All that jazz: Performing arts bop into spring season

All that jazz: Performing arts bop into spring season


The College of Performing Arts continues the 22|23 series this spring, packed with performances from talented faculty and students, guest artists and special engagements from GRAMMY winning performers. 

Here’s a look at what to expect: 

The new year is off to an energetic start with the Department of Music’s “Festival of Brass.” Beginning January 18, the series includes Faculty Spotlights from the Brass faculty led by Dr. Bryan Appleby-Winberg, performances from visiting artists Jonah Zimmerman and Dr. James Gourlay, and culminates with the Mid-Atlantic Brass Band Festival from February 10 through 12. The energy continues with the 53rd Rowan Jazz Festival on February 10, led by Denis DiBlasio and a special engagement from the Rowan Symphony Orchestra and ARTolerance, an organization dedicated to using art to create common ground between people of different backgrounds. The College’s student ensembles, choirs, bands, and orchestras along with the Spring Opera la Bohemme round out the spring music calendar. 

In February, the College will host three special engagements as part of the Marie Rader Presenting Series. First, renowned singer and jazz guitarist John Pizzarelli performs with his trio on February 3, followed by a big band set in collaboration with the Rowan Jazz Band. On the 15th, Flutronix and Third Coast Percussion, two cutting-edge contemporary ensembles, come together on the Pfleeger stage to perform their collaboratively composed Rubix, in addition to solo sets by each. Then in April, a family-friendly, 2 shows-for-1-ticket program will offer majestic snapshots of living in a changing natural environment. Hosted by NYC-based stage and screen actor Matt Dallal, the program will feature Phantom Limb Company’s The Puppet Cycle: Small World Stories, a mobile carbon-neutral puppet theatre with original plays, and author/composer Dan Brown’s Wild Symphony-- a collection of musical portraits, poems, and illustrations drawn from the animal kingdom.

“Part of what makes the Marie Rader Series unique is how it is integrated with both academic and off-campus communities alike,” said Debbie Shapiro, Artistic Director. In addition to the Rowan Jazz Band’s work with John Pizzarelli and the Wind Ensemble’s interpretation of the Wild Symphony score, Third Coast Percussion will be visiting Marlton’s Rice Elementary School for an interactive assembly, illustrating the Series’ commitment to bringing exceptional programming to the campus community and beyond.

The Department of Theatre & Dance continues its MainStage productions in February with Equus, the 1975 Tony award-winning play by Peter Shaffer. The play follows the story of psychiatrist Dr. Martin Dysart and explores how obsession and shame can bridle the never-ending search for purpose and meaning. And in April, the department performs Head Over Heels, a musical that uses songs by pop group The Go-Go’s to tell the story of Sir Philly Sidney’s poem The Arcadia. Also in April, the Theatre & Dance faculty perform with their students in the annual Choreography Showcase, featuring continued explorations from the Fall’s Exo-skin-esphere, in collaboration with Rowan Engineering. 

“This spring promises to be exciting with a full schedule of impactful student performances mixed with inspiring visits from world-class guest artists,” said Rick Dammers, Dean of the College of Performing Arts. 

For a full list of performances and events, and to reserve tickets, visit

Programs are made possible by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. The Marie Rader Presenting Series is made possible in part through generous support from the Henry M. Rowan Foundation via the Marie Rader Memorial Fund. The engagement of Third Coast Percussion is made possible in part through the ArtsCONNECT program of Mid Atlantic Arts with support from the National Endowment for the Arts.