OCCC announces eclectic 2016-2017 Performing Arts Series lineup

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OCCC announces eclectic 2016-2017 Performing Arts Series lineup

Oklahoma City – Soulful blues and jazz, a Tony-winning Broadway musical, a journey through the history of rock ‘n’ roll, avant garde dance and an acting legend’s one-man show—just a sampling of what awaits patrons when Oklahoma City Community College (OCCC) rolls out the 2016-2017 Performing Arts Series (PAS). This year’s diverse mix of dance, theater, music and performance has something that will appeal to audiences of all ages.

The season will open with returning favorite Polly Gibbons with the Oklahoma City Jazz Orchestra Sept. 13 at 7:30 p.m. Gibbons stands out for her warm, rich, soulful vocals and innate blues sensibility. It will be an evening of blues and big band favorites.

Broadway musical enthusiasts will approve of the 2016 National Broadway Tour of “Once: The Musical” hitting the Visual and Performing Arts Center (VPAC) stage Oct. 4 at 7 p.m. This original Broadway musical features an ensemble of actor/musicians who play their own instruments onstage. The 2012 Tony Award-winning musical tells the enchanting tale of a Dublin street musician and a beautiful young woman that takes him on an unforgettable journey about discovering dreams and the power of music. This hit musical is based on the critically acclaimed 2007 film of the same name.

Fans of classic rock ‘n’ roll will jump at the opportunity to see “THE HIT MEN: Legendary Performers with Frankie Valli, Carole King, Cat Stevens & more!” Oct. 21 at 8 p.m. The show takes an amazing look back through rock ‘n’ roll history featuring former members of these mega-star acts performing your favorite songs.

A man of many talents, Emmy and Golden Globe nominee Ben Vereen performs his show “Steppin’ Out with Ben Vereen” Nov. 18 at 8 p.m. Not only does the one-man show usher in the magic of Broadway, Vereen pays tribute to greats such as Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis, Jr. Audiences should expect an evening full of song and dance, stories of Vereen’s life, and a full dose of humor.

The Koresh Dance Company, with its engaging performance and technically superb dancers, will take the stage Jan. 24 at 7:30 p.m. Founded in 1991 by Israeli-born choreographer and artistic director Roni Koresh, the Koresh Dance Company strives to provide innovative and emotional dance performances that break through the boundaries of traditional choreography.

Holding the record as the longest running solo play in Broadway history, “Defending the Caveman” will have the audience roaring with laughter during three performances Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. and Feb. 11 at 1:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. This hilariously insightful play about the ways men and women relate might be the perfect, unforgettable Valentine’s Day celebration.

Audiences will take a visual journey and high-energy ride of inspiration, creativity and engagement during Artrageous’ “Art & Music Gone Wild” March 21 at 7:30 p.m. Witness an artist painting a masterpiece live accompanied by captivating vocals, intricate choreography and exciting music.

To conclude the series, “Opus Cactus,” performed by the MOMIX Dance Company, will explore the mystery and hidden secrets of the American Southwest desert April 11 at 7:30 p.m. By an illusionistic style of dance creating dynamic images of cactuses, slithering lizards and fire dancers, the performance is a spectacular blend of of physical theatre, circus, athleticism and comedy.

“OCCC is committed to bringing quality shows at an affordable price point to the people of Oklahoma City,” said Vice President for Community and Workforce Development Lemuel Bardeguez. “The theater experience should be available to everyone.”

In addition to this year’s lineup, two additional performances will return to the OCCC venue. The Capitol Steps, a satirical comedy group comprised of former Capitol Hill staffers and others, present “What to Expect When You’re Electing” July 16, 2016, at 8 p.m. This fall, The Texas Tenors will offer an encore of their sold out 2015 performance of country, classical and Broadway favorites on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.

Season subscriptions are available now for purchase and offer the best prices at $280 and $240 for all eight-performances, a 20 percent discount off the single ticket price. The Pick 5 and Pick 3 packages are available for a 15 percent and 10 percent discount, respectively. Season subscriptions and packages are now available for purchase at tickets.occc.edu or by phone at (405) 682-7579. Individual ticket prices range from $15-$75 and are available for purchase July 1.

All performances will take place in the college’s Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater located on the OCCC campus. For more information, contact the OCCC Cultural Programs box office at (405) 682-7579 or visit www.occc.edu/pas.

OCCC enrolls more than 20,000 students and has more than 90,000 participants in its various community programs annually. The college is currently the largest adult basic education provider in the state. OCCC offers a full range of associate degree programs that prepare students to transfer to baccalaureate institutions while other degree and certificate programs prepare students for immediate employment. At OCCC, students receive a quality education with small class sizes, dedicated professors and leadership opportunities. Students can choose from more than 80 major fields of study and participate in any of the 40+ clubs and organizations. For more information about OCCC, visit www.occc.edu.

– (published July 18, 2016)

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