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'The Book of Mormon' Headlines Center for the Performing Arts 2019-20 Season

by on July 08, 2019 1:30 PM

Seven performances of the Tony Award-winning musical "The Book of Mormon" national tour are among the highlights of the Center for the Performing Arts at Penn State's 2019-20 lineup announced on Monday

The 26-event season includes worldwide artistic talent ranging from a wide array of renowned musicians to eclectic dance performances to nationally touring Broadway musicals. Tickets for each show go on sale beginning July 18.

“From return engagements and debuts by an amazing array of renowned artists and companies, I am so excited about the coming season and can’t wait to open our doors and let the performances begin,” center director George Trudeau said in a news release.

Performances of "The Book of Mormon" — which features book, music and lyrics by Trey Parker, Robert Lopez and Matt Stone — begin Oct. 8 and will continue through Oct. 13 at Eisenhower Auditorium. Winner of nine Tony Awards, including Best Musical, a Grammy and other honors, the show has been  hailed by the New York Times as "the best musical of this century," and by Entertainment Weekly as "the funniest musical of all time."

Other Broadway musicals headed to Eisenhower Auditorium this season include "A Bronx Tale" (Oct. 30) and the returns of "Rent" (Nov. 19), "Jersey Boys" (Jan. 28), and "The Color Purple" (April 15).

Acts featured this season also include funk-jazz legend legend Maceo Parker (Sept. 26), violinist Itzhak Perlman and pianist Rohan De Silva (Nov. 14), singer Lizz Wright (Feb. 5), contemporary classical ensemble Kronos Quartet with Iranian vocalist Mahsa Vahdat (Feb. 18), sensory-friendly comic folk opera "Night Train 57" (April 5), and Hong Kong Ballet’s “Alice (in Wonderland)” (April 24).

Among other highlights, the creators of  Erth’s “Dinosaur Zoo Live” return to Penn State Feb. 20 with “Prehistoric Aquarium Adventure,” featuring a cast of large-scale underwater creatures brought to life through the magic of puppetry and high-tech theatrical design. And  “Showtime with Shakespeare,” a hip-hop themed musical adapted from author Mary Pope Osborne’s Magic Tree House series book “Stage Fright on a Summer Night,” will make its Penn State debut on Nov. 3.

Tickets will be available online, by phone at 1-800-ARTS-TIX and in person at Eisenhower Auditorium, the Bryce Jordan Center and the Penn State Downtown Theatre Center.

For detailed info about each event, visit

2019-20 Center for the Performing Arts Season

(Performances at Eisenhower Auditorium unless noted)


Emmet Cohen Trio and Houston Person

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12 (Schwab Auditorium) 


Imani Winds and Catalyst Quartet

“(Im)migration: Music of Change”

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18 (Schwab) 


“It’s All About Love”

Starring Maceo Parker and featuring the Maceo Parker Big Band

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 26 


Mexico Beyond Mariachi presents “Sugar Skull! A Dia de los Muertos Musical Adventure”

4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 29 

“The Book of Mormon”

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 8

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 9

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10

7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11

2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12

2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13


Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ensemble

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17 (Schwab)


“Harlem 100: Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Harlem Renaissance”

featuring Mwenso and The Shakes with special guests Brianna Thomas, Michela Marino Lerman and Vuyo Sotashe

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22 


“A Bronx Tale”

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30


“Showtime with Shakespeare,” A New Hip-Hop Musical

4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 3


Silkroad Ensemble

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5


Dance Theatre of Harlem

50th Anniversary Tour

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12 


“An Evening with Itzhak Perlman”

Rohan De Silva, pianist

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14



7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 19


“Humans” by Circa

Created by Yaron Lifschitz and the Circa Ensemble

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 21


“Jersey Boys”

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 28


Step Afrika!


7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31


Lizz Wright

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, February 5 (Schwab)


Direct from Kiev, The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine

Volodymyr Sirenko, artistic director and chief conductor

Volodymyr Vynnytsky, pianist

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11 


Kronos Quartet and Mahsa Vahdat

“Music for Change: The Banned Countries”

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 18


Erth’s “Prehistoric Aquarium Adventure”

The Mystery of the Dinosaurs of the Deep

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 20


Apollo’s Fire

The Cleveland Baroque Orchestra

“Vivaldi’s Four Seasons Rediscovered”

Jeannette Sorrell, conductor

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27 (Schwab)


Bizet’s opera “Carmen,”

Presented by Penn State’s College of Arts and Architecture, School of Music, and Center for the Performing Arts 

7:30 p.m. Friday, March 27

2 p.m. Sunday, March 29 


Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis

“Masters of Form: From Mingus to Monk”

7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 2


“Night Train 57”

A Sensory-Friendly Comic Folk Opera

Featuring Dan Zanes, Claudia Eliaza and Yuriana Sobrino 

4 p.m. Sunday, April 5 


Calidore String Quartet

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 7 (Schwab)


“The Color Purple”

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 15


Hong Kong Ballet

“Alice (in Wonderland)”

by Septime Webre, artistic director

7:30 p.m. Friday, April 24


Geoff Rushton is managing editor for Contact him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter at @geoffrushton.
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