BACK TO THE FUTURE, ENCANTO And More Headline Lied Center 35th Anniversary 2024-2025 Season

Highlights include Itzhak Perlman, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Step Afrika! and much more!

By: May. 08, 2024
BACK TO THE FUTURE, ENCANTO And More Headline Lied Center 35th Anniversary 2024-2025 Season
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The Lied Center's 2024-2025 season will feature more than 35 events including top artists and ensembles from around the world in dance, classical music, jazz, musical theater, comedy, family, illusion, and more.  

Lied Center Executive Director Bill Stephan says, “Featuring exceptional evenings of music, theater, dance, comedy, illusion, and much more, the thrilling 35th anniversary season at the Lied is a celebration for all of Nebraska! From the stunning power of world-renowned ensembles like the Czech National Symphony Orchestra and Parsons Dance to the return of Lied audience favorites including Itzhak Perlman and Preservation Hall Jazz Band, the Nebraska premiere of Back to the Future: The Musical to the world-premiere play A House Divided featuring the Lincoln White House, family favorites like Disney's The Little Mermaid and Encanto: The Live Singalong Concert, popular hits including the ABBA celebration Arrival From Sweeden and the premiere tour of Mystic Pizza the Musical, and much more, there truly is something for everyone!” 

Create Your Own Season packages go on sale to the public at 11am on Tuesday, May 14 at liedcenter.org, by phone at (402) 472-4747, and in-person at the Lied Center box office. To become a subscriber, patrons can select any five or more shows in the season and receive a discount of 20% off the entire order. 

THE 2024-2025 LIED CENTER SEASON

Aaron Watson

September 6, 2024 at 7:30pm

For over 20 years, Aaron Watson has traveled the land as country music's ultimate underdog troubadour – a truly independent artist with the spirit of the American frontier in his veins. Praised by People.com for creating “music filled with light and joy … pride for the country he calls home,” Watson has reached Billboard's Top Ten Country Album Chart five times and is recognized in the Country Music Hall of Fame as the first independent male country artist to debut an album at No. 1 on the Billboard Country chart, known for songs including ”Outta Style.” “That Look.” “July in Cheyenne.”, “Freight Train,” and “Kiss That Girl Goodbye.”

A House Divided

September 17-22, 2024

6 Performances in the Johnny Carson Theater

The Lied Center presents the world premiere production of A House Divided, a new play by Christina Kirk. Based on real events, this compelling work examines the distressing choices faced by Abraham Lincoln that threatened to unravel his family and the country during a week in 1863 when Mary Todd Lincoln's half-sister, Emilie Todd Helm, visits the White House. Helm, a fiercely loyal Confederate, refuses to pledge allegiance to the Union when trying to cross the border to return to Kentucky after her Confederate husband's death in battle. Unsure of what else to do, Lincoln suggests the soldiers send her to the White House.

Dear Evan Hansen

September 27-29, 2024

5 Performances

Meet Evan Hansen, a high school student who always feels like he's on the outside looking in. After writing a letter to himself that was never meant to be seen, Evan becomes entangled in a lie that was never meant to be told and a life he never dreamt could be his. As a result, Evan finally gets what so many of us are searching for—the chance to finally fit in.

Packed with some of the most popular musical theatre songs from the last decade including “You Will Be Found,” “Waving Through A Window” and “For Forever,” DEAR EVAN HANSEN features an uplifting score by the Tony , Grammy, and Oscar winning team behind The Greatest Showman and La La Land, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and a book by Tony Award winner Steven Levenson.

Step Afrika! The Migration

October 3, 2024 at 7:30pm

After thrilling Lied Center audiences in 2021, Step Afrika! returns with lightning-fast footwork, percussive chants, and incredible synchronicity, creating a heart-pounding experience and celebrating the African American tradition of stepping. Based on Jacob Lawrence's iconic paintings The Migration Series that chart the story of African American migrants moving from the south to the north in the early 1900s, Step Afrika's powerful new work uses the images and motifs of visual art to tell the migration story through body percussion and dance.

Back to the Future: The Musical

October 8-13, 2024

8 Performances

Great Scott! Back to the Future, the beloved, cinematic classic is now a Broadway musical with its destination set for Lincoln, Nebraska in 2024.

Winner of the 2022 Olivier Award for Best New Musical, four WhatsOnStage Awards, including Best New Musical, and the Broadway World Award for Best New Musical, Back to the Future: The Musical is adapted for the stage by the iconic film's creators Bob Gale (Back to the Future trilogy) and Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump) and directed by the Tony Award-winner John Rando with original music by multi-Grammy winners Alan Silvestri (Avengers: Endgame) and Glen Ballard (Michael Jackson's “Man in the Mirror”), alongside hit songs from the movie including “The Power of Love,” “Johnny B. Goode,” “Earth Angel,” and “Back in Time.”

When Marty McFly finds himself transported back to 1955 in a time machine built by the eccentric scientist Doc Brown, he accidentally changes the course of history. Now he's in a race against time to fix the present, escape the past, and send himself... back to the future. When Back to the Future hits 88mph, it'll change musical theatre history forever.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band

October 18, 2024 at 7:30pm

The Preservation Hall Jazz Band has held the torch of New Orleans music aloft for more than 60 years and marches Crescent City tradition forward in their brilliant stage performances. Returning to the Lied for the first time since 2006, the band has spread its hometown's iconic sound to festival stages from Coachella to Newport, performing among peers and legends, such as Stevie Wonder, Elvis Costello, and the Grateful Dead, as well as modern giants, such as Beck, The Foo Fighters, My Morning Jacket, and the Black Keys. 

Carson Tonight

October 23, 2024 at 7:30pm

Relive the magic and laughter of Johnny Carson's Tonight Show on Johnny's 99thh Birthday with the talented variety artists and personalities who were frequently featured as in-studio guests during his extraordinary 30-year late-night run. Carson Entertainment Group and the Lied Center present this one-time special event, hosted by comedian Pat Hazell, plus stage performances by master magician Lance Burton, comedian Cathy Ladman, ventriloquist Jay Johnson, America's Got Talent Veterans - The Passing Zone jugglers Jon Wee & Owen Morse, and more surprise guests accompanied live by the UNL Jazz Orchestra conducted by Gregory Simon playing from the original music charts of The Tonight Show Orchestra.

Capitol Fools

October 25, 2024 at 7:30pm

Capitol Fools is the new generation of the beloved Capitol Steps, D.C.'s premier political satire show! Featuring performers and the co-creator from Capitol Steps, they put the ‘Mock in Democracy' and specialize in bipartisan spoofery. With breakneck costume changes, over-the-top impressions, and all-new song parodies reflecting the day's news, join us for the unveiling of the next political movement in comedy sweeping the country – Capitol Fools.

Encanto: The Sing-Along Film Concert

October 30, 2024 at 7:00pm

Walt Disney Animation Studios' Academy Award-winning film Encanto comes to life like never before! Experience the entire feature-length film on the Lied Center's huge screen with a live band performing the full score. Encanto tells the tale of the Madrigals, an extraordinary family living in a magical house in the mountains of Colombia. The beloved soundtrack features original songs by Tony- and GRAMMY-winning songwriter/composer Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton, Moana), including We Don't Talk About Bruno, Surface Pressure, and the Academy Award-nominated Dos Oruguitas.

Yunchan Lim, Piano

November 1, 2024 at 7:30pm

At just 18 years old, Yunchan Lim recently became the youngest pianist ever to win the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. He has become one of the most sought-after classical performers in the world, regularly selling out major venues with performances that showcase a “magical ability” and a “natural, instinctive quality” (La Scena). Van Cliburn jury chair – the illustrious Marin Alsop – praised Lim as “that rare artist who brings profound musicality and prodigious technique organically together.” Don't miss Lim's long-anticipated Lied Center debut!

Metro Jazz Quintet

November 8 & 9, 2024 at 7:30pm: Broadway & Hollywood: Jazz classics from the Broadway stage and big screen!

January 24 & 25, 2025 at 7:30pm: Songs of Love: Love songs from the rich tradition of jazz!

April 11 & 12, 2025 at 7:30pm: Bebop: The music of Charlie Parker, Dizzie Gillespie, Miles Davis, and more!

Lied Center Commons

Following sold-out 2023-24 Season performances, experience jazz “club style” with the Metro Jazz Quintet in the intimate setting of the Lied Commons. This new quintet includes many of the finest jazz musicians in Nebraska performing a wide variety of your favorite legendary jazz composers.

The Lied Commons club scene will feature table and theater seating, a candlelight atmosphere, and cocktails available for purchase throughout the evening.

Disney's The Little Mermaid

November 12-17, 2024

8 Performances

In a magical kingdom beneath the sea, the beautiful young mermaid Ariel longs to leave her ocean home to live in the world above. Based on one of Hans Christian Andersen's most beloved stories and the classic animated film, Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID is a hauntingly beautiful love story for the ages.

With music by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken, this fishy-fable will capture your heart with its irresistible songs including “Under the Sea,” “Kiss the Girl,” and “Part of Your World.” Produced by McCoy Rigby Entertainment, this spectacular new production will enchant the whole family!

A Charlie Brown Christmas: Live on Stage

December 2, 2024 at 7:30pm

This is one present the whole family will love! Your favorite Peanuts characters come to life in this all-new stage adaptation of Charles M. Schulz's classic Emmy and Peabody Award-winning animated television special – all set to Vince Guaraldi's unforgettable music. Join Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Linus, and the whole gang as they put on their own Christmas play and ultimately discover the true meaning of Christmas. A Charlie Brown Christmas: Live on Stage is the perfect holiday treat!

The Illusionists: Magic of the Holidays

December 17, 2024 at 7:30pm

Celebrate the holidays with the entire family at The Illusionists - Magic of the Holidays, a mind-blowing spectacle featuring the jaw-dropping talents of the most incredible illusionists on earth.

Direct from Broadway, the world's best-selling magic show is coming to Lincoln! The Illusionists continue to dazzle audiences of all ages with a powerful mix of the most outrageous and astonishing acts ever seen on stage, packed with thrilling and sophisticated magic of unprecedented proportions.

The Midtown Men: Holiday Hits

December 21, 2024 at 7:30pm

Celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with The Midtown Men! Reuniting stars of the original cast of Broadway's smash hit Jersey Boys, this celebrated vocal group returns to the Lied Center to ring in the Christmas season with iconic Yuletide classics, such as “Winter Wonderland,” “Let It Snow,” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” Known for tight harmonies and signature renditions of the music from Jersey Boys and the greatest rock and roll hits of the 1960s, the group delivers iconic music of The Beatles, The Temptations, The Four Seasons, and more.

Goodnight Moon & The Runaway Bunny

January 14, 2025 at 6:30pm

Featuring charming puppetry sure to delight young audiences, Mermaid Theatre of Novia Scotia brings two of the most beloved children's books in history to life on stage. Goodnight Moon is a celebration of familiar nighttime rituals, while The Runaway Bunny's pretend tale of leaving home evokes loving reassurance from his mother. Both feature rabbit characters and come alive through soothing rhythms and dream-like imagery that provide young audiences with a sense of security, wonder, and delight.

RENT in Concert

January 18, 2025 at 7:30pm

RENT in Concert, directed by Broadway's Sammi Cannold, is a full symphonic concert evening performed with live vocalists and Lincoln's Symphony Orchestra, celebrating Jonathan Larson's groundbreaking Tony and Pulitzer Prize Award winning musical. Set in the East Village of New York City, Rent is about falling in love, finding your voice, and living for today. Fresh from its debut at the Kennedy Center with a superstar cast featuring multiple Tony Award winners, Lincoln is one of the only cities in the U.S. to welcome this star-studded new concert production!

Syncopated Ladies Live!

January 23, 2025 at 7:30pm

FIERCE FOOTWORK. FEMALE FORCE. Syncopated Ladies is the high-octane, high-impact female tap dance band created by Emmy Award-nominated tap dancer and choreographer Chloe Arnold, protege of Debbie Allen.

Syncopated Ladies' viral videos have amassed over 100 MILLION VIEWS, with reposts from stars, including Janet Jackson and Missy Elliot. Megastar Beyonce shared their work, saying “They Killed It,” then featuring Syncopated Ladies on her homepage and inviting them to perform with her internationally. Syncopated Ladies won the first-ever dance crew battle on FOX's So You Think You Can Dance, have been featured on Good Morning America, and now perform to sold-out audiences nationwide.

Hit Broadway Show: To Be Announced

February 4-16, 2025

16 Performances

The 5th show in our 2024-2025 Glenn Korff Broadway Series package can't be announced until this summer, but we can tell you that it will be only the third show in Lied Center history to run for two full weeks of performances! Following in the Lied Center legacy of The Phantom of the Opera in 2019 and Hamilton in 2023, we can't wait to bring another of the biggest shows currently running on Broadway to Lincoln.

Academy of St. Martin in the Fields

February 19, 2025 at 7:30pm

Renowned for fresh, brilliant interpretations of the world's greatest orchestral music, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields is one of the world's finest chamber orchestras. Founded in 1958 by Sir Neville Marriner, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields has evolved into a musical powerhouse, an orchestra renowned across the world for the sharing of joyful, inspiring performances. The orchestra is joined by Bruce Liu, first prize winner of the 18th Chopin Piano Competition, for Shostakovich's witty and brilliant Piano Concerto No. 1.

123 Andrés 

February 23, 2025 at 4:00pm

Christina and Andrés are 123 Andrés, the GRAMMY- and Latin GRAMMY-winning duo for kids and families known for their interactive, high-energy shows. They bring fresh, original songs that blend Spanish and English, with an eclectic mix of sounds from all corners of Latin America. 123 Andrés packs its show with positive vibes and energetic songs that get the whole family dancing and learning.

Czech National Symphony Orchestra 

February 26, 2025 at 7:300pm

Recognized as one of Europe's first-rank symphonic ensembles, the Czech National Symphony Orchestra takes the Lied Center stage with a breathtaking program. Praised by The New York Times for “brilliance and infectious exuberance,” American pianist Maxim Lando opens with Liszt's virtuosic Piano Concerto No. 1 followed by the Nebraska return of superstar violinist Sandy Cameron performing Barber's Violin Concerto No. 1. The concert concludes with Dvorak's triumphant Symphony No. 9 “From the New World.”

Kerfuffle's The Conductors: A Play for Very Young Children 

February 28- March 1, 2025

3 Performances in the Johnny Carson Theater

All aboard the magic train! Where should we go? Who shall we visit? The conductors are on a search for treasure in this play specifically designed for very young children. Featuring live music and playful audience participation, The Conductors is a silly, joyful, and engaging first theater experience. Join the conductors as they explore community and connection along the railroad lines! Best enjoyed by children under 6 years old and their caregivers, The Conductors runs 45 minutes. Pre-show activities begin 15 minutes before the performance.

Mnozil Brass

March 1, 2025 at 7:30pm

Back by popular demand, one of the world’s top brass ensembles returns to Nebraska celebrating its 30thh anniversary of sensational programs, comedic brilliance, and impeccable playing. Known as the “Monty Python of the music world” and for its massively viral YouTube videos, Austria’s Mnozil Brass seamlessly combines slapstick comedy with extraordinary musical ability. The group has embraced repertoire for all ages: from folk to classical to jazz to pop, all executed with the same fearlessness, immense technical skill, and typical Viennese "schmäh"!

Beetlejuice The Musical 

March 4-9, 2025

8 Performances

He earned his stripes on Broadway… now the ghost-with-the-most is coming to Lincoln, Nebraska. It’s showtime! Based on Tim Burton’s dearly beloved film, this hilarious musical tells the story of Lydia Deetz, a strange and unusual teenager whose whole life changes when she meets a recently deceased couple and a demon with a thing for stripes. With an irreverent book, an astonishing set, and a score that’s out of this Netherworld, BEETLEJUICE is “SCREAMINGLY GOOD FUN!” (Variety). And under its uproarious surface (six feet under, to be exact), it’s a remarkably touching show about family, love, and making the most of every Day-O!

Content warning: Parental discretion advised. Contains strong language, mature subject matter, and a lot of the crazy, inappropriate stuff you would expect from a deranged demon.

Murphy’s Celtic Legacy

March 15, 2025 at 7:30pm

Embark on a mesmerizing journey with Murphy’s Celtic Legacy, an enchanting Irish music and dance extravaganza that captivates audiences worldwide. Delve into the rich lore of the Murphy clan as its saga unfolds against the breathtaking backdrop of Ireland and the boundless expanse of the open sea. Featuring a dynamic fusion of the finest Irish dancers, virtuoso musicians, and an original soundtrack that stirs the soul, this is Irish dance reborn!

Eminent Domain

March 20-30, 2025

8 Performances in the Johnny Carson Theater

Any Nebraska farmer or rancher worth their salt will tell you their connection to the land is equally as strong as their bonds to family, community, and their good name. When Rob McLeod is confronted with a threat underneath his land, he and his entire family discover how fragile and endangered their bonds will become. An award-winning play, written by Nebraska playwright Laura Leninger-Campbell and produced by Angels Theatre Company, Eminent Domain digs beneath the day-to-day struggles facing our family farms. Dig deeper, and the greatest threat to America’s Heartland is revealed: how can this way of life survive without its next generation?

Annie 

March 21-22, 2025

3 Performances

Holding onto hope when times are tough can take an awful lot of determination, and sometimes, an awful lot of determination comes in a surprisingly small package. Little Orphan Annie has reminded generations of theatergoers that sunshine is always right around the corner, and now the best-loved musical of all time is set to return in a new production – just as you remember it and just when we need it most.

Annie, directed by Jenn Thompson, features the iconic book and score, written by Tony Award®-winners Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin. This celebration of family, optimism and the American spirit remains the ultimate cure for all the hard knocks life throws your way.

The Barricade Boys 

March 29, 2025 at 7:30pm

Experience your favorite musicals blended with the greatest pop, rock, and swing numbers from four top performers who have one thing in common: they all performed in the West End, international tour, or movie of the world’s greatest musical – Les Misérables!

Direct from London, hear the music and inspiring stories from The Barricade Boys’ time touring the world and performing on stage in the biggest West End shows, including Wicked, The Phantom of the Opera, and more. They also put their spin on the iconic hits of Queen, Elton John, The Beatles, and The Rolling Stones! Note: Not a performance of or affiliated with the show Les Misérables.

Parsons Dance 

April 5, 2025 at 7:30pm

Exuberant, virtuosic, and sexy barely begins to describe the Parsons Dance experience. Praised for its remarkable athleticism and stunning ensemble work, Parsons Dance delivers exhilarating choreography that leaves audiences absolutely mesmerized. New and celebrated American choreographers take center stage, including Parsons’ own stroboscopic masterpiece, Caught.

The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain

April 9, 2025 at 7:30pm

Witty, quirky, and irreverent – praised by Bowie and Eno, and raved about by The New York Times, this world-renowned group of ukulele superstars performs “an evening of sheer entertainment.” Playful, virtuosic, and wickedly amusing, both fun and actually funny, these eccentric virtuosos return to the Lied with their toe-tapping music, hilarious banter, and sheer superlative entertainment. They are masters of the unexpected known for reimagining folk songs, twisting classical favorites, and uncovering quirky versions of rock covers. Featuring only ukuleles and a menagerie of voices, the group is a global sensation!

Alton Brown: Live! 

Last Bite – The Final Tour

April 15, 2025 at 7:30pm

The famed foodist reflects on his decades in food media, presents several of his favorite culinary mega-hacks, sings some of his funny food songs, and in general offers a culinary variety show the likes of which human eyes have never seen. Brown’s live culinary variety shows have toured to sold-out crowds across the country since 2013, and among his various mantle candy are a pair of James Beard awards and a Peabody.

An Evening with Itzhak Perlman, Violin

April 19, 2025 at 7:30pm

No violinist more beautifully captures and conveys the joy of music than Itzhak Perlman, the undeniable reigning virtuoso of violin. Having performed with every major orchestra and at concert halls around the globe, Perlman was granted a Presidential Medal of Freedom – the nation’s highest civilian honor – by President Obama in 2015, a Kennedy Center Honor in 2003, a National Medal of Arts by President Clinton in 2000, and a Medal of Liberty by President Reagan in 1986. Perlman has been honored with 16 GRAMMY® Awards, four Emmy® Awards, a Kennedy Center Honor, a GRAMMY® Lifetime Achievement Award, and a Genesis Prize. In this extraordinary recital, he is joined by his musical partner of 25 years, pianist Rohan De Silva.

“Perlman’s great gift is to deliver timeless music to his audiences with uncomplicated affection, directness and humanity.” -The Washington Post

Take3

May 4, 2025 at 7:30pm

“Stunning, Superb, Powerful …” says the Los Angeles Times of TAKE3: Where ROCK meets BACH, featuring the music of popular artists, including The Beatles, Billy Joel, Elvis, Neil Diamond, Imagine Dragons, and crowd favorites, “Sweet Home Alabama,” “Hallelujah,” “Game of Thrones.” “Stand by Me,” and “Pirates of the Caribbean.” Featuring musicians trained at the world’s top conservatories, this unique trio of violin, cello, and piano brings together the power and energy of rock music with the sophistication and beauty of classical Bach.

Arrival From Sweden: The Music of Abba

May 22, 2025 at 7:30pm

This is “The closest you will ever get to ABBA!” (Official ABBA Fan Club) ARRIVAL from Sweden has been selling out venues all over the world since 1995 as most successful and authentic ABBA tribute in the world. Hits like “Dancing Queen,” “Mamma Mia,” “Does Your Mother Know,” “Take A Chance,” “The Winner Takes It All,” “Super Trouper,” “Money Money Money,” “Lay All Your Love on Me,” and many more are delivered with such accuracy that it’s hard to believe that it’s not the real ABBA on stage! ARRIVAL from Sweden is the only group that has trusted with a previously unreleased ABBA song directly from Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson of ABBA.

Mystic Pizza

June 14-15, 2025

3 Performances

Based on the beloved 1988 MGM rom-com, Mystic Pizza is a new musical about three working-class girls who navigate the complexities of life, love, and family in a small-town pizza joint. The infectious score features megahits of the ‘80s and ‘90s, from "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" to "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now" and songs originally recorded by Melissa Etheridge, Cyndi Lauper, John Cougar Mellencamp, Debbie Gibson, Wilson Phillips, The Bangles, Belinda Carlisle, Rick Astley, and Bryan Adams, among many others.

About the Lied Center for Performing Arts

The Lied Center is Nebraska’s Home for the Arts. Located at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the Lied presents the world’s most iconic artists and major regional, national and international performances that entertain and inspire audiences. We offer something for everyone, including the best of Broadway, symphony orchestras, dance, music, theater and family programs. Artists at the Lied have ranged from Itzhak Perlman and Wynton Marsalis to the American Ballet Theatre and St. Louis Symphony. The Lied also is committed to educational outreach: Nearly 100% of visiting artists work with students in the days leading up to their performance. Visit us at liedcenter.org




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