Check out the Season Brochure for 17-18 and find out what’s coming to the Bankhead Theater. You’ll also get an overview of everything else we do … from visual arts at the Bothwell Arts Center to educational programs and cultural events.
Top: Indigo Girls, Rita Rudner, OK GO, Manhattan Transfer.
Bottom: R. Carlos Nakai, Lisa Loeb, Catapult, Moscow Festival Ballet, Tom Rush
Watch a preview video here or see a list of the entire season here!
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The 2017-2018 season at the Bankhead Theater has just been announced! Located at the heart of downtown Livermore, the Bankhead will welcome a range of artists from all musical genres, as well as comedy, dance, theater, and other performing arts. The season officially begins on Saturday evening, September 9, 2017 at the Brilliance at the Bankhead Gala featuring Grammy Award-winning folk rock duo the Indigo Girls. Other notable highlights among the three dozen events scheduled through June 2018 are viral-video pop hit makers OK GO, the smooth harmony vocals of the Manhattan Transfer, and comedian Vicki Lawrence, known for her character “Mama” from The Carol Burnett Show.
Folk balladeer Tom Rush makes a welcome return, as does Marc Cohn touring with The Blind Boys of Alabama. Among artists making their first appearance at the Bankhead will be Los Lonely Boys, Lisa Loeb, and the Irish group Danù in a special St. Patrick’s Day concert.
According to Executive Director Scott Kenison, the programming team focused on balance. “We’re always happy to welcome big name artists and returning favorites, shows we know will meet a receptive audience, but it’s also important to bring artists such as African Guitar Summit and R. Carlos Nakai, William Eaton and Will Clipman to Livermore,” he said. “It’s particularly exciting to be able to bring to the Bankhead entertainers such as OK GO or Catapult that people may have only seen on television or online. These shows, as well as the return of Olate Dogs, DLux Puppets and others, appeal to all ages. With our student ticket price of just $17, we encourage families to come out and enjoy a show together,” he added.
This season is particularly rich with comedic talent. In addition to Vicki Lawrence and Mama, Rita Rudner and Dave Coulier will keep audiences laughing with their solo stand-up routines. The San Francisco Comedy Competition, Second City and Capitol Steps all return to the Bankhead and the Reduced Shakespeare Co. will present “William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play,” a hilarious mash-up of characters, famous lines, and unexpected plot twists.
The Bankhead stage is not just for professionals. Next May, local celebrities will spend a week practicing with a professional ballroom dance partner before demonstrating their newfound skills in pursuit of the Mirrorball Trophy in “Dancing with the Tri-Valley Stars.” The evening includes a professional dance showcase by national champions, The Utah Ballroom Dance Company.
In addition to LVPAC Presents shows, the Bankhead Resident Companies, including Del Valle Fine Arts, Livermore-Amador Symphony, Livermore Valley Opera, Pacific Chamber Orchestra, Rae Dorough Speakers Series, Tri-Valley Repertory Theatre, and Valley Dance Theatre, offer nearly 50 performances and events of their own during the season.
The 2017-2018 Season at the Bankhead follows the previously announced Summer Series which begins in July with the already sold out evening with Paula Poundstone on July 7th. Six other shows including The Lettermen, Robert Cray, New Christy Minstrels, Derik Nelson and Family, JD Souther and Keiko Matsui run through August.
The more the merrier! With such a great line-up,
you’ll want to join us at the Bankhead often.
Buy tickets for any FIVE LVPAC Presents shows
at the same time and receive a 10% discount!*
*Members receive 15%. If you’re not a member consider joining today! Memberships start at just $125. In addition to supporting the arts, you’ll be among the first to hear about any new shows and you’ll receive 10% off single tickets for LVPAC Presents shows all year long. Resident Company and Rental Company shows do not qualify. Other benefits are available at higher levels.
Since 1970, the country music group Asleep at the Wheel has filled one venue after the next. The legendary kings of western swing continue in their quest to keep western swing music alive and kicking. Fans of the group appreciate the fun, toe-tapping music and rich harmonies that set Asleep at the Wheel apart from other groups. Read on to learn more about this iconic group and how you can see Asleep at the Wheel in person soon.
Frontman Ray Benson and Lucky Oceans got things started as the two opened for Alice Cooper and Hot Tuna in Washington, D.C. In 1973, Asleep at the Wheel released their first album called Comin’ Right At Ya. The group’s upward trend continued the next handful of years with singles including “Don’t Ask Me Why,” “Bump, Bounce, Boogie,” “Nothin’ Takes the Place of You” and others. Along their journey, Asleep at the Wheel has earned nine Grammy awards from more than 25 albums. Benson refers to western swing as “jazz with a cowboy hat,” a musical melting pot from fiddle tunes and country bluegrass, to blues and big band.
In 2007, the group was recognized by the Austin Chronicle as the Band of the Year, Best Country Band, and was consequently elected into their Hall of Fame.
More About Benson
Throughout the group’s history, Benson has remained the integral cog. In 2002, Benson was elected into the Austin Music Hall of Fame, was given the Texas Music Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996, and was recognized as an Outstanding Producer by the National Academy of Recording Arts in 1988. Not to mention, Benson has also been given numerous Citations of Achievement by Broadcast Music, Inc. It’s no wonder why Benson and Asleep at the Wheel remain some of the strongest, most recognizable names in country music.
What others are saying
“The finest Western swing band in existence today.” – Country Music
“The wheel just keeps rollin’ along with a steady eye and a keen sense of swing.” – Dallas Morning News
Have you ever been to the Bankhead Theater in Livermore? At LVPAC, our mission is to offer a variety of performing arts opportunities and experiences to engage our diverse communities. Whether that’s symphony, ballet performances, opera shows, or upcoming concerts, the Bankhead is the premier choice. We are thrilled that the Bankhead continues to present a fun, rich environment for all those involved. Our performing arts center also strives to keep performances affordable. For example, nearly all LVPAC Presents events are priced at just $16. Come and see Asleep at the Wheel for yourself and take in the intimate setting and perfect acoustics found only at the Bankhead. Together with the Bothwell Arts Center and Downtown Art Studios, it’s easy to see what makes LVPAC the heart of a vibrant cultural arts community.
Asleep at the Wheel makes its appearance at the Bankhead Theater Friday, June 2 at 8 p.m. Tickets for the event range from $35 – $60. Be sure to call or visit the box office
Are you ready for the chance to see the stars of Broadway’s smash hits Jersey Boys and Motown: The Musical live? You will have the opportunity when The Doo Wop Project comes to town for an appearance at the Livermore Valley Performing Center. Tracing the evolution of the doo wop sound from classic street corner harmonies to the top of the radio charts, The Doo Wop Project continues to be a favorite across all ages. Their authenticity of sound and vocal excellence recreate and reimagine favorite melodies of the era, as well as doo wop-inspired renditions of contemporary songs. The power and charisma of these gifted young performers of The Doo Wop Project bring the energy and magic of doo wop to a whole generation of fans.
Throughout the show, DWP takes audiences on a breathtaking journey from foundational tunes of the Crests, Belmonts, and Flamingos through influences on the sounds of Smokey Robinson, the Temptations, and the Four Seasons on through the likes of Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, and Jason Mraz. Without a doubt, DWP uses their one-of-a-kind sound and vocal excellence to recreate and reimagine some of the greatest music in American rock and pop history.
- Dominic Nolfi – Dominic is a founding member of DWP and currently performs on Broadway in A Bronx Tale – The Musical. He’s also performed in both of the World Premiere productions of A Bronx Tale and Jersey Boys at the Paper Mill Playhouse and La Jolla Playhouse.
- Charl – He was recently nominated for a 2013 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical on Broadway. Charl is also featured on the Grammy Nominated Original Broadway Cast recording. You may have recognized Charl in Madam Secretary, Britain’s Got Talent, America’s Got Talent and recent Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parades.
- Fischer – At 5-foot-6, he boasts a tenor voice and falsetto range. He made his Broadway debut on his 22nd birthday in the role of Joe Pesci in Jersey Boys. Similar to Charl, Fischer is no stranger to TV appearance, as he’s been a part of the 2009 Tony Awards, several sports for 60 Second Sitcoms, and more.
- Dominic Scaglione Jr. – He was most recently seen in the role of Frankie Valli on Broadway. He holds the distinct honor of being personally asked by Valli to sing at his NJ Hall of Fame induction. In his earlier performing days, Dominic toured with acts including Christina Aguilera, Destiny’s Child, Beyonce, and Boyz 2 Men.
- Dwayne Cooper – The South Carolina native began his singing days with a Christian a cappella group called “The Cunningham Singers.” Dwayne is often referred to as a “triple threat” in that he’s reminiscent of the great Sammy Davis Jr. and Barry White. Dwayne has performed in the Broadways casts of Motown, Hairspray, and several national tours of Smokey Joe’s Cafe and Showboat.
DWP is set to make its appearance at the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center Sunday, June 11 at 3 p.m. The production will be held at the Bankhead Theater, with ticket prices ranging from $35 to $60.
You won’t want to miss this performance, so be sure to get your tickets early.
United States Air Force fighter pilot Brian Shul’s aircraft was shot down during the Vietnam War. Unable to eject, he sustained major injuries and barely survived. After extensive surgeries, Shul miraculously returned to active duty and was later selected to pilot the SR-71 Blackbird spy plane, the fastest aircraft ever built! To this day, Shul remains the only SR-71 pilot to fly three missions on three consecutive days. Now retired, he continues to share his breathtaking airborne images and his inspiring comeback story filled with an unforgettable message of achieving triumph over tragedy.
Get to Know Brian Shul
After graduating from East Carolina in 1970 with a history degree, Shul joined the Air Force. Following his crash landing into the jungle near the Cambodian border, he was forced to crawl from the burning wreckage before being found by a Special Forces team. He was not expected to live. Shul spent the next year in the operating room 15 times, during which he was told he’d never fly again and was just lucky to be alive. But Shul persisted and underwent physical therapy, enabling him to pass a flight physical and return to active flying duty.
Shul more than took advantage of his incredible road back. He flew the A-7D, was an airshow demonstration pilot in the A-10, was a TOPGUN instructor, and ended his career with a selection to pilot the Top Secret SR-71 Blackbird spy plane. Shul was the pilot who provided key reconnaissance photos to President Reagan during the Libyan Crisis in 1986 when he became the only SR-71 pilot in history to fly three mission on three consecutive days. A Spirit of Freedom Award winner and recipient of the prestigious Crystal Eagle Award, Shul has been designated one of the Top Five Most Notable SR-71 pilots ever to fly that plane and was the first to write about his experiences. Today, “Sled Driver: Flying the World’s Fastest Jet” is the single most popular book on the Blackbird worldwide.
Now retired, Shul is an accomplished author, speaker, and photographer whose remarkable comeback story and breathtaking images offer an inspiring message of triumph over tragedy in an unforgettable way. In “Spy Pilot Chronicles,” Shul shows how, even in the face of struggle, success on a grand scale can be achieved through a positive attitude and maintaining a healthy sense of humor.
The Bankhead Theater continues to bring speakers, artists, and audiences together for incredible performances at the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center. Our team at LVPAC knows that exposure to the performing arts has the potential to transform lives in a variety of ways. That’s why we do whatever possible to ensure that folks of all ages can enjoy our performances. Not to mention, we offer plenty of family-friendly shows. From live music and entertainment shows to musical shows and theater, see what makes the Bankhead Theater a truly one-of-a-kind experience for all those involved.
USAF Blackbird Pilot Brian Shul makes his appearance Tuesday, May 23 at 7:30 p.m. For just $20, you can get to know him and learn about his amazing story. Tickets for students or active military personnel are just $16 at the box office or by phone.
“Every piece of art is a step to the next. I almost never sit down with an idea and write consciously, unless I’m writing a song for someone else. I start with a lyric or rhythm that sounds cool to me. I don’t try to draw linear connections.”
Read the rest of Lou Fancher’s fascinating interview in the East Bay Times with singer, songwriter, actress, writer and sheer force of nature Storm Large before she and her band Le Bonheur take the stage at the Bankhead Theater on Friday evening, May 19. More information and great tickets available here.
Take a look inside a digital copy of the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center 2016 Annual Report and find out how LVPAC is working to amplify the arts in our community by supporting artists in a variety of ways. From presenting world renowned artists and curated art exhibits, to supporting talented young jazz all stars and offering visual art classes for all ages, LVPAC helps channel creativity in every direction, serving as a true heart of the arts in downtown Livermore.
Since the passing of Gene Autry and Roy Rogers, Riders in the Sky have kept the musical flame of Western music alive. Riders in the Sky not only retain the integrity of the genre, but they also brand it with their own wacky humor and unique Western wit. Their hit, “Woody’s Round-Up” from Disney’s Toy Story 2, made Riders in the Sky the lone western band to win a Grammy Award.
The two-time Grammy Award winners are set to make their highly anticipated appearance in the Bankhead Theater at the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center. See below to learn more about Riders in the Sky and their illustrious career.
Riders in the Sky
It’s incredible to think that a wildlife manager – galvanizer – Life Scout, an English major – shot putter – Bluegrass Boy, and a Polka Hall of Famer would come together to eventually become “America’s Favorite Cowboys.” The Riders in the Sky first performed nearly 40 years ago in Nashville’s “Phranks & Steins.” Since then, they’ve gone on to make over 6,000 concert appearances in all 50 states, as well as 10 countries. In 1982, Riders in the Sky became the first exclusively Western music group to join the Grand Ole Opry, the longest running radio show in history.
They’ve been mainstays on television, including TNN and a Saturday morning series on CBS. The Riders in the Sky have even shared the screen with the like of Daffy Duck on Cartoon Network and Stanley on Disney Channel. As previously mentioned, though, the Riders in the Sky continue to be most recognized for their work in Toy Story 2. That set the stage for following year, in which they notched a second Grammy for “Monsters Inc. – Scream Factory Favorites.”
So what exactly has made Riders in the Sky a hit across multiple generations? The group has an uncanny way to appeal to a diverse and broad-based cross section of the public. They can amuse a theatre full of children, as well as an audience full of servicemen. Riders have routinely performed at the White House for both Democratic and Republican administrations and at Major League Baseball’s winter meetings.
The Riders in the Sky are in the Western Music Association’s Hall of Fame, the Country Music Foundation’s Walkway of Stars, and of course, the Walk of Western Stars. They’ve been named “Entertainer of the Year” seven times and won “Traditional Group of the Year” and “Traditional Album of the Year” multiple times.
What others are saying
“In just a few seconds of sweet Western harmony, the Riders can take you back to a time and place where you’ve never spent a moment.” – The Detroit News
“Riders in the Sky are carrying the torch, keeping alive the nearly forgotten campfire songs of the cowboys and the wonderful old songs that celebrated the spirit of the old Wild West.” – Times-Union, Albany
“A mix of both classic and original western songs, smooth harmony, hot locks, and slapstick comedy.” – Grand Rapids Herald
The Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center is set to welcome the Riders in the Sky for a performance Friday, April 28 at 8 p.m in the Bankhead Theater. Ticket prices range from $50 to $80 and are expected to go fast, so be sure to books yours today. For ticket booking, please call or visit the box office and ensure your spot for what’s expected to be a fun, memorable evening.
Don’t forget that LVPAC is your home for upcoming concerts, symphony, ballet performances, opera shows, and so much more. Contact us now for ticket information or other general information regarding our venues.
For 25 years, Lucie Arnaz has appeared on stage, in films, and as a solo artist in theaters and nightclubs worldwide. Lucie, the daughter of television royalty Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, has since created her own fiery, explosive, and heartfelt musical tribute to the rhythm of her roots. Audience members simply love her show, which mixes sophistication with sassy spice as she sets songs from Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, and Johnny Mercer alongside tunes by Agustin Lara, Rafael Hernandez, and Margarita Lecuona.
The Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center is ecstatic to welcome such an icon to the Bankhead Theater. Keep reading to learn more about Lucie, as well as additional show information.
Get to Know Lucie Arnaz
Lucie began her career in a recurring role on TV’s The Lucy Show opposite her mother. At age 15, she became a regular on Here’s Lucy, while later starring in The Lucie Arnaz Show and Sons & Daughters on CBS.
Soon after, Lucie took to the big screen as she received a Golden Globe nomination for her role alongside Neil Diamond in The Jazz Singer. She also starred in roles opposite Tom Laughlin, Ken Howard, Freddie Prinze, Jr., and Henry Winkler. Lucie even co-starred with the likes of Richard Roundtree, Robert Loggia, and bob Forster in Wild Seven.
The incredibly talented Lucie played a handful of the best women’s roles in theatre, including Sally Bowles in Cabaret and Daisy Mae in L’il Abner. During one summer, Lucie earned the coveted role of Sonia Wolsk in the popular musical They’re Playing Our Song, for which she received The Los Angeles Drama Critic’s Circle, Theatre World, and outer Critic’s Circle Awards. It was there in 1979 where Lucie met her husband, Laurence Luckinbill.
The two married in 1990 and appeared together in Educating Rita, I Do, I Do, and They’re Playing Our Song. Lucie Lucie soon returned to Broadway where she continued to receive rave reviews, particularly for her role of Bella in Lost in Yonkers by Neil Simon. In 2001, Lucie and her brother produced the I Love Lucy 50th Anniversary Special, which aired on CBS and received an Emmy nomination. Five years later, Lucie opened in Sonia Flew, where she co-starred with her youngest child.
Over the years, Lucie has brought down the house just about everywhere you can imagine across the U.S. and Europe. From Las Vegas to Atlantic City, she has sold out a wide variety of venues, such as the world famous Birdland Jazz Club.
In 2010, Lucie served as the Artistic Director for Babalu! – a celebration of the Latin music craze of the ‘40s and ‘50s as seen through the music of the Desi Arnaz Orchestra. The group opened the 40th season of the Lyric and Lyricist Series in New York City. As recently as two years ago, Lucie played Berthe in the national touring company of “Pippin,” where she performed upside down nightly in a trapeze act alongside original cast member John Rubenstein.
What others are saying
“She sings like a dream. Her voice, with its muted trumpet tones and charming trill, is a remarkable instrument.” – New York Post
The 507-seat Bankhead Theater continues to bring artists and audiences together for incredible performances. Once you step into the venue and take in a show at the Bankhead, it doesn’t take long to enjoy the perfect acoustics. Our team at LVPAC knows that exposure to the performing arts has the potential to transform lives. That’s why we do whatever possible to ensure that everyone can enjoy our performances. Not to mention, we offer plenty of family-friendly shows, while nearly all LVPAC Presents events are priced at just $16. From live music and entertainment shows to musical shows and theater, see what makes the Bankhead a true one-of-a-kind experience.
Lucie Arnaz makes her appearance at the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center on Saturday, April 29 at 8 p.m. Ticket prices for the event range from $80 to $100 at the Bankhead Theater. Be sure to call or visit the box office to book your tickets. As with all of our events, LVPAC is proud to offer student and active military prices.
Judgment at Nuremberg, based on one of the most popular courtroom dramas of the last century, became an Academy Award-winning film and stage play. The piece has an uncanny ability to leave an audience both unsettled and wanting to know more. In Judgment at Nuremberg, the characters play out a high-stakes game against the backdrop of a looming Cold War, shifting political alliances, as well as fresh memories from World War II.
L.A. Theatre Works returns to the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center and Bankhead Theater with the production of Judgment at Nuremberg. The Nuremberg Trials continue to be remembered as a major turning point in our global narrative. These particular events forever impacted our notions of judgment, retribution, and vengeance.
See below for a snippet of the Q&A segment that can be found in our theater program the night of the event. It features producing director Susan Albert Loewenberg and some of her insights into the historical backdrop of the story.
Q: The play is based on the war tribunals after WWII. It was a multi-country effort (led by the United States) to hold Nazi war criminals accountable for their crimes against humanity. Does the play demonstrate, and at what cost, that justice was served?
SL: The play does not take a stance on history, nor does it come to a conclusion on whether justice was served. Rather, it presents a moral argument—what is “justice” for something as horrific as the Holocaust? The play demonstrates what it takes to have that conversation, and how important it is to have it. The play asks, “What is justice in today’s global narrative?” It also explores whether an independent judiciary can be truly independent in a politically-charged environment.
Q: The play explores the aftermath of one of the darkest times in world history. What makes this piece, set more than half a century ago, relevant today? What lessons were learned or ignored?
SL: The Nuremberg trials forever impacted our notions of jurisprudence, retribution, and vengeance, and there seems to be no more timely moment for them to be discussed than right now. In today’s world, how can we possibly talk about what is “fair” or “right” when grappling with genocide, police brutality, and acts of terrorism? In order to maintain stability, rules must be upheld, and retributions inflicted—the trials taught us this. In the face of unspeakable horror, what is good and what is bad becomes blurred. The play defines the role of judgment and personal responsibility in a world where “right” and “wrong” have lost definite meaning.
Judgment at Nuremberg will take place Wednesday, April 19 at 7:30 p.m. in the Bankhead Theater. Ticket prices for the event range from $35 to $60. Remember that our performing arts center offers student and active military prices. Please give us a call or visit the box office to book your tickets.
From stage plays and live music to musical shows and theater, see why LVPAC is the premier spot for performing arts enthusiasts. Hurry and book your tickets to Judgment at Nuremberg, as they’re selling fast!