Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University Announces 2011-12 Season

Brett Batterson, executive director of the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University (ATRU, 50 E. Congress Parkway, Chicago, IL 60605), proudly announces the Auditorium Theatre's 2011-2012 season. As the premier performance venue in Chicago with more than 120 years of illustrious history, today the Auditorium Theatre continues to usher in new challenges and new voices while also remaining dedicated to providing the highest quality artistic experiences to its audiences. The Auditorium Theatre's 2011-2012 season provides world-renowned dance performances and music programming that showcases the diversity and complexity of the local, regional and international creative landscapes. Subscriptions are now on sale, available by calling (312) 431-2357. Visit www.auditoriumtheatre.org for more information.

"I am tremendously proud of the vibrant and diverse range of programming coming to Chicago for the Auditorium Theatre's 2011-2012 season," said Batterson. "From families bringing their children to the theater for the first time for our Family Series, to dance aficionados that appreciate a wide spectrum of genres, to affordable student matinees, there are numerous options for everyone to enjoy. I'm also particularly excited that earlier this year, American Ballet Theatre signed a six year agreement with the Auditorium Theatre to return for three engagements as a cornerstone of our renowned dance series."

The Auditorium Theatre's 2011-2012 season opens Sept. 17 with "Hallelujah Broadway," a showcase of the most uplifting classic songs that have inspired millions of theatergoers, performed by three renowned soloists. ATRU's popular "On Stage With..." cabaret series (featuring on stage audience seating) returns in 2011 with an up-close-and-personal performance by renowned singer-songwriter Susan Werner on Sept. 24. Next up is DRUMLINE LIVE Oct. 29 and 30, a show-stopping attraction featuring explosive energy and an eclectic mix of sounds that was created by the music team behind 20th Century Fox's hit movie. Rasta Thomas' BAD BOYS of DANCE showcases talent and versatility with athletic leaps, dazzling spins and appealing personal charisma, when they perform Nov. 5 and 6. AXIS Dance Company, an innovative ensemble featuring performers with and without physical disabilities, asks the audience to leave their preconceptions about dance at the door Nov. 19 and 20. The world-renowned Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra with Rockapella rings in the holiday season on Nov. 30. Single tickets for ATRU's fall shows go on sale July 11.

"Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah," the joyful, exuberant and all-American version of Handel's beloved oratorio, returns to the Auditorium for the seventh year in celebration of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday with performances Jan. 14 and 15, 2012. ATRU's dance series continues Mar. 17 and 18 with Israel's Batsheva Dance Company, embraced as one of the most exciting contemporary dance companies in the world and under the artistic direction of Ohad Naharin. A perfect fusion of music, movement and drama takes ATRU's stage Mar. 22 - 25 with American Ballet Theatre in "Giselle," the quintessential romantic ballet epitomizing the transcendent power of love and forgiveness. Rounding out this stellar season of dance is Chicago favorite Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, performing April 11-15 as the company celebrates its first season under Artistic Director Robert Battle.

Subscriptions for the Auditorium Theatre's 2011-2012 season and discounted tickets for groups of 10 or more are now on sale. A flexible subscription package is available that offers savings of 10% off regular ticket prices with the purchase of two shows; 15% off of three shows; 20% off of four shows or 25% off of five or more shows in the season.

ATRU's popular Family Series Subscription allows patrons to receive a free child's subscription with the purchase of any full-price adult subscription package. Pick at least 2 series options including DRUMLINE LIVE (Sunday, Oct. 30 at 3 p.m.), AXIS Dance Company (Sunday, Nov. 20 at 2 p.m.), "Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah" (Sunday, Jan. 15 at 3 p.m.) or Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (Saturday, April 14 at 2 p.m.).

For more information or to purchase a subscription or group tickets call (312) 431-2357 or visit auditoriumtheatre.org. The Auditorium Theatre is giving away a free five-show season subscription (two tickets per show) to a randomly selected winner. One additional winner will be chosen to receive two tickets to any show in ATRU's subscription season. Entry is available through May 7 on Facebook (http://facebook.com/auditoriumtheatre) or via links on the Auditorium Theatre's website or blog ( http://auditoriumtheatre.org / http://auditoriumtheatre.blogspot.com ).

THE AUDITORIUM THEATRE'S 2011-2012 SEASON

"HALLELUJAH BROADWAY"
Saturday, Sept. 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $72

"Hallelujah Broadway" showcases the emotional power of some of The Great White Way's most uplifting and powerful songs that have inspired millions of theatergoers. Featuring inspired vocal performances from three featured soloists, including "Too Hot to Handel" tenor Rodrick Dixon and soprano Alfreda Burke plus Anthony Kearns of The Irish Tenors, the show is a musical extravaganza performed with a 32-piece orchestra that will gladden hearts and give audiences something to cheer about.

ON STAGE WITH...SUSAN WERNER
Saturday, Sept. 24 at 8 p.m.
Tickets: $50 - $75

This intimate concert offers the audience the opportunity to sit on the stage of the Auditorium Theatre while enjoying songs spanning singer-songwriter Susan Werner's career, including her latest blues and roots-oriented album "Kicking the Beehive." Werner's soulful honesty, wit and rowdiness will be on display in this up-close-and-personal cabaret performance. National Public Radio calls Werner "the empress of the unexpected." This show is only available as an add-on to the Auditorium Theatre's subscription series.

DRUMLINE LIVE
Saturday, Oct. 29 at 8 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 30 at 3 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $72

DRUMLINE LIVE is a show-stopping spectacle created by the music team behind 20th Century Fox's hit movie "Drumline," that features a versatile group of musicians and dancers who bring an explosive energy and athleticism to an eclectic mix of sounds. Equally at home with the hottest contemporary hip hop, R&B, classic Motown and great brass tradition, DRUMLINE LIVE brings show-style marching bands to the theatrical stage.

RASTA THOMAS' BAD BOYS OF DANCE
Saturday, Nov. 5 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 6 at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $72

Founded in 2007 by Rasta Thomas, BAD BOYS of DANCE debuted at the 75th anniversary season of the world renowned Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival. Today, the company performs more than 150 shows a year from dancing on catwalks at New York City's fashion week to performing at the opening ceremonies of the USA International Ballet Competition.

The show features young male dancers who perform a range of styles from ballet to hip hop, while showcasing athletic jumps, endless turns and endearing individuality.

AXIS DANCE COMPANY
Saturday, Nov. 19 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 20 at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $72

AXIS Dance Company, founded in 1987, is one of the world's most acclaimed and innovative ensembles of performers with and without physical disabilities. AXIS has paved the way for a powerful contemporary physically integrated dance form. Under the Artistic Direction of Judith Smith, for their engagement at ATRU AXIS will perform choreographer Mark Brew's "Full of Words" (2011), "Light Shelter" (2009) by David Dorfman and "Vessel" (2008) by Alex Ketley in collaboration with poet Carol Snow.

BOSTON POPS ESPLANADE ORCHESTRA WITH ROCKAPELLA
Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $32 - $127

Kick off the holiday season with conductor Keith Lockhart, the Boston Pops, and vocal powerhouse Rockapella. For the first time in Chicago, "America's Orchestra" joins America's leading a cappella group for an unforgettable holiday show. The show features unique takes on classic favorites and brand new originals, plus a special visit from Jolly Ole' St. Nick and a time-honored audience sing along.

"TOO HOT TO HANDEL: THE JAZZ GOSPEL MESSIAH"
Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 15 at 3 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $72

Returning for a seventh year, ATRU celebrates the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday with a joyful, exuberant, all-American version of George Frideric Handel's beloved oratorio. With nearly 200 performers on stage, this soulful jazz-gospel interpretation features a cast of Chicago-based soloists: tenor Rodrick Dixon (of Cook, Dixon and Young), soprano Alfreda Burke and alto Karen Marie Richardson, plus pianist Alvin Waddles, bassist Marion Hayden, the 150 voices of the city-wide Too Hot Choir (under the direction of Old St. Pat's Music Director Bill Fraher), a 50-piece symphony orchestra and a jazz ensemble conducted by Suzanne Mallare Acton.

BATSHEVA DANCE COMPANY
Saturday, Mar. 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Mar. 18 at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $90

The critically acclaimed Batsheva Dance Company, under the artistic direction of Ohad Naharin, tours extensively throughout Israel and internationally, focusing on works by Naharin and House Choreographer Sharon Eyal. Contemporary in style, Batsheva Dance Company performs the full-length piece "Max" for their engagement at the Auditorium Theatre, described by San Diego Arts as a piece that "transports and confounds, confuses and elucidates." Recognized by their progressive and distinctive style, The New York Times describes Batsheva's performances as "full of imagery that slips between real life and dance in fleeting flashes."

AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE IN "GISELLE"
Thursday, Mar. 22 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Mar. 23 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Mar. 24 at 2 and 8 p.m.
Sunday, Mar. 25 at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $32 - $127

American Ballet Theatre, recognized as one of the great dance companies in the world, performs "Giselle," the story of a peasant girl who protects her lover after her premature death. The role of Giselle, often described as the Hamlet of the ballet world, requires technical perfection and strong dramatic skill. According to The New York Times, ABT's roster of international ballet stars paired with a live orchestra makes this production "American Ballet Theatre at its best. This production glows with dramatic life and finely nuanced acting that illuminates ABT's virtuoso dancing."

ALVIN AILEY AMERICAN DANCE THEATER
Wednesday, April 11 at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 12 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, April 13 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 14 at 2 and 8 p.m.
Sunday, April 15 at 3 p.m.
Tickets: $30 - $90

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, led by Artistic Director Robert Battle, blends ballet, modern dance, jazz, and African dance techniques. Hailed as America's cultural ambassador to the world and "possibly the most successful modern dance company on the planet" by The New York Times, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater performs new productions plus audience favorites in their new tour.

Auditorium Theatre 2011-2012 Subscriptions & Groups

Subscriptions for the Auditorium Theatre's 2011-2012 season and discounted tickets for groups of 10 or more are now on sale. For more information or to purchase a subscription or group tickets call (312) 431-2357 or visit auditoriumtheatre.org.

2011-2012 season packages available include:

Flex Package - Choose at least two shows from all offerings.* Subscribers receive a 10% discount for two shows, 15% for three shows, 20% for four shows, and 25% for five or more shows.

Family Series - Patrons may choose at least 2 from the following: DRUMLINE LIVE (Sunday, Oct. 30 at 3 p.m.), AXIS Dance Company (Sunday, Nov. 20 at 2 p.m.), "Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah" (Sunday, Jan. 15 at 3 p.m.) or Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (Saturday, April 14 at 2 p.m.).

Student Matinee Series - Available only to school groups of 10 or more: AXIS Dance Company (Friday, Nov. 18 at 11 a.m. / tickets: $10 each), "Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah" (Friday, Jan. 13, 2012 at 11 a.m. / tickets: $10), Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (Thursday, April 12, 2012 at 11 a.m. and Friday, April 13 at 11 a.m. / tickets: $12)

About the Auditorium Theatre's Family Series

ATRU's Family Series is designed specifically to awaken children's interest in live performance and plant the seed for developing an appreciation of the arts. This unique opportunity allows patrons to receive a free children's subscription with the purchase of any full-price adult subscription package. This special offer expires on Friday, Jan. 13, 2012. This year's Family Series encompasses an eclectic mix of dance and music offerings, and includes DRUMLINE LIVE, AXIS Dance Company, "Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah" and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Patrons may choose at least two of the aforementioned shows. Each family performance is followed by a question and answer session with members of the shows' artistic teams. This interactive experience can dramatically change the impact of the performing arts on its viewers, and with the involvement of families it can also empower youth to express themselves.

Sponsorships
The Auditorium Theatre is grateful for the generous support of the Illinois Arts Council, CityArts, American Airlines and the Palmer House Hilton.

About the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University

The Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, located at 50 E. Congress Parkway, is an independent, not-for-profit organization committed to presenting the finest in international, cultural and community programming to Chicago, and to the continued restoration and preservation of the National Historic Landmark Auditorium Theatre. The Auditorium Theatre is generously supported by the Illinois Arts Council, CityArts, American Airlines and the Palmer House Hilton. For more information about programming, volunteer and donor opportunities or theater tours, call (312) 922-2110 or visit auditoriumtheatre.org.

 



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