Columbia Theatre Season to open Sept. 14

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 Rioult Dancy NY
by: Tonya Lowentritt

DANCING INTO THE SEASON - Southeastern Louisiana University's Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts will present Rioult Dance NY on Nov. 9, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the Columbia Theatre box office, on line at, or by calling 985-543-4371.

HAMMOND – The 2014-15 season of Southeastern Louisiana University's Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts offers something for everyone this year, featuring everything from Shakespeare to modern dance to Motown.

The season opens Sept. 14 with Laurie Rubin, a critically acclaimed opera singer and inspirational speaker who is blind. Later in the season, patrons will be treated to musical performances by Masters of Soul, a celebration of the legendary songs and performers that defined Motown and soul music, and Julie Fowlis, a Gaelic musical artist best known for her work on the soundtrack of the Disney Pixar movie "Brave."

Also on tap are performances by Rioult Dance NY, Aquila Theatre Company presenting Shakespeare's "The Tempest," country and gospel singer Morgan Frazier, and a special screening of "Frankenstein – The Movie Score" (for wind symphonies) by noted American composer and conductor Michael Shapiro accompanied by the Southeastern Wind Symphony.

A compliment to the Columbia Theatre season, Fanfare, the university's annual fall celebration of the arts, humanities and social sciences, will feature more "home-grown" artists than ever before. Fanfare will once again showcase music, theater, lectures, films, children's events, art exhibits and more, highlighting the variety of talent faculty and students have to offer in Fanfare's 29th season.

First on tap is Southeastern Opera/Theatre Workshop's presentation of "Sweeny Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street" Sept. 25 and 26 in the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts at 7:30 p.m.

Set in 19th century England, the production tells the story of Benjamin Barker, also known as Sweeney Todd, who returns to London after 15 years' imprisonment on trumped-up charges. When he finds out that his wife poisoned herself after being raped by the judge who imprisoned him, he vows revenge on the judge and, later, on others as well. He teams up with a pie maker, Mrs. Lovett, and opens a barbershop in which he slits the throats of customers and has them baked into pies.

Also in the theater category and back by popular demand is Missoula Children's Theatre, a traveling theatre group that casts local children in a production, rehearses for one week and stages a full scale performance at the end of the week. The casting is scheduled on Oct. 27, and rehearsals begin that day and continue for the rest of the week. This year's production of the "Pied Piper" is scheduled on Nov. 1 at Amite High School, 403 S. Laurel in Amite. For more information about Missoula Children's Theatre, contact Rowanna Currier or Charlie Vance at 985-748-8761.

The annual Then and Now Lecture Series returns once again with a range of topics, including Louisiana's Russell Long; Tolkien and mythological imagination; the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and the outbreak of World War I; Dr. Who, and the meanings behind Christmas carols.

Also on the Fanfare menu are art exhibits at Southeastern's Contemporary Art Gallery, performances by Southeastern's own Chamber Orchestra and its annual "Spooktacular, the university's own rock band Impaired Faculties, Wind Symphony, and various other music recitals.

The complete Fanfare schedule will be posted and updated regularly at For more information on the Columbia Theatre season, contact the administrative office at 985-543-4366 or visit


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