
Then there is the ongoing series “Artists from Interlochen at Kirkbride Hall.” It finds faculty members from Interlochen Center for the Arts performing in Traverse City at the Village at Grand Traverse Commons.
Besides sharing performing artists with audiences from around the region, the artists share their knowledge and expertise with the students. Baker says showcase concerts provide opportunities for students to interact and learn from professionals. The artists often host master classes and workshops so those pursuing the arts at Interlochen can get up close and personal with those making a living in the arts.
This year’s Performing Arts Series boasts a large theatrical component. ICA will present classic plays Tuck Everlasting, Oedipus Rex, A Streetcar Named Desire and the Tony Award-winning musical, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. While Broadway’s Next Hit Musical might sound like it fits right alongside those, it is actually an improvised comedy show based on audience suggestions. Comic writer David Sedaris will also be on campus.
Interlochen made its reputation on classical music, and there is no shortage of performances by renowned classical groups. Cellist Joshua Roman was appointed principal cellist of the Seattle Symphony orchestra at the age of 22 in 2006, becoming the youngest principal player in the symphony’s history. He’s joining forces with the equally praised JACK Quartet. That’s just one of three performances by string quartets, as the Juilliard String Quartet and the Calidore String Quartet will also be performing on campus. Also on tap is the Goldstein-Peled-Fiterstein Trio, with piano, cello and clarinet performing music by Beethoven, Verdi, Debussy and more.
Modern classicists are also in luck. Interlochen is presenting a two-day Steve Reich Festival. That’s a particular highlight for Baker, an avowed fan of minimalist composers such as Reich, Philip Glass and John Adams. The IAA Percussion Ensemble will perform music from the composer’s “Drumming,” while guest artists eighth blackbird and Third Coast Percussion will perform “Music for 18 Musicians.”
In addition to the concerts and performances, the fall lineup from the Interlochen College of Creative Arts also promises great opportunities for adult artists and lifelong learners. “The arts classes we offer allow adults to explore new arts areas or brush up on their existing talents,” says Leslie Donaldson, director of Interlochen College of Creative Arts. “We have classes in creative writing, music, visual arts, theatre and professional development that are designed to enhance existing skills and promote exploration into new creative outlets.”
Tickets for the Interlochen Performing Arts Series are on sale at tickets.interlochen.org. For a complete listing of fall/winter ICCA classes and to register for classes, visit college.interlochen.org.
Performing Arts Series Lineup:
Artists from Interlochen at Kirkbride Hall
Sept. 7, Sept. 28, Oct. 12, Nov. 9
The highly regarded “Artists from Interlochen” series presents musical recitals featuring the talents of Academy faculty as performed at this historic venue.
The Making of a Musical: The Journey That Saved Curious George
The true story of how the mischievous children’s-book monkey, Curious George, helped his creators, Jewish immigrants who fled Paris in 1940. Learn how they escaped Nazi-occupied Europe and brought Curious George safely to America.
A mash-up of dance moves and on-stage lighting ignites the senses.
Interlochen’s signature student performance surrounds the audience in a constant stream of live music, dance, dialog and more.
Broadway’s Next Hit Musical
The world’s only completely improvised, full-blown musical performance!
Juilliard String Quartet
Widely known as “the quintessential American string quartet.”
A Streetcar Named Desire
Tennessee Williams’ classic story of love, lust and a frail woman’s crumbling grip on reality.
Nov. 16-17 and Dec. 1-2
The tale of a girl who meets a boy with a powerful secret, and then must decide whether or not to stay with him … forever.
December 7-9, 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Everyone’s favorite holiday ballet, with all the music, dancing, gorgeous sets and colorful costumes.
Sounds of the Season
Interlochen’s highly-anticipated annual holiday show performed by Interlochen Arts Academy students and faculty.
Calidore String Quartet
One of the finest chamber music ensembles performing today graces the Corson stage.
Interlochen’s annual family-friendly outdoor festival celebrates all things winter with activities, performances and workshops.
The renowned ensemble presents their infectious love of chamber music.
MOMIX, Opus Cactus
Through dance and acrobatics, MOMIX presents a jaw-dropping spectacle designed for every member of the family.
The jazz pianist displays the expressive style that has made him one of the most influential voices in modern jazz.
Steve Reich Festival featuring IAA Percussion Ensemble
The Interlochen Arts Academy Percussion Ensemble plays a variety of complex and energetic pieces by the famed composer.
Steve Reich Festival featuring eighth blackbird and Third Coast Percussion
Two of contemporary music’s most lauded ensembles join in a celebration of composer Steve Reich’s rich and complex music.
Amazing and haunting harmonies bring emotion to soulful folk music.
One of America’s pre-eminent humor writers addresses the human condition, and slices through convention to do it.
Joshua Roman and JACK Quartet
Powerful performances by two of the world’s great contemporary classical artists.
This archetypal Greek tragedy is a political thriller and a psychological whodunit.
Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
The popular Tony Award-winning Best Musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim is a dark and dangerous pleasure.
Fall 2017 Classes Interlochen College of Creative Arts:
Oct. 7 Uketoberfest! Fall Ukulele Event (Hassenger)
Oct. 27–29 Classical Guitar Workshop (DeRoche)
Nov. 3–5 Learn to Read Music: Sight-Reading for Beginners (Hankin)
Nov. 4–5 Songwriting Workshop (Novy)
Nov. 11–12 Learning Music Theory Through the Fretboard (McGovern)
Nov. 18–19 Blues Guitar (Howard)
Oct. 8 Principles of Photography with Monte Nagler (Nagler)
Oct. 8 Painting Techniques in Acrylic and Mixed Media (Kovan)
Oct. 14–15 Sketching in Color Workshop (Tarr)
Oct. 27 Punch Needle Rug Hooking (Mueller)
Oct. 27 Fiber Dyeing for Spinners (Petteys)
Oct. 27–28 Rigid Heddle Weaving Exploration (McRay)
Oct. 28 Fiber Blending Workshop (Wohlscheid)
Oct. 28 Mixed Media Collage Workshop (Hartigan)
Oct. 29 Journal and Sketchbook Workshop (Hartigan)
Nov. 4 Soft Pastel Painting Workshop: Landscape (Tomasek)
Nov. 5 Soft Pastel Workshop: Still Life (Tomasek)
Nov. 8–10 Watercolor Printmaking: Japanese Woodblock (Beeman)
Nov. 10 Woven Wall Hanging Workshop (McRay)
Nov. 10 Beginning Knitting (Peasley)
Nov. 11 Beginning Italic Calligraphy (Darnell)
Nov. 11–12 Introduction to Figure Drawing (Wolff)
Nov. 12 Introduction to Hand Lettering Design (Darnell)
Oct. 14–15 Writing Meaningful Stories in Fiction and Nonfiction (Johnstone)
Oct. 16–17 Poetry Writing Intensive: Short Poems (Spaulding)
Oct. 27–29 Writers, Readers and Story: A Prose Workshop for Work-in-Progress (McNair)
Oct. 29 Journal and Sketchbook (Hartigan)
Oct. 8 Introduction to Acting Shakespeare (Lewis)