Major Musical Tours and More Highlight Harris Center's 2016-17 Season

Bringing artists from around the world, and from most every genre, the Harris Center for the Arts at Folsom Lake College will offer upwards of four hundred performances in its 2016/2017 Season.

While the Harris Center is home to many, many kinds of performances, the Center's sixth Season is especially notable for its presentation of the national tours of six major Broadway musicals, including a marvelous reimagining of Pippin that won four 2013 Tony Awards, the musical Once (winner of eight 2012 Tony Awards), the 20th Anniversary Tour of Rent (winner of a Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award for Best Musical), as well as ever-popular shows Fame, Mamma Mia! and Chicago (winner of six Tony Awards and the longest-running musical in Broadway history). "It's one of those special years in which a slew of exceptional Broadway shows hit the road in the same season and the logistics worked out to allow us to bring them to the intimate Harris Center," notes Executive Director Dave Pier. "This is a unique opportunity to see some top rate Broadway productions up close, as never before in the region."

Among other significant presentations by the Harris Center is Handel's Messiah performed by one of the finest interpreters of the piece in the world - The Choir of Trinity Wall Street with the Trinity Baroque Orchestra, Julian Wachner conducting. Also on the lineup is the legendary choreographer Twyla Tharp with her company's 50th Anniversary Retrospective of dance, plus sitar virtuoso Anoushka Shankar, rock great Ian Anderson with Jethro Tull, academy award winner Billy Bob Thornton and his band The Boxmasters. These, and so many more (see below), will come to Folsom in the coming year.

"This season, we'll also welcome back some old friends," notes Pier, "including Jeffrey Siegel and his Keyboard Conversations, country music star Clint Black, the marching band spectacular DrumLine Live and the Russian National Ballet Theatre, each with new shows, but each brandishing the same high quality that brought them to the Harris Center in the first place and warranted an encore visit 'by popular demand.'"

Other presenters besides the Harris Center also offer artistry on one of Harris Center's three stages. "Increasingly, our Community Partners are presenting touring artists of note," says Pier, "with the legendary Mavis Staples, Iris Dement & Loudon Wainwright III, Jake Shimabukuro, Michael Feinstein and many more destined for the Center's Stage One this season."

Tickets for the 2016-17 Season of Performing Arts are currently on sale, and may be purchased online, by phone or in person. The ticket office phone number is 916-608-6888. Complete information about shows, ticket prices, performance times and more is available at

Subscription packages are available, saving patrons 15% off of the price of single tickets for a number of events (e.g., the Fall Broadway Series, Spring Broadway Series). Groups of 15 or more can also get 15% discounts to popular shows. To learn more about the season, patrons are encouraged to sign up on the website to receive the Harris Center's Season Brochure.

Following is an overview of performances coming to the Harris Center this season.

The Big Stage

From Broadway and beyond, these performances are big on dazzle, spectacle and top-notch artistry.

Winner of six Tony Awards, CHICAGO, the longest-running American musical in Broadway history, is coming to Folsom for seven performances August 18 through August 21, 2016. The musical Once tells of a Dublin street musician and a young woman who takes a sudden interest in him. The New York Times notes, "Once uses song & dance in a way I've never experienced in an American musical" (five performances, October 27 through October 29, 2016). FAME - THE MUSICAL began as an Academy Award-winning film about students at the New York High School of the Performing Arts, then became an Emmy-winning TV series and then moved on to the stage as riveting musical theatre (five performances, from January 13 through January 15, 2017).

The Center's Spring Broadway series kicks off with the 20th Anniversary Tour of Rent. Winner of both a Pulitzer Prize and a Tony Award for Best Musical, Rent comes to the capital region - and the intimacy of the Harris Center's Stage One -for five performances February 2 to February 5, 2017. A mother, a daughter, three possible dads and an unforgettable trip down the aisle...MAMMA MIA!, the hit musical based on the songs of ABBA, returns to the Harris Center for five performances April 7 to April 9, 2017 as part of the shows "Farewell Tour." Winner of four 2013 Tony Awards, Pippin will be a high point of the season. "Anyone who's seen this production knows how magical the theater can be. This production melds extraordinary circus acrobatics and magical illusions with 'ordinary' virtues like accomplished acting, singing, and dancing" (Boston Globe). Pippin runs for five performances from June 9 to June 11, 2017.

Other shows from THE BIG STAGE include The Shanghai Acrobats of the People's Republic of China for five performances of their production Shanghai Nights (September 16-18, 2016). The word "legend" is almost too modest in describing Twyla Tharp; she's received a Tony Award, 19 honorary doctorates, a MacArthur Fellowship, among other honors. She brings her 50th Anniversary Tour to Folsom on October 20, 2016 for one performance. Ian Anderson brings Jethro Tull on October 24, 2016. DrumLine Live returns to Folsom with a brand new show (three performances January 19 and 20, 2017). Following in the footsteps of the great John McCormack, "The Five Irish Tenors" fuse Irish wit and boisterous charm with dramatic flair and operatic style; two shows February 28, 2017 and March 1, 2017. LET IT BE - A Celebration of the Music of the Beatles arrives for four performances, March 31 to April 2, 2017.


America's musical heritage is rich - and so very, very broad. Here, blues and jazz, country, soul, rock and pop gather into one essential lineup of performances.

"A future Country Music Hall of Famer" (Los Angeles Times), Clint Black returns for three performances (October 13-15, 2016). Billy Bob Thornton, the Academy Award winner, performs with his American roots-rock band, The Boxmasters, in two concerts on September 14 & 15, 2016. Mavis Staples is living, breathing history, having continuously crossed musical genres like no one since Ray Charles, and will be presented in concert by Carrera Productions on October 1, 2016.

Rhapsody & Rhythm: The Gershwin Concert Experience, features the music of George and Ira Gershwin together with special family stories, rare home videos and wonderful family photos woven into a concert that tells their story (Jan 8, 2017). The Piano Men - a tribute to Elton John & Billy Joel - arrives for two performances March 8 & 9, 2017. Mark Hummel's Blues Harmonica Blowout an annual tradition at the Center, returns celebrating "blue jazz" with Corky Siegel, Howard Levy, Duke Robillard and Jason Ricci, (January 21, 2017).

"Marc Cohn is one of the most soulful, talented artists I know," says Bonnie Raitt. Carrera Productions presents him April 30, 2017, as well as four-time Grammy-winning guitarist Larry Carlton (January 27, 2017), the Cherry Poppin' Daddies in a Salute to the Music of the Rat Pack (September 10, 2016), and Michael Doucet, Tom Rigney and Flambeau in a special Cajun Night! (November 9, 2016).

SBL Entertainment will present country music star Marty Stuart on Oct 5, 2016, as well as Grammy Award-winning Riders In The Sky (September 23, 2016); Iris Dement & Loudon Wainwright III (September 25, 2016); Michael Feinstein performing The Great American Songbook on November 13, 2016; and nine-time Grammy Award-winner Asleep At The Wheel with special guest Hot Club of Cowtown on November 16, 2016.

Regional favorite the Folsom Lake Community Concert Association will present Birth of the Beat following the "routes" of American Music, from New York City to Hollywood, on March 12, 2017; as well as master illusionist Adam Trent (May 28, 2017); Papa Doo Run Run (August 28, 2016); "A faithful tribute to Barry Manilow" by Jim Witter (October 23, 2016); and Melinda Doolittle who became a household name on Season Six of American Idol (January 22, 2017).

Rounding out the Harris Center's Americana performances, the 1940s big band theatrical swing era revue In The Mood returns to Folsom for four performances September 1 to 3, 2016. Placer Pops Chorale presents That's Entertainment on May 21, 2016. Voices of California is joined by the internationally renowned a cappella quartets Instant Classic and GQ on May 20, 2017 for two shows. Gary Vecchiarelli Productions presents 1940's Battle of the Big Bands (Oct 2, 2016) and Theatre Ventures International offers American Legend: A Tribute to Johnny Cash's Life in Song on Aug 13, 2016. The Folsom Lake College Commercial Music Ensemble presents Soul of America (May 10, 2017).

Young At Heart

Performances for the entire family, for the very young and for the young at heart.

Erth's DINOSAUR ZOO LIVETM is "a delightful and educational date with the dinosaurs that provides visual oomph to rival 'The Lion King' " (Chicago Tribune). A large-scale cast of dinosaur puppets from Australia brought to life by sophisticated design, theatrical presentation and puppet mastery. (Two shows October 16, 2016.)

Now in its sixteenth season, El Dorado Musical Theatre is one of the premiere youth theater companies in the Western United States. This season, they'll present numerous performances of Alice In Wonderland (July 8-17, 2016); The Wizard of OZ (November 4 - 20, 2016), Shrek The Musical (February 24 - March 5, 2017), Disney and Cameron Mackintosh's Mary Poppins (April 28 - May 14, 2017), Roald Dahl's Willy Wonka (July 7- July 16, 2017), LES MISERABLES School Edition (July 21 - July 30, 2017), plus their popular group High Voltage performing revues of Broadway and Holiday favorites (September 30, 2016; December 21, 2016; March 26, 2016 and June 21, 2017).

California Theatre Center has repeatedly been recognized as the top professional theatre for young American audiences. This season it presents two performances each of The Sleeping Beauty (October 15, 2016); The Elves and the Shoemaker (December 3, 2016); Rudyard Kipling's Just So Stories (February 18, 2017) and The Ugly Duckling (March 18, 2017). The Lenaea High School 61st Annual Theatre Festival runs from February 10-12, 2017.

Classical Music

Here, the Harris Center celebrates the classical canon - a timeless music, impeccably performed.

The Harris Center is very proud to present Handel's Messiah (December 9, 2016), performed by The Choir of Trinity Wall Street and the Trinity Baroque Orchestra with Julian Wachner, Director. "To experience the full, formidable range of Messiah....let Trinity be your guide...A mode of what is musically and emotionally possible" (New York Times).

The revered Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, a period-instrument orchestra of 44 musicians recognized as Musical America's Ensemble of the Year, will perform Beethoven's Triple Concerto and Symphony No. 6 in F major on October 23, 2016. Direct from Kiev, The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine has been entrusted with the premier performances of works by Prokofiev and Shostakovich and will perform on March 19, 2017. Keyboard Conversations with Jeffrey Siegel returns, with three "concerts with commentary" on September 25, 2016; January 25, 2017 and May 10, 2017.

The Folsom Lake Symphony was founded in 2004 to bring beautiful classical and pops music to the Folsom region. Their offerings this season include RHYTHMIC HEAT, with pianist Natsuki Fukasawa (Oct 22, 2016); HOLIDAY CHEER, with mezzo-soprano Hannah Ludwig and the American River College Concert Choir for two concerts (December 3 and 4, 2016); RUSSIAN ROMANCE with violinist Jessica Linnebach (a founding member of the Zukerman Chamber Players string quintet led by Pinchas Zukerman; February 18, 2017); IT'S ABOUT TIME!, a family concert (March 11, 2017); ORGAN SYMPHONY with organist Elizabeth Forsyth (Aprril 22, 2017) and FESTA ITALIANA with soprano Yelena Dyachek and tenors Eric Margiore and Bradley Wisk (two concerts on June 3 & 4, 2017).

Sacramento Baroque Soloists is dedicated to creating vibrant, engaging performances of music from the 17th to 19th Centuries. Their concerts include two performances each of A Visit to the Sun King (October 15 &16, 2016); A Baroque Christmas (December 3 & 4, 2016); Voice of the Cello (January 21 & 22, 2017); and A London Adventure (March 18 &19, 2017).

Cellist Susan Lamb Cook is joined by chamber music artists from around the country for the VITA Academy's Great Composers Chamber Music Series, with Chamber music of Clara and Robert Schumann and readings by Capitol Public Radio's Donna Apidone (two performances on October 9, 2016); Chamber music of Dvo?ák (two concerts February 19, 2017) and Chamber music of Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky (May 14, 2017).

This year, the Classical Masters Music Festival Gala will feature Franc D'Ambrosio, best known as the Phantom in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Tony Award-winning musical, The Phantom Of The Opera, for which he performed over 2,300 performances of the lead role (Sep 24, 2016).

The Harris Center is the proud home of performances by the Folsom Lake College Music Department. Performances this season include Folsom Lake College Choir (October 18, 2016; December 6, 2016, March 14, 2017 and May 9, 2017) and the Youth Chamber Orchestra (December 10 & 11, 2016).

There are also many classical music recitals at the Harris Center throughout the year, including those presented by the Folsom Piano Academy, Pacific Institute of Music, Bob Allen Music, Wendy Palmer Piano Studio, Music Teachers Association of California Sierra Chapter, Jacalyn R. McNeil Piano Studio, Balazs Rozsa Studio and more. A calendar of recitals is included in the Harris Center's season brochure.

World Arts

The Harris Center brings the whole world closer with these exceptional artists from around the globe.

The Harris Center is proud to present sitar player and composer Anoushka Shankar, who has garnered five Grammy Award nominations (March 29, 2017). International Guitar Night returns with Brian Gore, Italy's Luca Stricagnoli; Brazil's Chrystian Dozza, and India's ground-breaking slide guitarist Debashish Bhattacharya (February 17, 2017). An Irish Hooley also returns to the Harris Center with a new line-up and special St. Patrick's Day celebration (March 17, 2017).

Celebrating the culture of Hawaii, SBL Entertainment will present virtuoso ukulele player Jake Shimabukuro (December 7, 2016). The Harris Center will present Masters of Hawaiian Music featuring George Kahumoku Nathan Aweau & Kawika Kahiapo (March 10, 2017) and the acclaimed hula Dance Company H?lau o Kekuhi (October 9, 2016). Local hula dancers perform in Ho`ike 2016 on August 6, 2016.

The Sacramento Guitar Society presents Duo Deloro Flamenco December 15, 2016 and the Festival of Four March 25, 2017. Image Punch Entertainment presents An Evening with the Mehmet Polat Trio (September 3, 2016). Calidanza Dance Company presents Mi Mexico (Sept 11, 2016). The Folsom Lake College World Music Ensemble presents PANGAEA, A Global Music Gathering on November 30, 2016.

Home for the Holidays

The Harris Center is the perfect venue for celebrating the holidays - intimate, accessible, world-class.

As noted previously, The Choir of Trinity Wall Street and Trinity Baroque Orchestra will perform Handel's Messiah (December 9, 2016). As seen on PBS - and on Stage One of the Harris Center, where the show has become an established part of the holiday season in Folsom - An Irish Christmas returns for three performances (November 25 & 26, 2016). SBL Presents will present the Windham Hill Winter Solstice Tour (December 22, 2016). Pamela Hayes Classical Ballet Theatre will perform The Nutcracker with Maestro Peter Jaffe and members of the Folsom Lake Symphony for six performances December 15 - 18, 2016. Other holiday presentations by community partner organizations of the Harris Center include Ballet Folklórico de Sacramento's rendition of Posada Navideña, with twenty-five dancers and musicians taking the audience on a whirlwind journey through the regions of Mexico (December 23, 2016); and Voices of California (December 3, 2016), Sacramento Master Singers (December 11, 2016), and Placer Pops Chorale (December 10 &11, 2016).


Dedicated to the joy of physical movement, celebrated in its many forms.

As mentioned above, Twyla Tharp Dance brings its 50th Anniversary Tour to Stage One (October 20, 2016). The Russian National Ballet Theatre returns with its production of The Sleeping Beauty (February 8, 2017) plus Les Sylphides and Carmen (February 9, 2017). Sacramento Ballet presents Modern Masters: The Four Temperaments + The Seven Deadly Sins for four concerts June 16 - 18, 2017). Pamela Hayes Classical Ballet Theatre presents Swan Lake Act 2 & Divertissement July 23 and 24, 2016. CORE Contemporary Dance presents two performances of The Doorway (October 7& 8, 2016) and an additional spring show (March 24 & 25, 2017 - title to be announced). Maliko Dance Academy presents a Dance Showcase (April 1, 2017). El Dorado Dance Academy offers their annual Summer Concert PORTRAITS (June 24, 2017) and Folsom Lake College's own MOSIAC Dance Company will perform December 1, 2016 and May 4, 2017.

World of Ideas

A series that incorporates film, lectures, even multi-media art.

The Spiritual Center for Positive Living presents Marianne Deborah Williamson

Miraculous Thinking (October 26, 2016). Northern California's My Hero Productions premieres the filmMAMABOY on September 3, 2016.

The Play's The Thing

From serious drama to slapstick comedy, a quality series dedicated to theatrical presentations.

MENOPAUSE THE MUSICAL returns to Stage One for four shows (August 25 to 27, 2016). "You'll love it . . . It's hilarious!!" (Joy Behar - The View).

Folsom Lake College's Falcon's Eye Theatre offers You Can't Take It With You for numerous performances Nov 4-20, 2016 and Cyrano from April 28 to May 14, 2017.

The Harris Center for the Arts at Folsom Lake College brings the community together to share in cultural experiences featuring the work of artists from throughout the region and around the world. Built and operated by the Los Rios Community College District, the $50 million, state-of-the-art regional performing arts center boasts three intimate venues with outstanding acoustics, an art gallery, a recording studio, elegant teaching spaces, plenty of safe parking and all the other amenities of a world-class performing arts venue. Having just celebrated its fifth anniversary, the Center has already hosted over 1500 events attracting audiences of over three quarter million.

Tickets are available online at or from the Harris Center Ticket Office at 916-608-6888from noon to 6 pm, Monday through Saturday, and two hours before show times. The Harris Center for the Arts is located on the campus of Folsom Lake College. The campus address is 10 College Parkway, Folsom, CA 95630.

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