Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Press Releases

Millikin University's Kirkland Fine Arts Center is pleased to announce its 2015-2016 Performing Arts Series. For over 40 years, Kirkland Fine Arts Center has been the place to be for live performing arts for Decatur and the surrounding area. The tradition continues this coming season with a diverse lineup that is not only family-friendly, but fun for all.

"I am very excited about the upcoming season," said Kirkland Fine Arts Center's Director Jan Traughber. "This season has very unique events that should appeal to not only our established patron base but hopefully attract new patrons as well."

Traughber added, "Working up to the 50th anniversary, the goal is to present some of the community's past favorite events during each of the upcoming seasons. Guests can share their favorite memories through e-mail at kfac@millikin.com, on Facebook, or tweet us @kirklandFAC. Enjoy the magic of the arts at Kirkland and help celebrate the Center's wonderful heritage."

Early-order ticket options are available to all the events. If you purchase tickets for three to five separate events of your choice you receive 10 percent off your order. Purchase any six events or more and receive 15 percent off. Single tickets will go on sale to the public beginning Aug. 24 for all 2015 events. Single tickets for all 2016 events will go on sale to the public beginning Dec. 14.

For further information on purchasing tickets, contact the Kirkland Ticket Office at 217.424.6318 or visit kirklandfinearts.com. The following is the lineup of events for the 2015-2016 season.

Brass Transit
Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $25-$40, School Age $5
brasstransit.com

Does anyone really know what time it is? Brass Transit – Toronto's dynamic, crowd-pleasing, studio-tight Chicago tribute. The band's show includes all the hits from Chicago's golden age, 1969-1976. With world-class horns, a rocking rhythm section and vocals stacked sky high; Brass Transit transports the audience back to the freewheeling days of the 70s. The members' credits include platinum records, Emmy and Juno awards, and performances with Hall-of-Fame rock and soul acts including: The Drifters, Sam & Dave, Aretha Franklin, Ben E. King, The Marvelettes, Frankie Valli, Mary Wilson, Martha Reeves, Little Anthony & The Imperials, Del Shannon and the Mamas & The Papas. With its international audience now numbering in the tens of thousands, Brass Transit has established itself as the world's foremost Chicago experience.

m-pact
Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015 (Homecoming) at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$20, School Age $5
m-pact.com

Imagine the smooth soul of Stevie Wonder, the percussive power of Stomp, the funk and drive of Earth, Wind, & Fire, the hip licks of Take 6, and the brass bite of the Harry Connick Jr. Big Band, all created by the human voice alone.

Hailed "one of the best pop-jazz vocal groups in the world" by the San Francisco Chronicle, m-pact is respected worldwide as a cutting edge trailblazer in the realm of vocal music. Emerging from an age of auto-tune and overproduction, this Los Angeles-based sextet has cultivated a new generation of ears hungry for the fresh, raw power of nature's "first instrument" - the human voice.

Touring renowned fine arts halls and jazz festivals across four continents, m-pact has performed with pop superstars Sheryl Crow, Boyz II Men, Kenny G, Liza Minnelli, Babyface, Rick Springfield and Jackson Browne to name a few, as well as with jazz legends from Ray Charles, Natalie Cole, Bobby McFerrin, Take 6, and the New York Voices to the Woody Herman Orchestra and the Maynard Ferguson Big Band. Over the last dozen years, their signature sound has been used in both TV themes and animated Disney feature films, and is enjoyed on syndicated radio worldwide.

Ian Hobson
Sunday, Oct. 11, 2015 at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $20, School Age $5
ianhobson.net

Ian Hobson is a musician of tremendous versatility who has earned an international reputation as a pianist, conductor and educator. Hobson's programs consistently demonstrate a repertoire that spans the centuries and demands an extraordinary command of styles and scholarly vision, in addition to great keyboard prowess.

An Afternoon with Groucho
Sunday, Oct. 25, 2015 at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$30, School Age $5
eveningwithgroucho.com

Award-winning actor/director/playwright Frank Ferrante recreates his PBS, New York and London acclaimed portrayal of legendary comedian Groucho Marx in this fast paced 90 minutes of hilarity. The two-act comedy consists of the best Groucho one-liners, anecdotes and songs including "Hooray for Captain Spalding," and "Lydia, the Tattooed Lady." The audience literally becomes part of the show as Ferrante ad-libs his way throughout the performance in grand Groucho style. Accompanied by his onstage pianist, Ferrante portrays the young Groucho of stage and film and reacquaints the audience with the likes of brothers Harpo, Chico, Zeppo and Gummo, Charlie Chaplin, W.C. Fields, Marx foil, Margaret Dumont and MGM's Louis B. Mayer. 

Holiday Jazz
Saturday Dec. 12, 2015, at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$25, School Age $5

They're back playing a jazzy holiday fusion. The Millikin University Faculty Jazz Sextet returns once again to get you in the Holiday spirit with their jazzy swing on Holiday classics. Upbeat and soothing favorites are sure to make everyone in the family tap their toes and sing along. Celebrate the sounds of the season during our 8th Annual Holiday concert with Millikin University's own School of Music faculty: Dave Burdick, Brian Justison, Chris Nolte, Perry Rask and Steve Widenhofer. The sextet will be joined on stage by guest vocalist and Millikin University alumni Angel Spiccia Slykas '03.

Step Afrika!
Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$30, School Age $5
stepafrika.org

Like a tap-dance without shoes or a band without instruments stepping is a rising art form and an important part of America's artistic and cultural heritage. In stepping, the body is used as an instrument to create intricate rhythms and sounds through a combination of footsteps, claps and the spoken word.

The stepping tradition in the United States grew out of song and dance rituals practiced by historically African-American fraternities and sororities, beginning in the early 1900s. In addition to step shows and competitions on college campuses, today stepping can also be found in schools, churches and community organizations around the country. The form is also spreading its wings to new venues and participants, such as Latino and Asian-American Greek-letter organizations.

Step Afrika!, as the first professional dance company dedicated to the tradition of stepping, is evolving the dance form to include other styles, such as tap, modern and hip hop, and introducing stepping to new audiences around the world.

Celtic Nights-Spirit of Freedom
Friday, Feb. 19, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $25-$45, School Age $5
camimusic.com

Direct from Ireland, Spirit of Freedom tells the story of Irish independence, beginning 100 years ago with the Easter Rising. Akin to America's 4th of July, the Easter Rising of 1916 created the Ireland we know and love today. Through music, song, dance and storytelling, Celtic Nights honors the struggle of people fighting to gain freedom, independence and true democracy through music, song, dance and storytelling with pride and passion.

The cast of three male vocalists and three female singers, six of Ireland's most talented and coveted international dancers and musicians will leave the theatre ringing with the sounds of Celtic Music old and new. Songs will be sung, dances will be danced, and music will be played. Celtic Nights will capture the essence of great people from a small Island and their journey of hope and desire.

Cinderella-The Ballet
Saturday, March 12, 2016 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $25-$45, School Age $5
minnesotaballet.org

Don't miss the Minnesota Ballet as they bring to life this favorite fairy tale, set in the lush world of Renaissance Tuscany. Cinderella's life is difficult enough with all the work she is expected to do, and her step mother means very well, but, oh, those step sisters. They have all the gawkiness and evil tricks, but Cinderella has all the grace and sweetness. The step sisters flirt with the dancing master as they try to polish up their dance steps. At the ball they try to flirt with the Prince. All seems lost for Cinderella's chance to go to the ball until the Three Graces arrive to magically produce a gown fit for a future princess and a perfect little coach fit to take her to the ball. It isn't long before the Prince has eyes only for the new arrival, he then will search the kingdom over to find the beautiful maiden who left the ball so mysteriously.

Choreographer Allen Fields has created an appealing version of the Cinderella ballet, pared down to its essentials, the story sparkling with elegant dance and livened by the evil antics of the step sisters. Cinderella is performed by the Minnesota Ballet Company, all professional dancers, but the non-dancing roles of King and Queen are filled by local community celebrities.

Dan Aykroyd, Judith Belushi and Music Director Paul Shaffer present "The Official Blue Brothers™ Revue"
Friday, April 8, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $20-$35, School Age $5
bluesbrothersofficialsite.com

The Official Blues Brothers™ Revue duo is sanctioned by Dan Aykroyd and Judith Belushi to don the official hat and sunglasses and walk in the legendary footsteps of Jake and Elwood Blues. Discovered in Las Vegas, performers Wayne Catania and Kieron Lafferty capture the infectious humor and unbridled spirit of the Blues Brothers like no one since John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd walked the stage. Backed by a powerhouse band, they'll give you a show to remember, packed with classic hits from the Blues Brothers catalog, including "Soul Man," "Rubber Biscuit," "Sweet Home Chicago," and more.

Rhythmic Circus-Feet Don’t Fail Me Now!
Saturday, May 7, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $25-$40, School Age $5
rhythmiccircus.com

Rhythmic Circus has quickly risen from an underground percussive-dance phenomenon to an innovative live performance company known for transforming their tap shoes into instruments of rhythm.

Home grown hoofers from Minneapolis hit the road with a trunk full of tap shoes, funky costumes and a big brass band, ready to burst onto the stage with Feet Don't Fail Me Now! "Heatbox" the human beatbox, joins the swinging' seven-piece funk band to accompany each tap, shuffle, and stomp with a clang, riff and refrain. It's easy to see why this troupe was a 2012 winner of the Edinburgh Festival "Spirit of the Fringe" Award. In this joyous parade of genre-hopping music and hard-hitting percussive dance, you'll be jumping out of your seat and dancing to the beat.

Kirkland Fine Arts Center

Millikin University believes that the arts are essential to the enrichment of society and a fundamental part of the educational process. Millikin's founder, James Millikin, declared that men and women should have both a classical and practical education to meet the demands of a changing society. The Kirkland Performing Arts Series supports this mission by encouraging both students and the community to participate in its programs and understand its multicultural heritage through performing arts events.

For 45 years Kirkland has been the place to be for the arts in the Decatur community and the surrounding area. Kirkland Fine Arts Center has presented amazing talent, hilarious comedy, and fascinating speakers. Some of the artists have included Pete Fountain, Duke Ellington, Patti Page, Ray Charles, Olivia Newton John and Bob Newhart. Touring companies have included RENT, CATS, Showboat, Master Class with Maria Callas, and Cirque Eloize. Speeches by distinguished guests like White House correspondent Helen Thomas, Leonard Nimoy and Colin L. Powell have been presented.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit kirklandfinearts.com. Events at Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.

Millikin University's Kirkland Fine Arts Center is pleased to announce its 2014-2015 Performing Arts Series. For over 40 years, Kirkland Fine Arts Center has been the place to be for live performing arts for Decatur and the surrounding area. The tradition continues this coming season with a diverse lineup that is not only family-friendly, but fun for all.

"I am very excited about the upcoming season," said Kirkland Fine Arts Center's Director Jan Traughber. "This season has very unique events that should appeal to not only our established patron base but hopefully attract new patrons as well. My wish is to offer quality programming for those that already appreciate live performing arts, but also to instill an admiration of the same in the next generation. All events are appropriate for a multigenerational audience. I hope that more of the community takes the opportunity to come enjoy the arts that Millikin University and Kirkland Fine Arts Center has to offer."

Early-order ticket options are available to all the events. If you purchase tickets for three to five separate events of your choice you receive 10 percent off your order. Purchase any six events or more and receive 15 percent off. Single tickets will go on sale to the public beginning Aug. 25 for all 2014 events. Single tickets for all 2015 events will go on sale to the public beginning Dec. 15.

For further information on purchasing tickets, contact the Kirkland Box Office at 217.424.6318 or visit kirklandfinearts.com. The following is the lineup of events for the 2014-2015 season.

American English: Beatles Tribute Band
Friday, Sept. 5, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $20-$30; School Age $5

American English is simply the best Beatles tribute story of our time. At the inception of the band, they were voted "number one" for three consecutive years by thousands of Beatles fans as winners of sound-a-like contests at Beatlefest. American English's demand here and abroad, coupled with their spectacular fan base, has made them one of the most sought after shows in theatres worldwide. Come celebrate with the band that is recognized by Sam Leach, the original Beatles promoter who has said: "They are without doubt the world's premier Beatles tribute band. And a great bunch of lads...just like the Beatles were."

The Hit Men: Featuring the former stars of Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons
Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $25-$35; School Age $5

You loved Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, Tommy James and the Shondells, Carly Simon, Cat Stevens, Elton John, and Jim Croce. Come see The Hit Men, an amazing look back through rock 'n' roll history featuring former members of these megastar acts performing your favorite songs from "Oh What a Night," "Who Loves You," "Sherry," and many other Four Seasons hits to "Peace Train," "Crocodile Rock," "Leroy Brown," and "Mony Mony." The Hit Men will regale you with lots of great stories about what it was like on the road and in recording sessions with Frankie, Tommy, Carly, Cat, Jim, and Elton. Relive the glory days of rock 'n' roll with The Hit Men.

John O'Conor
Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014 – 4 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $20; School Age $5

Irish pianist John O'Conor has been gathering wonderful reviews for his masterly playing for over 40 years. Having studied in his native Dublin, in Vienna with Dieter Weber, and being tutored by the legendary Wilhelm Kempff his unanimous 1st Prize at the International Beethoven Piano Competition in Vienna in 1973 opened the door to a career that has brought him all around the world.

His recordings of the complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas led CD Review to say that he "by now should be recognized as the world's premier Beethoven interpreter" and his recent recordings of the complete Beethoven Piano Concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra and Andreas Delfs have also been greeted with acclaim.

Sierra Boggess: "Part of OUR World"
Featuring members of the Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra

Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014 – 8 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $20-$30; School Age $5

Since her Broadway debut as Ariel in "The Little Mermaid," 2004 Millikin graduate Sierra Boggess has become one of the most sought after young artists in the New York and London theatre markets. Referred to by Tony Award winning Producer/Director Harold Price as "one of the most talented and intelligent artists in the musical theatre today," Sierra dazzles audiences with her unique brand of charm, humor and virtuosity.

Sierra returns to Millikin directly from her engagement as Christine Daaé in Broadway's "The Phantom of the Opera" to present a one-night only performance sure to delight patrons of all ages. Based on her critically acclaimed cabaret appearance at New York's 54 Below, this eclectic mix of theater and pop songs brings Sierra back to the Millikin community that first recognized her star potential.

Golden Dragon Acrobats
Saturday, Nov. 1, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $20-$30; School Age $5

The Golden Dragon Acrobats represent the best of a time honored tradition that began more than 25 centuries ago. The Golden Dragons are recognized throughout the United States and abroad as the premiere Chinese acrobatic touring company of today.

The reputation of the company is solidly rooted in a commitment to the highest of production values and an attention to artistic details that is unparalleled in the art form. World renowned impresario Danny Chang and choreographer Angela Chang combine award-winning acrobatics, traditional dance, spectacular costumes, ancient and contemporary music and theatrical techniques to present a show of breathtaking skill, and spellbinding beauty.

Vespers 2014
Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 6 & 7, 2014 – 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $12; Seniors & Children $8

One of Millikin University's most popular events, Vespers (which means "evening prayer") provides the context for a seasonal concert that has become one of the University's most beloved traditions. Performed by 350 singers and instrumentalists, Vespers features traditional and new music for choirs and brass. Individual tickets go on sale Nov. 3.

Holiday Jazz
Saturday, Dec. 13, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $10-$20; School Age $5

The Millikin University Faculty Jazz Sextet returns once again to get you in the Holiday spirit with their jazzy swing on Holiday classics. Upbeat and soothing favorites are sure to make everyone in the family tap their toes and sing along. Come celebrate the sounds of the season during the group's 7th Annual Holiday concert with Millikin University's own School of Music faculty: Dave Burdick, Brian Justison, Chris Nolte, Perry Rask, Randy Reyman, and Steve Widenhofer. Once again, the sextet will be joined on stage by guest vocalists and Millikin University alumni Angel Spiccia Slykas and John Musick.

Step Afrika!
Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $15-$25; School Age $5

Discover the world of stepping with Step Afrika! Like a tap dance without shoes, or a band without instruments, stepping is percussive dance that uses kicks, stomps, claps, and chants – all linked to African and modern dance traditions. As the first professional company devoted to stepping, DC's world–renowned Step Afrika! brings a high-energy performance to the stage: a feast for both the eyes and ears.

The Bob Eubanks Not So Newlywed Game
Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $20-$30; School Age $5

The Bob Eubanks Not So Newlywed Game Show is an evening of laughter, fun, and prizes. Eubanks, one of show businesses most successful entrepreneurs, tells backstage stories about some of America's most popular celebrities. He also shows hilarious video clips of some of your favorite game shows. But that's only part of the fun; someone has the chance to win $100,000. It's called the Not So Newlywed Game, because it doesn't matter how long you have been together. Eight lucky couples are chosen at random from the audience to play the Not So Newlywed Game. The questions are funny, the couples are funny, and they play for great grand prizes. It's an evening of games, prizes, and laughter that you will never forget.

RUNA with special guest Socks in the Frying Pan
Saturday, March 21, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $15-$25; School Age $5

RUNA draws on the diverse musical backgrounds of its band members and offers a contemporary and refreshing approach to traditional and more recently composed Celtic material. Through their repertoire of both highly energetic and graceful, acoustic melodies, along with their fusion of music from Ireland, Scotland, Canada, and the United States, this vocal and instrumental ensemble gives its arrangements of traditional songs and tunes a fresh sound.

Socks in the Frying Pan is a fresh, young trio from Country Clare blending Irish traditional melodies with an innovative rhythmic and melodic garnish.

Kurt Elling: Elling Swings Sinatra
Saturday, April 11, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $25-$40; School Age $5

Grammy winner Kurt Elling is among the world's foremost jazz vocalists. He has won every DownBeat Critics Poll for the last 14 years and has been named "Male Singer of the Year" by the Jazz Journalists Association eight times in that same span. Every one of Elling's 10 albums has been nominated for a Grammy.

Elling's rich baritone spans four octaves and features both astonishing technical mastery and emotional depth. His repertoire includes original compositions and modern interpretations of standards, all of which are springboards for inspired improvisation, scatting, spoken word, and poetry.

Intergalactic Nemesis
Saturday, May 2, 2015 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Adults $25-$35; School Age $5

Three actors voice the dozens of characters, a Foley artist creates all the sound effects, and a pianist plays a cinematic score, while more than 1,250 individual, full-color, hi-res comic book panels tell a hilarious sci-fi adventure story visually from an enormous movie screen, and it's all done live in front of your eyes.

The Intergalactic Nemesis has been featured on NPR, PBS, Conan O'Brien, the Wall Street Journal, and dozens of other outlets. The New York Post called its limited run on Broadway "Great fun! (A) happily retro multimedia extravaganza," the Cleveland Examiner called it "pure theater magic," and The Austinist recommended it as "totally nuts and a ton of fun…Do not miss it."

Kirkland Fine Arts Center

Millikin University believes that the arts are essential to the enrichment of society and a fundamental part of the educational process. Millikin's founder, James Millikin, declared that men and women should have both a classical and practical education to meet the demands of a changing society. The Kirkland Performing Arts Series supports this mission by encouraging both students and the community to participate in its programs and understand its multicultural heritage through performing arts events.

Kirkland Fine Arts Center is the primary not-for-profit fine arts presenting organization in Macon County. During past seasons, over 400 professional performances have been staged at Kirkland, with Broadway tours of CATS, Showboat, and RENT, Grammy award nominees including Patti Page, The Neville Brothers, and Little Richard, animal kingdom expert Jack Hannah, PostSecret blog founder Frank Warren, internationally acclaimed dance companies David Parsons, River North, Cirque Eloize, and MOMIX, popular celebrities Bill Cosby and Howie Mandel, comedian Jay Leno, environmental advocates Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Jean-Michel Cousteau, performing ensembles including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Juilliard String Quartet, and London City Opera, and speeches by distinguished guests like White House correspondent Helen Thomas, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, and former Illinois governor Jim Edgar.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
Millikin University welcomes Masters of Motown to Kirkland Fine Arts Center on Friday, Feb. 14 beginning at 7:30 p.m. The performance will feature many of the greatest hits from the legendary Motown era.

In the early 60s some of the most iconic names in the history of popular music were discovered in the Motor City, better known simply as Motown. Masters of Motown is a celebration of these artists, their music and their style. The show features stylishly costumed, fully choreographed tributes to both male and female groups of the era. Masters of Motown's dynamic vocalists are backed by a band of seasoned musicians who have been performing together for decades.

The audience will take the ultimate stroll down memory lane as they relive, or discover for the first time, the incredible harmonies and smooth moves made famous by many of the greatest recording acts of all-time, including The Temptations, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, The Four Tops, Diana Ross & The Supremes, The Jackson Five, Martha Reeves & The Vandellas, Stevie Wonder, The Commodores and many more. This high-energy show is perfect for audiences of all ages.

For more information on Masters of Motown, visit www.mastersofmotown.com.

Tickets for the event are $15-$30 for adults and $7.50-$15 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. A $2.50 fee will be charged for credit card purchases. This is a per transaction fee, not per ticket, and applies to online and Box Office orders. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday - Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.

Millikin University's Kirkland Fine Arts Center is pleased to announce its 2013-2014 Performing Arts Series. Currently in its 44th year, the series offers a unique blend of affordable entertainment sure to delight patrons young and old.

"I'm very excited about the upcoming season," said Kirkland Director Jan Traughber. "The goal at Kirkland Fine Arts Center is to offer programming that will attract the attention of the audience and hold on to it. Our intention is to bring interesting programming that will excite and engage."

The following is the lineup of events for the 2013-2014 season. Tickets are available immediately for all events – including Vespers – if three or more events are purchased. Early ticket buyers will receive 10 percent off three to five separate events, and 15 percent off six or more events. Single ticket sales for the fall semester 2013 events will begin August 26 and for the spring semester on December 9, 2013. For further information on purchasing tickets, contact the Kirkland Box Office by calling 217.424.6318 or visiting www.kirklandfinearts.com.

The Ultimate Michael Jackson Experience by Joby Rogers
Friday, Sept. 13, 2013 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$20-$35 adults; $10-$17.50 children

Joby Rogers (as Michael Jackson) is a gifted entertainer whose talents have gained him international recognition. The only Michael Jackson impersonator to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine, he was personally chosen by Michael as his number one choice of all impersonators after reviewing 116 of the top Michael Jackson impersonators in the world.

Joby has performed on tour in arenas, theaters, casinos, and colleges for corporate and private functions in the United States and internationally. Joby has made appearances with celebrities such as B.B. King, Lenny Kravitz, Jon Bon Jovi, Duran Duran, Cyndi Lauper, Maroon 5, Jimmy Buffet, and many others.

iO Theater – Homecoming Event
Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013 – 8 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$18 adults; $15 alum

In Whirled News Tonight, audience members provide the inspiration for an evening of improvised comedy by clipping articles from local and national newspapers and periodicals. From these journalistic suggestions, a team of experienced improvisers creates a fast-paced, topical, intelligent and, above all, hilarious show. Equal parts political satire, news parody and social commentary, Whirled News Tonight is improvisation that is just as sure to spark debate as it is to tickle the funny bone.

Arlo Guthrie
Friday, Oct. 11, 2013 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$25-$40 adults; $12.50-$20 children

Arlo Guthrie returns to Kirkland with his "Here Come the Kids" tour in celebration of his father, Woody Guthrie. Arlo honors the legacy of Woody Guthrie through a spirited musical tribute. Arlo's songwriting, humor, activism, and unequaled manner of telling a tale exhibit the Guthrie family traits that his father imparted. This tour emphasizes the best-loved songs and stories the Guthrie family closely associated with the distinguished patriarch. Be part of the continuing celebration as Arlo Guthrie honors the tremendous contributions his father made to American music and the social climate.

Cirque-Tacular's CIRCURIOUS
Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$15-$30 adults; $7.50-$15 children

CIRCURIOUS is a heart-stopping, mind-boggling display of artistry and athleticism. Discover all the wow factor and star quality of the circus tent, concert hall, and Broadway stage in one fantastic evening. Indulge your curiosities and celebrate your senses as aerialists, acrobats, contortionists, fire artists, illusionists, singers, dancers and indescribable feats reignite your belief in human potential.

Vespers 2013
Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 7 & 8, 2013 – 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$10 adults; $6 seniors

One of Millikin University's most popular events, Vespers (which means "evening prayer") provides the context for a seasonal concert that has become one of the University's most beloved traditions. Performed by 350 Millikin singers and instrumentalists, Vespers features traditional and new music for choirs and brass. Individual tickets go on sale November 1, 2013.

Holiday Jazz
Saturday, Dec. 14, 2013 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$10-$20 adults; $5-$10 children

The Millikin University Faculty Jazz Sextet will once again get you in the Holiday spirit with a reprise of their jazzy swing on Christmas classics. Upbeat and soothing favorites are sure to make everyone in the family tap their toes and sing along. Come celebrate the sounds of the season during our sixth annual Holiday concert with Millikin University's own School of Music faculty: Brian Justison, Randy Reyman, Dave Burdick, Perry Rask, Steve Widenhofer, and Ed Schaller. Once again, the sextet will be joined on stage by guest vocalists and Millikin University alumni Angel Spiccia Slykas & John Musick.

Masters of Motown
Friday, Feb. 14, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$15-$30 adults; $7.50-$15 children

In the early 60s, some of the most iconic names in the history of popular music were discovered in the Motor City of Detroit, Mich., better known simply as Motown.

Masters of Motown is a celebration of these artists, their music and style. The show features stylishly costumed, fully choreographed tributes to both male and female groups backed by a live band. Masters of Motown includes the popular TFC Dance Band and The Fabulous Crooners Doo-Wop singers. The Crooners stroll throughout the show, and after the show you'll want to continue to dance to the best Top 40, Disco, R&B and Rock 'n' Roll.

Masters of Motown perform favorites such as The Temptations, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, The Four Tops, Diana Ross & The Supremes, The Jackson Five, Martha Reeves & The Vandellas, Stevie Wonder, The Commodores and many more.

Tomáseen Foley's IRISH TIMES
Saturday, March 8, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$10-$20 adults; $5-$10 children

Rekindle the flame in the hearth with stories, music, song, and dance from the infinitely rich treasury of Ireland's cultural heritage. Return to the days before the motor car, the television, and the telephone, and spend an evening with Tomáseen Foley – and some of the most gifted Celtic musicians, dancers and singers performing today.

Duo Melis
Saturday, March 15, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$25 adults; $12.50 children

Spanish guitarist Susana Prieto and Greek guitarist Alexis Muzurakis made their debut as Duo Melis in 1999 at the International Guitar Festival of Volos (Greece). Since then, they have performed in such prestigious halls as the Berliner Philharmonie, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall in Moscow, the Megaron in Athens, and the Merkin Concert Hall in New York. They are in great demand for concerts and master classes at international guitar festivals and prestigious concert series in Europe and America. This is a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the talents of these guest artists who are here as part of the 22nd Annual Mid-America Guitar Festival. This festival is being hosted by Millikin University's School of Music classical guitar program.

Sonus Brass Quintet
Saturday, March 29, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Westminster Presbyterian Church
$20 adults; $10 children

Sonus Brass was formed in 1987 by five highly successful brass performers/teachers to share their own close friendship and love of music and brass ensemble playing with audiences around the world and to help both students and professionals achieve a higher artistic level of brass performance and musical interpretation. In addition, it has always been the goal of Sonus Brass to bring to their concerts and seminars an international feeling of good will and to create lasting friendships through teaching and performing.

Rhonda Vincent and the Rage
Saturday, April 12, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$20-$30 adults; $10-$15 children

"The New Queen of Bluegrass," Rhonda Vincent, as proclaimed by the Wall Street Journal is a top draw in bluegrass music and beyond. She has been featured in People Magazine, Oprah's "O" Magazine, appeared with such notables as Dolly Parton and Norah Jones, and received praise from high profile fans such as Bernie Taupin and Levon Helms. Rhonda Vincent's music knows no boundaries. With over 80 awards to their credit, Rhonda Vincent and the Rage have emerged as the most decorated band in bluegrass. Among their honors are Song of the Year, Entertainer of the Year, and an unrivaled seven consecutive Female Vocalist of the Year awards from the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA).

Night Fever - The Bee Gees Tribute
Saturday, May 10, 2014 – 7:30 p.m.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
$20-$30 adults; $10-$15 children

"Night Fever"— The Bee Gees Tribute is the largest production of the Bee Gees in the world. This all Canadian cast has been touring for the past 10 years, from Disneyland to Russia, recreating the look and sound of the Bee Gees. Capturing a full history of the Bee Gees, "Night Fever" includes songs from "To Love Somebody," "Massachusetts," "I Got to Get A Message," "I Started A Joke," "Jive Talking," "More Than A Woman," "Night Fever," "You Should Be Dancing," "Tragedy," "Stayin' Alive" and many more.

Millikin University believes that the arts are essential to the enrichment of society and a fundamental part of the educational process. Millikin's founder, James Millikin, declared that men and women should have both a classical and practical education to meet the demands of a changing society. The Kirkland Performing Arts Series supports this mission by encouraging both students and the community to participate in its programs and understand our multicultural heritage through performing arts events.

The Kirkland Fine Arts Center is the primary not-for-profit fine arts presenting organization in Macon County. During past seasons, over 100 professional performances have been staged at Kirkland, with Broadway tours of CATS, Showboat, and RENT, Grammy award nominees including Patti Page, The Neville Brothers, and Little Richard, animal kingdom expert Jack Hannah, PostSecret blog founder Frank Warren, internationally acclaimed dance companies David Parsons, River North, Cirque Eloize, and MOMIX, popular celebrities Bill Cosby and Howie Mandel, comedian Jay Leno, environmental advocates Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Jean-Michel Cousteau, performing ensembles including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Juilliard String Quartet, and London City Opera, and speeches by distinguished guests like White House correspondent Helen Thomas, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, and former Illinois governor Jim Edgar.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
Millikin University's Kirkland Fine Arts Center presents "Broadway Today!" on Saturday, May 11 at 7:30 p.m.

"Broadway Today!" is the concert event that lets audiences experience the music, laughs and thrills from Broadway's most recent seasons performed by some of the leading talent in New York today. This unique event was created in response to audience demand for the most recent Broadway hits combined with familiar favorites.

"Broadway Today!" brings the audience the best from the past three seasons on Broadway with all the new shows, revivals and long-running hits in one bright package featuring the most current shows as well as classics like "West Side Story" and "South Pacific." Due to the immediate, up-to-the-minute nature of the show, the program is always changing to reflect Broadway's most recent landscape.

The event features David Burnham; a member of the original Broadway cast of the six-time Tony Award winning musical "The Light in the Piazza," performing on both the Tony Awards and the PBS telecast "Live From Lincoln Center"; Brian Lane Green; a Tony Award nominee for Best Actor in a Musical for his performance in "Starmites," Green made his Broadway debut as Huck Finn in "Big River" and went on to star in the first national tour of the show; Christina Saffran Ashford; Christina's career is extensive having starred as Kathy Seldon in "Singin' in the Rain," Maggie in "A Chorus Line," and Zaneeta in "The Music Man"; Jessica Hendy; Hendy has toured nationally starring in "Cats" and "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat," and can be heard on many demo recordings of new musicals and compilation CDs; and Musical Director John Boswell; Boswell has served as musical director for Judy Collins, Andy Williams and Bob Newhart, and played the role of Moose in the national tour of "Crazy For You."

For more information on "Broadway Today!" visit www.spot-onentertainment.com/broadway-today/.

Tickets for the event are $18-$30 for adults and $12-$16 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. A $2.50 fee will be charged for credit card purchases. This is a per transaction fee, not per ticket, and applies to online and Box Office orders. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
Millikin University welcomes critically acclaimed contemporary dance company Thodos Dance Chicago (TDC) to the Kirkland Fine Arts Center on Saturday, April 6 at 7:30 p.m. Thodos Dance Chicago delivers modern dance to audiences in a unique style that incorporates a variety of dance forms performed with innovative flair.

"Breathtakingly athletic," "powerfully beautiful," and performing "vibrant choreography" are among the many critical accolades that Thodos Dance Chicago has received since its inception. The company performs on national and international dance circuits, as well as in Chicago's most prominent dance events. The company's highly unique mission of inspiring expression through dance education, dance creation, and dance performance has established Thodos Dance Chicago as an innovative presence in American contemporary dance.

Highlights of the company's annual performance season include the fall and winter concerts, touring engagements, as well as the "New Dances" choreography series presented each summer. TDC has been featured at Chicago's annual "Dance for Life" fundraising benefit for HIV/AIDS and in Dance Chicago's month long Fall Festival of Dance.

Thodos Dance Chicago has performed at more than 50 venues in 10 states, and at events such as the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, International Istanbul Dance Festival, and the Ankara Music and Dance Festival. In addition to numerous individual studio artists and musicians, TDC has collaborated with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and with the Fulcrum Point New Music Project.

For more information on Thodos Dance Chicago, visit www.thodosdancechicago.org.

Tickets for the event are $16-$28 for adults and $10-$14 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. A $2.50 fee will be charged for credit card purchases. This is a per transaction fee, not per ticket, and applies to online and Box Office orders. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
Millikin University's Kirkland Fine Arts Center presents the contemporary traditional Celtic music of Craicmore on Saturday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Four-part harmony and driving rhythm from guitar, bass, bodhrán drums, flutes, bagpipes, and a rumbling didgeridoo accent the warmth and passion of Craicmore's fiery performances. Craicmore includes members Nancy Johnston (vocals, bodhrán, hard shoe), John MacAdams (vocals, guitar, percussion, didgeridoo), Sean FayeCullen (vocals, bass) and Dave Champagne (Irish flute, orchestral flute, whistles and pipes).

Craicmore has toured for over 10 years throughout the Western States and recently performed a 14 concert engagement in Shanghai, China. Formed in 1992, they draw their words and music from the traditional music of Ireland and Scotland and claim influences as diverse as the Afro Celts, Chieftains, Pogues, rock, and Australian indigenous music.

As their musical interests and commitment deepened, Craicmore moved from performing at small local street fairs, museums and libraries in the mid-'90s to main stage performances at prestigious folk festivals, Scottish and Irish cultural events and concert halls throughout the United States.

Craicmore's approach to each and every song is framed by abiding respect for the material and the musicians' sheer joy in the music and willingness to take chances, enriching the tradition with their own time and place.

For more information on Craicmore, visit www.craicmore.com.

Tickets are $14-$20 for adults and $10-$14 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. A $2.50 fee will be charged for credit card purchases. This is a per transaction fee, not per ticket, and applies to online and Box Office orders. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
Millikin University welcomes The Spencers' production of "Theatre of Illusion" to the Kirkland Fine Arts Center on Friday, Feb. 22 at 7:30 p.m.

"Theatre of Illusion" is not your run-of-the-mill magic show, and The Spencers are not your typical magicians. It’s about spectacle, drama, danger and personality, and that’s exactly what separates the husband-wife team of The Spencers from every other magical performer in the field.

The Spencers' production is a unique fusion of magic and illusion. By blending the theatrical elements of a Broadway-style production with the high energy of a rock concert, these artists take their audience on a journey to the brink of impossibility, and back again. Audience members don't simply watch the show, but are also invited to participate in the magic. The Spencers have been described as "Modern Day Houdinis" by the critics. The duo presents a big, high-tech stage show that combines drama, comedy, romance and suspense with elaborate stage illusions.

The Spencers are the only artists in history to be named "Performing Arts Entertainers of the Year" for a record-breaking six consecutive years and have twice been named "America's Best Entertainers." Each year, the International Magicians Society (IMS) recognizes the best magicians in the world by giving a select few the Merlin Award in a limited number of categories. The Spencers were recently named "International Magicians of the Year," the top honor given by the IMS.

The Spencers have earned the reputation as one of the most highly regarded acts in magical entertainment and one of the most sought-after illusion teams in the business. The Spencers continue to redefine "magic" for a new generation of spectators, delivering a larger-than-life sense of wonder to their audience.

Thanks to a grant from the Arts Midwest Touring fund, a community outreach program will be offered by The Spencers: Theatre of Illusion on Wednesday, Feb. 20 to the clients at the Macon Resources, Inc. facility. The artists will be using the concepts from the programs Hocus Focus and Healing of Magic: The Use of Magic Tricks in Therapeutic Settings. The aforementioned programs have been developed in cooperation with speech, occupational, physical and recreational therapists to bring clients the greatest impact for recovery. The Spencers will also be presenting to Millikin University students in art classes led by Millikin Assistant Professor of Art, Annette Russo. For further information regarding this programming, please contact Kirkland Fine Arts Center Director, Jan Traughber, at 217.424.3925.

This engagement is supported by the Arts Midwest Touring Fund, a program of Arts Midwest, which is generously supported by the National Endowment for the Arts with additional contributions from the Illinois Arts Council.
    

For more information on The Spencers: Theatre of Illusion, visit www.spencersmagic.com.

Tickets for the event on Feb. 22 are $16-$28 for adults and $10-$14 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. A $2.50 fee will be charged for credit card purchases. This is a per transaction fee, not per ticket, and applies to online and Box Office orders. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
Millikin University welcomes Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience to the Kirkland Fine Arts Center on Saturday, Feb. 9 at 7:30 p.m.

For more than two decades Grammy award winning artist Terrance Simien, 8th generation Louisiana Creole, has been shattering the myths about what his indigenous Creole Zydeco music is and is not. Zydeco is one of the most unique and wildly popular forms of American roots music, representing the multicultural Creoles of Southwest Louisiana and featuring the core instrumentation of the accordion and the frottoir (rub board).

Simien is blessed with an extraordinary talent that expresses the deepest human emotions through the original instrument, the voice. His eclectic fusion of Zydeco takes you on a multicultural musical tour of the world. Incorporating diverse music styles, he creates a hypnotic blend of Zydeco-roots-New Orleans funk-reggae-flavored-Afro-Caribbean-world music that will force you out of your seat and onto the dance floor. He has found a way to express himself as a relevant and evolving artist who remains reverent to his roots and musical legacy. His live performances have garnered him a level of international success and his fully engaged audiences around the globe have become more Zydeco experienced than ever before.

Leading his Zydeco Experience Band, Simien has become one of the most respected and internationally recognized touring and recording artists in roots music today. During the past 25 years Simien has shared studio and stage with Robert Palmer, Stevie Wonder, Los Lobos, Dr. John, the Meters, Alan Toussaint, Paul Simon and Dave Matthews Band to name a few.

His recordings have been praised by Rolling Stone, Billboard, other notable music industry publications and major daily newspapers. His extensive discography dates back to vinyl 45’s. Since his debut on a major rock label in 1991, he now has a total of seven full length CD’s and dozens of compilations and guest appearances.

For more information on Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience, visit www.terrancesimien.com.

Tickets for the event are $16-$28 for adults and $10-$14 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. A $2.50 fee will be charged for credit card purchases. This is a per transaction fee, not per ticket, and applies to online and Box Office orders. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Kirkland Fine Arts Center, please visit www.kirklandfinearts.com. Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
The Millikin University Faculty Jazz Sextet, featuring returning guest vocalist Angel Spiccia '03, will present the fifth annual Holiday Concert on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kirkland Fine Arts Center.

The concert will feature a jazzy swing on Christmas classics, including a number of upbeat and soothing favorites that are sure to make everyone in the family tap their toes and sing along.

"The music will be a combination of well-known and perhaps not so well-known Christmas tunes set in a jazz style," remarked Dr. Steve Widenhofer, professor and director of the Millikin School of Music, and piano player for the jazz sextet. "The setting is more informal and we have a great time putting the music together, and there is always a little humor involved too."

Other members of the sextet include Brian Justison, professor of music, on percussion; Ed Schaller, adjunct instructor of music, on bass; Randy Reyman, associate professor of music, on trumpet; Dr. Dave Burdick, associate professor of music, on guitar; and Dr. Perry Rask, professor of music, on saxophone.

Tickets are $14-$20 for adults and $10-$14 for children and may be purchased at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center Box Office, by phone at 217.424.6318 or online at www.kirklandfinearts.com. Kirkland Box Office hours are Monday-Tuesday and Thursday-Friday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Events at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center are partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the Midwest Arts Council.
1 - 10 Next
Skip navigation links
Press Releases
There are no items in this list.

 
Millikin University - Decatur, IL
 
Millikin University - Decatur, IL