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The Carpenter Center Announces 2021-2022 Season



The Carpenter Center Announces 2021-2022 Season

The Richard and Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center has unveiled their 2021-22 season featuring a captivating collection of music, dance, comedy, and speakers. Located on the campus of California State University, Long Beach, the Carpenter Center launches its 26th anniversary season on Monday, September 20, 2021.

"With the reopening of the Carpenter Center, we're thrilled to once again share the magic and energy of live performance with our arts community," says Executive Director Megan Kline Crockett. "We've invited back some of our favorite performers along with exceptional artists new to our stage who embody our commitment to celebrate the joy, wonder, and diversity of the performing arts."

Find all the upcoming events from the new season below, along with artist links and date information. Artist information is also available at

Comedy and Speakers

Comedian Paula Poundstone returns for a laugh-out-loud evening of brilliantly spontaneous humor delivered with her legendary wit. When she isn't on the panel of the #1 NPR show "Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me!," Paula Poundstone uncovers the hilarious angle of almost any subject, delivering her wisdom and humor with the smarts that make every performance feel unique. *** Author Anne Lamott lifts, comforts, and inspires-all while keeping us laughing-in an evening of generous wisdom. Utterly disarming, Anne Lamott is known for addressing complex subjects with humor and ruthless honesty. Always forthright, she is "a writer who has perfected the art of saying the unsayable." (The New York Times)

· An Evening with Paula Poundstone
Saturday, December 11, 2021 at 8 p.m.

· An Evening with Anne Lamott
Saturday, April 23, 2022 at 8 p.m.


Three singular artists are featured in this season's intimate cabaret performances, where patrons sit at tables on the main stage. Vocal superstar Storm Large leads with her sultry and subversive renditions of jazz standards, Broadway showstoppers, and classic anthems, illuminating them in a gorgeous new hue. *** Broadway star David Burnham returns to celebrate the stories and music of superstar Tom Jones, including Burnham's unique renditions of Tom Jones's chart-toppers, from "It's Not Unusual" to "What's New Pussycat." *** Allan Harris and his quartet share soul-drenched songs from his latest album, Kate's Soulfood as he pays homage to the richness of Harlem, the neighborhood where he was raised and the source of inspiration for this deeply personal collection of songs.

· Storm Large
Wednesday/Thursday, November 10 & November 11, 2021

· Celebrating Tom Jones starring David Burnham
Wednesday/Thursday, January 19 & January 20, 2022

· Allan Harris Kate's Soulfood
Wednesday/Thursday, March 2 & March 3, 2022

All Cabaret performances start at 7 p.m.


The 2021-2022 dance performances continue the Carpenter Center's reputation as a leading presenter of dance in Southern California. This season includes Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo in their seventh appearance on the Center's stage. The all-male dance company's one-of-a-kind combination of ballet satire and spot-on choreography have thrilled dance connoisseurs and delighted audiences for over 40 years. *** Also returning is the celebrated dance company A.I.M by Kyle Abraham performing An Untitled Love, an exultant new ode to the music of Grammy Award-winning R&B legend D'Angelo. A thumping mixtape of a dance, An Untitled Love is sonically rooted in the richness of Soul and R&B music, and celebrates family, community, and love in this evening-length experience by one of today's most in-demand choreographers. *** The internationally acclaimed dancer-illusionists of MOMIX return to the Carpenter Center to conjure the magical world of the White Rabbit, Mad Hatter, and the Queen of Hearts in this stunning reimagining of Lewis Carroll's novel Alice in Wonderland. Featuring the visionary choreography of Artistic Director Moses Pendleton, and filled with visual splendor and startling creative movement, Alice reveals that nothing in MOMIX's world is as it seems.

· Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo
Saturday, January 29, 2022 at 8 p.m.
Sunday, January 30, 2022 at 2 p.m.

· A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham
An Untitled Love

Saturday, February 5, 2022 at 8 p.m.

Saturday, April 30, 2022 at 8 p.m.


The Center's music performances include world-renowned jazz saxophonist Branford Marsalis in an evening of dazzling virtuosity, heartfelt ballads, and telepathic improvisations with his famed quartet. Since its inception in 1986, the Grammy Award- winning quartet has been revered for its kaleidoscopic range, making it the standard to which other ensembles are measured. *** Returning to the Center's stage with their inspired zaniness and captivating skill are Igudesman & Joo. In this afternoon's musical choose-your-own adventure, the classical music duo turn a traditional concert on its head, bringing their inventive energy to an inside-out, topsy-turvy show where every song is an encore.

· An Evening with Branford Marsalis
Saturday, November 6, 2021 at 8 p.m.

· Igudesman & Joo
Play it Again

Sunday, May 15, 2022 at 2 p.m.

Holiday Events

Damien Sneed and a stellar cast of vocalists and musicians ring in the holidays with original arrangements of "Joy to the World," Handel's Messiah, "This Christmas," and many other gospel, jazz, and classical favorites. Damien Sneed has worked with legends Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, and Diana Ross, and made his Carpenter Center debut with We Shall Overcome: A Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during the 2018-2019 season. *** Continuing a Carpenter Center holiday tradition is jazz pianist and composer David Benoit as he presents the timeless Vince Guaraldi holiday tunes from the TV classic "A Charlie Brown Christmas," alongside jazz favorites and originals. After celebrating the music of Vince Guaraldi last year in a virtual concert, David Benoit returns to the Carpenter Center stage to continue the holiday tradition, joined this year by vocalist Courtney Fortune, named "America's next big jazz singer" by Genlux Magazine.

· Damien Sneed's Joy to the World: A Christmas Musical Journey

Sunday, December 12, 2021 at 2 p.m.

· David Benoit Christmas Tribute to Charlie Brown featuring Courtney Fortune
Saturday, December 18, 2021 at 8 p.m.

Ticket Information

Tickets to fall events will be available for purchase online at on September 20, 2021, with phone and in-person ticket purchasing beginning October 1. Tickets to spring 2022 shows will be available November 1. All programs, performers, prices, dates and times are subject to change. Presentations are made possible in part by Season Media Partner KPCC 89.3-FM.

For additional ticketing information, contact the Arts Ticket Office at (562) 985-7000. The box office is located on the California State University, Long Beach campus at 6200 E. Atherton St. Long Beach, CA 90815. The box office will be open Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. beginning October 1.

Attendance Information

For the health and safety of audiences, artists, crew, and volunteers, patrons will need to be fully vaccinated to attend a performance. For more information, including testing accommodations and more, visit

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