SANTA MONICA, Calif., April 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- After raising L.A.'s cultural pulse with risky new productions attracting critical acclaim, today The Eli & Edythe Broad Stage at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center unveils its vision for the future and announces an electric 5th Anniversary Season beginning on September 1, 2012 with the phenomenal Brazilian jazz singer Luciana Souza. Highlights of the expanded season include world premieres from today's best and most relevant companies and artists in dance, theater, and music from around the world; artistic partnerships with London's Menier Chocolate Factory, the Los Angeles Opera, and Shakespeare's Globe Theatre; the 4th Annual Westside Jazz Experience featuring legends and stars such as Pat Metheny, Rickie Lee Jones, and the Fabulous Thunderbirds; a return of popular family programs including a gravity-defying hit from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival; and a who's-who of artists direct from Brazil, Cuba, Europe, and across the U.S.
The Broad Stage and LA Opera will co-produce the world premiere of Dulce Rosa, a fully-staged new opera by composer Lee Holdridge and librettist Richard Sparks, based on the Isabel Allende short story Una Venganza ("An Act of Vengeance"). Placido Domingo, General Director of LA Opera, will conduct a production featuring the LA Opera Chorus and Orchestra. The title role will be performed by Uruguayan soprano Maria Eugenia Antunez. This is the inaugural project of the LA Opera Off Grand series, devoted to new and eclectic repertoire presented in venues away from the company's home at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. "Lee Holdridge and Richard Sparks have worked on several successful projects for LA Opera in the past," said Mr. Domingo. "Their newest opera gives us the perfect opportunity to inaugurate the LA Opera Off Grand series. I look forward to collaborating with them and with The Broad Stage as we launch this exciting new venture." The Broad Stage and the LA Opera will present six performances May 19 - June 9, 2013.
Details attached on the 5th Anniversary Season productions, concerts, performance series, and special events are only part of the celebration. Building upon The Broad Stage's early artistic and popular success, Santa Monica College (SMC) will also break ground on a new building that will include a Music Hall, announced Dr. Chui L. Tsang, Superintendent and President of Santa Monica College. "With resources at a premium, we believe the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center is a powerful investment that will pay dividends for generations to come," declares Tsang. "We strongly believe in the future of our students, our arts education, and the shared cultural life of our community by helping make that future possible."
The new East Wing will include a 165-seat Music Hall and will join the 499-seat Broad Stage and the 99-seat Edye Second Space, a smaller black box theater, at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center and will play a central part in Artistic Director Dale Franzen's vision for the next five years.
"What's most exciting about this third space is that it will help us expand the scope of our programming and The Broad Stage reputation as a unique cultural landmark that is beautiful, intimate and state-of-the-art," says Franzen, "It is also central to our vision for the next five years to establish The Broad Stage at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center as the West Coast home for relevant, vanguard work created in London, Latin America, New York, Edinburgh, and other cultural hot spots around the globe, including our very own artistic capital of Los Angeles. We set out to become the place where our community could experience the world up the street. Our reach is international but our heartbeat is local."
"The way we will build our future is by taking risks on the future," continues Franzen. "People will come to know The Broad Stage as the place to see world-renowned artists departing from the expected, to discover emerging artists re-imagining their disciplines, and to experience classic works interpreted in new ways. By presenting the most relevant artists and productions that are defining our cultural moment and creating the next, I believe we can fulfill our founding promises to artists and audiences alike."
The new East Wing Expansion Building is designed by the architectural firm DLR Group WWCOT. It is a 2-story building, located to the east of the Broad Stage and connected to the existing Madison Building. The new East Wing is comprised of several music instruction spaces that include a Music Hall, a Music Lab, and a Rehearsal Space, along with supporting storage areas. The Music Hall can seat up to 165 people indoors and can be opened to the plaza to seat as many as 350 people for special events. As part of the state-of-the-art modernist Santa Monica College Performing Arts complex, it is expected to break ground in 2013. The project is funded by Santa Monica College through Measure AA, a capital facilities bond measure approved by Santa Monica and Malibu voters in November 2008.
"The growth of the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center is a testament to the vitality of Los Angeles' artists and audiences," says Austin Beutner, chairman of The Broad Stage Board of Directors. "The Broad Stage plays an important role in bringing our community together."
"The Broad Stage enters its fifth season having successfully attracted new and bigger audiences during a time when more established institutions, frankly, have struggled," explains Dale Franzen, "We accomplished this thanks to an artistic vision that attracted some of the worlds undisputed cultural avatars, like dancer-choreographers Savion Glover, Mikhail Baryshnikov, and Bill T. Jones; theater artists Dustin Hoffman, Peter Brook, F. Murray Abraham, and Anna Deavere Smith; musicians Joshua Bell and Bradford Marsalis; and singers Esperanza Spalding, Plácido Domingo, and Marilyn Horne. Each of these artists showed us something different and surprising in their Broad Stage performances. When we opened in 2008 we said this was the kind of theater artists would love to play in and, happily, they seem to feel welcome. We've established a reputation as 'the artists' sandbox,' a place for creative play."
To experience The Broad Stage's 2012-2013 5th Anniversary Season, showcasing the full spectrum of performing arts go to www.TheBroadStage.com or call 310.434.3200. Packages for the 2012/13 season go on sale June 25, 2012 and single tickets go on sale July 30, 2012.
Photos of all Broad Stage productions are available for use by certified members of the press. To request photos please contact the Broad Stage Press Office at VanessaButlerPR@gmail.com and we will be glad to assist you.
Vanessa Butler, 213.446.0774
Amy West, 310.709.4743
SOURCE The Broad Stage