The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts presents two very different works from two of the finest ballet companies in the western half of North America-Ballet West’s beautifully traditional production of Giselle, and Ballet BC’s stunningly reimagined take on the timeless tale of Romeo + Juliet.
Giselle is one of the most beloved and enduring cornerstones of classical ballet. Ballet West’s sumptuous production is conceived by Adam Sklute, the company’s artistic director, with choreography by Sklute after Jean Coralli and Julles Perrot. It will have a single performance on Tuesday, February 4 at 8:00pm. With a music score composed by Adolphe Adam, Ballet West’s Giselle is a lavish production, complete with a cast of more than 55 dancers, live animals, and opulent sets and costumes.
The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts welcomes the legendary Ballet Folclórico Nacional de México de Silvia Lozano on Thursday, January 30, 2020 at 8pm. Acclaimed as one of the most exciting groups presenting authentic regional dances of Mexico, Ballet Folclórico Nacional is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the culture of Mexico.
Single tickets for Ballet Folclórico Nacional de México de Silvia Lozano start at $36 and are currently on sale at The Soraya, (818) 677-3000 and at TheSoraya.org.
As part of The Soraya’s Family Fun series, The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts presents Hotel – the fifteenth show by the acclaimed Canadian troupe Cirque Éloize, now celebrating its 25th anniversary - for two performances only, January 25 and 26, 2020. Like Saloon presented last year at The Soraya, audiences will once again be amazed by and delight in powerful acrobatic feats in a light comic show, this time with a classic hotel setting.
Tickets for Cirque Éloize, Hotel start at $36 and are currently on sale at The Soraya, (818) 677-3000 and at TheSoraya.org.
The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts continues its Beethoven 250th celebration as it presents the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra featuring Pinchas Zukerman as Principal Guest Conductor and Violin Soloist on Friday, January 24, 2020 at 8pm.
With a celebrated career encompassing five decades, Pinchas Zukerman is one of the world’s most sought-after and versatile musicians, as a violin and viola soloist, conductor, and chamber musician. The 2019–20 season marks Zukerman’s eleventh as Principal Guest Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. His extensive discography includes more than 100 titles, for which he earned two GRAMMY® Awards and 21 nominations.
Director Ava DuVernay's Selma tells the story of the events leading up to Dr. Martin Luther King’s landmark 1965 march for voting rights – an event that forever changed history. In honor of Dr. King’s birthday and Black History Month, The Soraya will screen Selma on the large screen – with its score performed live by its composer, acclaimed jazz pianist Jason Moran – artistic director of Jazz at the Kennedy Center – with the New West Symphony conducted by Cheche Alara on Saturday, February 1 at 8:00pm at The Soraya.
Film Music Magazine noted about Moran’s astonishing first feature film score, “It’s an unstoppable sense of history-making that could perhaps only be captured by a musician so steeped in jazz and its cultural heritage.”
The Soraya’s intimate onstage Jazz Club welcomes GRAMMY® Winner Luciana Souza for two nights performing songs from her critically acclaimed album, The Book of Longing. Inspired by the poetry of Leonard Cohen, Brazilian-American vocal jazz veteran Souza explores the theme of saudade, or yearning, in this work. NPR music critic Michelle Mercer has said of Souza’s The Book of Longing, “[This is her] most graceful album…it’s one of her best yet.”
Luciana Souza along with special guest musicians Chico Pinheiro (bass) and Scott Colley (guitar), who accompanied Souza on the album, will perform both nights at 8pm in The Soraya’s intimate Onstage Jazz Club on Friday and Saturday, January 17 and 18. Tickets start at $44 and can be purchased at TheSoraya.org.
Voctave, the YouTube sensation with over 100 million views, will bring its popular holiday show to The Soraya on Sunday, December 15 at 3:00 pm. With dynamically rich harmonies and pitch-perfect melodies, Voctave’s The Spirit of the Season is a holiday treat for the entire family. The Soraya’s 2019 holiday programming also includes Aspen Sante Fe Ballet’s The Nutcracker on December 7 & 8 and Nochebuena featuring Eugenia León, Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles, and Mariachi Garibaldi de Jaime Cuéllar on December 14.
Aspen Santa Fe Ballet returns to The Soraya this holiday season with three performances of the classic ballet, The Nutcracker, on December 7 & 8. With Tchaikovsky's original music, this storybook production, choreographed by ASFB executive director Jean-Phillippe Malaty and artistic director Tom Mossbrucker, is set in the Victorian era, beginning with the resplendent party and concluding with the fantastical scenes in the second act centered around a bright and colorful carousel.
Aspen Santa Fe Ballet’s exquisite dancers perform the leading roles, showing off their classical training. Over 70 children from Los Angeles Youth Ballet and students from USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance will round out the cast. Adding to the excitement, the traditional Russian, Spanish, and Chinese pieces will feature performers from around the globe who bring their traditional and authentic dances. Almost 100 performers are on stage for this production.
(Los Angeles, CA) October 24, 2019 – The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) has been awarded the 2019 Ticketmaster Sustainability Award which was recently presented at the Ticketmaster Arts Summit. The Ticketmaster Award coincides with CSUN’s 11th annual Sustainability Day to be held on its campus this Thursday, October 24th from 9:30am to 4:45pm.
After four decades of world-wide success, including many award-winning recordings and newly commissioned works, the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio continues to dazzle audiences and critics alike with its performances. Now, America’s premier trio will celebrate Beethoven’s 250th anniversary with two nights at The Soraya performing several of the composer’s most beloved work as part of the intimate Onstage Sessions Chamber music series.
The Soraya’s intimate onstage Jazz Club returns for two special nights when the extraordinary Camila Meza takes to the stage performing with LA’s own wild Up, sitting in with The Nectar Orchestra. Downbeat Magazine said, “This triple threat from Santiago, Chile, had more to offer than just a beautiful voice, thoughtful lyrics and refreshing stage presence.”
Mandy Gonzalez will “take a break” from playing Angelica Schuyler in Hamilton on Broadway for a rare Southern-California appearance at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) on Saturday, October 26 at 8pm. Gonzalez will perform hits from Wicked, Hamilton, and more.
The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) presents internationally renowned flamenco dancer Juan Manuel Fernandez Montoya “Farruquito” for one night only on Saturday, November 9 at 8:00pm. Heir to one of the most revered Gypsy flamenco dynasties in Spain, The New York Times said he is the “greatest flamenco dancer of this new century … he is one of today’s superlative dance artists.”
Winner of six Grammy and three Latin Grammy Awards, Cuban pianist, composer and arranger, Chucho Valdés, is the most influential figure in modern Afro-Cuban jazz. Now, he will be performing tracks from his 2018 release Jazz Batá 2, inspired by his seminal record Jazz Batá, at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, October 19 at 8pm.
In the coming year, the classical music world celebrates the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven’s birth. The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts will explore the composer’s works, from his most iconic symphonies to the quieter piano solos with eight major performances slated throughout the 2019-20 Season. The Beethoven performances begin with Itzhak Perlman opening The Soraya season on Thursday, September 19 followed by pianist Jonathan Biss performing two evenings, Tuesday, October 15 and Wednesday, October 16.
Los Angeles’ own powerhouse vocalist Marisol Hernandez (aka La Marisoul) steps out on her own on Saturday, October 12 with a band of All-Stars to breathe new life into the most influential Mexican-American music of the past three generations. She promises tunes from Lalo Guerrero to Los Lobos, and she will bring special guest musicians from Los TexManiacs, California Feetwarmers, and more. The singer’s captivating voice has been heralded for her searing takes on love, loss, and heartbreak.
The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) presents OK Go’s The Live Video Tour on November 2 and 3. On The Live Video Tour the band points their beam of creativity at their stage show, once again ignoring boundaries and, in the process, inventing a new flavor of live entertainment.
The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) welcomes soul and blues legend Bettye LaVette to its stage for the first time on Sunday, October 6 at 7:00pm. With a career spanning over fifty years, LaVette gets inside a song and shapes and twists it to convey all the emotion that can be wrought from the lyric.
Consummate fan favorites, The Fab Faux will return to The Soraya for the fourth time to pay tribute to the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ landmark album, Abbey Road along with the Hogshead Horns and The Crème Tangerine Strings. The Fab Faux’s first set of the night will be a string of their fan favorites. The second set will be the phenomenal record, Abbey Road, in album order. Rolling Stone senior editor David Fricke calls The Fab Faux "The greatest Beatles cover band – without the wigs…The Faux invigorate the artistry of even the Beatles' most intricate studio masterpieces with top chops and Beatlemaniac glee."
The soul-stirring sound of tango in its most authentic form comes to The Soraya, brought directly to Los Angeles by Laura Escalada Piazzolla, the wife of the late maestro Astor Piazzolla, on Thursday, October 3 at 8pm. Formed by the Argentinian composer during the ’60s, the quintet caused a sensation with its provocative performances which elevated the earthy, sensual sound of tango to a sophisticated high art. After the composer’s death, the ensemble carried on the legacy with five virtuoso soloists capable of interpreting the vast body of work left by Piazzolla. The upcoming Revolucionario Tour, named after their recent album, will play throughout the Americas, Asia, and Europe.
Four symphonic orchestras, a major heritage museum and one of Los Angeles’ leading performing arts centers will join forces in 2020 for an ambitious collaborative initiative that will bring to life the sounds of music once lost.
Violins of Hope is an internationally renowned project created to celebrate the triumph of the human spirit. At the heart of Violins of Hope is a collection of over 60 stringed instruments rescued from the Holocaust and restored by second-generation violinmaker, Amnon Weinstein, and his son, Avshalom in their shop in Tel Aviv.
Now, this unique collection will come to Los Angeles for the first time March 22 to April 26, 2020 for a month-long series of concerts, exhibits, and student educational programming at several Los Angeles cultural institutions. Each concert in the Violins of Hope series will feature performers and soloists using instruments from the Weinstein’s collection. Artist in Residence and Northridge native Niv Ashkenazi, the only individual musician in North American entrusted with one of the collection’s rescued violins, will take the storied instruments on a tour to Los Angeles area schools.
Continuing its mission to bring the best of the world’s symphonic orchestras to Los Angeles, the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts will present the Mariinsky Orchestra under the baton of Grammy Award-winning Music Director Valery Gergiev on Thursday, October 25, 2018 at 8pm.
An American icon comes home. During the early years of his career, American composer, conductor and arranger Henry Mancini and his family lived not far from where California State University, Northridge campus now stands. On Saturday, October 13 at 8pm, Mancini’s music comes home to Northridge as The Soraya presents Moon River and the Music of Henry Mancini. Starring Monica Mancini with special guest three-time Tony-nominated Joshua Henry, Moon River and the Music of Henry Mancini features Gregg Field as Music Director and Chris Walden conducting the New West Symphony.
Sergio Mendes, “the man who put go-go boots on Brazilian music and brought it to the world,” (Billboard) will make a rare Los Angeles appearance when he brings his vivacious bossa nova to The Soraya on Saturday evening, October 27 at 8:00pm. A giant in his genre, Mendes has recorded more than 35 albums over a nearly six-decade career thus far. Joining him to open the evening will be French-Chilean singer Ana Tijoux who debuts her new project, Roja y Negro, new album of acoustic guitar celebrating Latin American folk music. With Mendes and Tijoux on stage, two generations of Latin American artists will share their passion both for traditional and popular music.
Soweto Gospel Choir, South Africa’s quintessential musical ensemble, brings a centenary celebration of the great freedom fighter and icon of reconciliation, Nelson Mandela, to The Soraya for Songs of the Free, a one-night only event on Sunday, Oct 7 at 7pm.
The Soweto Gospel Choir is a Grammy Award-winning group that has collaborated with some of the biggest names in music — including U2, John Legend, Peter Gabriel, and Diana Ross — and scored an Academy Award nomination for its work on the soundtrack to Pixar’s WALL-E. The 43-member choir, drawn from churches in and around Soweto, inspires audiences, sharing the joy of faith.
Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts Presents its Fall 2018 Season!
A household name since 1989 when she starred in Miss Saigon, Lea Salonga returns to The Soraya on Wednesday, May 22, 2019 after her sold-out debut in 2016. Recognized throughout the world for her powerful voice and perfect pitch, she will perform her Broadway hits, Disney film favorites, and an exciting array of pop and musical theatre standards as well as selections from her latest album.
Tony and Grammy Award winner Billy Porter does not hold back. The busy actor, composer, and director has also put out four solo albums. The most recent, Billy Porter Presents: The Soul of Richard Rodgers, features Porter’s new, soulful takes on classic Richard Rodgers songs, from "My Funny Valentine" to "Edelweiss." Porter will be bringing his album to life on the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts stage on Saturday, June 2 at 8pm.
"I like to think of [this album] as the Richard Rodgers version of the Hamilton Mixtapes," Porter said. "These are classic songs that everybody knows and loves, and I'm so excited for people to hear them in a brand-new way."
Continuing the momentum created with the current season launch of its Music Knows No Borders series, Executive Director Thor Steingraber unveils the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts’ 2018-19 Season, which features four world premieres, two American premieres, several of the world’s greatest orchestras, innovative jazz programs, two tributes to Hollywood legends, Broadway classics plus artists from 18 different nations who will appear on stage at The Soraya next season. New Subscription Series tickets will go on sale May 1, 2018.
David Sedaris, America’s best-selling literary funnyman, returns to the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) for an evening of his captivating and hilarious storytelling on Saturday, May 12 at 8pm.
Sedaris last appeared at The Soraya in 2015. In 2017, he released Theft By Finding, selections from his diaries, which the NPR calls, “Mesmerizing, like watching spinning chickens. Theft by Finding feels like watching a favorite play from behind the scenes, in the company of a friend who can identify what is absurd and heartbreaking and human about every person on stage.” On May 28 of this year, he will release Calypso, a collection of cheerfully misanthropic stories. Sedaris calls Calypso, “Beach reading for people who detest beaches, required reading for those who loathe small talk and love a good tumor joke.”
Aspen Santa Fe Ballet (ASFB) celebrates the third year of its four-year residency at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the performing arts (The Soraya) with a program of works that celebrates the company’s commitment to creating new contemporary dance on Saturday, April 7 at 8:00pm. ASFB will perform the new work Half/Cut/Split by world-renowned Finnish choreographer Jorma Elo, as well as Where We Left Off (2011) commissioned by ASFB and choreographed by Nicolo Fonte, and Return to a Strange Land (1975) from Jiří Kylián, Artistic Director of Nederlands Dans Theater with music by Leoš Janáček.
From Oklahoma! to The Sound of Music, American composer Richard Rodgers forever changed the face of Broadway musicals, giving them stories and making them oh, so hum-able. Now, The Soraya will present two special events that celebrate this legendary artist, South Pacific (April 13-15) and Tony Award winner Billy Porter’s The Soul of Richard Rodgers (June 2).
Academy Award-nominee, Angela Bassett will join Kathleen Battle as a guest narrator in Battle’s program Underground Railroad: A Spiritual Journey accompanied by pianist Joel Martin and the LA-based choir, The Albert McNeil Jubilee Singers at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) on Thursday, March 29 at 8:00pm.
Angela Bassett’s talent and abilities as an actress, director, and executive producer in both television and film have garnered well-deserved respect and acclaim from peers and fans; proving her to be one of the industry’s premier leading ladies. She currently stars in Marvel’s mega-hit movie Black Panther and Fox Television’s highly acclaimed new drama 9-1-1.
American soprano Kathleen Battle’s luminous voice has been called by The Washington Post “...without qualification, one of the very few most beautiful in the world.” Yet beyond the glory of her singing, in a career filled with countless accolades, honors and major milestones, what has perhaps distinguished her most is her almost magical ability to create an unwavering emotional bond between herself, her music and her audience. This performance will mark Ms. Battle’s debut at The Soraya.
On the Waterfront
Richard Kaufman Conducts New West Symphony performing Leonard Bernstein’s only film score
The timeless troupe celebrates 45 years Mummenschanz you & me
Kathleen Battle: Underground Railroad – A Spiritual Journey with Joel Martin, piano and LA’s Albert McNeil Jubilee Singers
KEIGWIN + COMPANY makes their Soraya debut on Saturday, February 3 with an all-Bernstein program, which includes two world premieres with live musical accompaniment: Three Plus One performed to Bernstein’s Piano Trio and Sonata to Bernstein’s Sonata for Clarinet and Piano, both commissioned by The Soraya.
The evening also features to works commissioned by the Kennedy Center: Episodes performed to Bernstein’s On the Town Suite and Waterfront performed to Bernstein’s On the Waterfront Suite.
Dublin Irish Dance performs Stepping Out, a high-energy extravaganza of sights and sounds, on Saturday, February 24 at 7:30pm at Segerstrom Center for the Arts and on Sunday, February 25 at 3:00pm at the Younes and Sarah Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya).
A company of world champion Irish step-dancers, along with an eight-member traditional Irish band and vocalist, take the audience on a journey, exploring the history and evolution of the Celtic cultural experience through favorite Irish melodies, traditional steps and Celtic instrumentals.
The Younes and Sarah Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) presents the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Thierry Fischer, Music Director of the Utah Symphony since 2009 and Principal Guest of the Seoul Philharmonic since January 2017 at the Great Hall on Friday, January 26 at 8:00pm.
The program, which spotlights Gautier Capuçon on cello, features Debussy’s Petite Suite, Haydn’s Cello Concerto No. 1 in C major and Stravinsky’s The Firebird. The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra announced in a statement last week that Fischer would replace the previously announced conductor Charles Dutoit.
The world’s first mariachi musical Cruzar la Cara de la Luna (To Cross the Face of the Moon) created by Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan’s Jose “Pepe” Martinez and Broadway’s Leonard Foglia, will have its Los Angeles premiere at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) on Friday, February 16 at 8:00pm, Saturday, February 17 at 8:00pm and Sunday, February 18 at 3:00pm.
Performed in Spanish with projected English surtitles, Cruzar la Cara de la Luna is epic journey told in song about lost loves divided by borders. Tackling a timely tale, the legendary Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan combines the traditional music of Mexico with high drama to depict the cross-border story of two families and three generations.
The electrifying Afro-Cuban All-Stars, under the guidance of legendary Juan de Marcos, pay tribute to Cuba’s golden age of music when the band makes its debut at The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) on Friday, January 19. Mixing the joy and melancholy for Cuba’s past with the exuberant sounds of contemporary performance, the 17-piece Afro-Cuban All-Stars bring the next generation of Cuban music to life on stage. In addition, the evening will also feature The Soraya debut of the Havana-based Harold López-Nussa Trio, which will open the evening.
“Is there a better way to celebrate the New Year than with the joyous sounds of the Afro-Cuban All-Stars and the Harold Lopez Nussa Trio?,” said Thor Steingraber, Executive Director of The Soraya (formerly known as Valley Performing Arts Center). “This season we celebrate music from 14 different countries with our Music Knows No Borders series. Not only do the All-Stars bring music from beyond our borders but also from multiple generations of past artists who still influence us today.”
After her wildly popular 2015 debut, flamenco dance dynamo Leilah Broukhim returns to The Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (formerly Valley Performing Arts Center) with Dejando Huellas (Traces), a personal story about her own Jewish and Persian heritage. Broukhim’s furious flamenco footwork exalts the Spanish art form, while her emotional expression tells the tale of a woman searching for meaning and identity. Dejando Huellas makes its LA debut after performances in Paris, New York, Madrid, and Copenhagen.
“Leilah Broukhim is the quintessential ‘Music Knows No Borders’ performer, as her background displays a diverse and complex heritage,” said Thor Steingraber, Executive Director of The Soraya. “Her appearance in 2015 with Compañia Flamenca José Porcel was so emotional and electric that we were thrilled to have her back, especially with this deeply personal performance and the backing of these phenomenal musicians.”
Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya) welcome The Klezmatics on Saturday, December 16 at 8:00pm as they celebrate Yiddish culture at this time of year when candles and family warm the dark nights. As outspoken human rights advocates, their Hanukkah celebration embraces audiences of all cultures and backgrounds as they explore Hanukkah lyrics by Woody Guthrie, father of American Folk Music.
Since their emergence more than 30 years ago, The Klezmatics have raised the bar for Eastern European Jewish music, made aesthetically, politically and musically interesting recordings, inspired future generations, created a large body of work that is enduring, and helped to change the face of contemporary Yiddish culture. Often called a “Jewish roots band,” The Klezmatics have led a popular revival of this ages-old, nearly forgotten art form.
Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya) welcomes back two-time Emmy nominee and five-time Grammy nominee Michael Feinstein to perform in a Holiday Celebration including Classic Standards as well as selections from his album, A Michael Feinstein Christmas on Friday, December 8 at 8:00pm
Michael Feinstein has built a dazzling career over the last three decades bringing the music of the Great American songbook to the world: recordings that have earned him his Grammy nominations, his Emmy nominated PBS-TV specials, his acclaimed NPR series and concerts spanning the globe, appearances at The White House, Buckingham Palace, Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall and Sydney Opera House – and his work as an educator and archivist – all of this defines Feinstein as one of the most important musical forces of our time.
Guitarist Eliot Fisk, known worldwide as a charismatic performer famed for his adventurous and virtuosic repertoire, will perform the J. S. Bach cello Suites 1, 3, and 6 as he has transcribed for guitar onstage at the Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya) on Wednesday, December 6 at 8:00 pm.
After nearly 50 years performing for the public, Fisk remains as his mentor Andres Segovia once wrote, “at the top line of our artistic world.” Currently, Fisk continues to break new ground for the guitar with marathon performances of these transcriptions of all 6 Bach solo cello Suites, as well as duo performances with guitar legend Angel Romero and with a new trio formed with virtuoso guitarists Joaquin Clerch and Aniello Desiderio.
(Los Angeles, CA) November 3, 2017 - iLe (Ileana Cabra Joglar) is a Puerto Rican singer, composer and vocalist who spent a decade touring Latin America with her brothers in the popular band Calle 13. Now, as successful solo artist she comes to Los Angeles performing music from her recent album that combines alt-rock with traditional boleros. Gaby Moreno, who sings the theme song for the series opening intro of Disney’s first Latina princess Elena of Avalor, moved to the US from Guatemala after high school and now calls Los Angeles her home. Her guitar and bluesy vocals move easily between pop, soul, and classic Latin sounds. Both boast a Latin Grammy win and will serve up their unique blend of cultures onstage as part of the Music Knows No Borders series at VPAC (The Soraya) on Saturday, November 18 at 8pm.
The Israeli-born, Brooklyn-based virtuoso clarinetist, Anat Cohen, presents a tapestry of sound that captures the jubilation of many genres, spanning modern and traditional jazz, Brazilian choro, klezmer and much more.
On November 30, she will bring her Tentet with musical direction by Oded Lev-Ari – in its West Coast Premiere – to VPAC (The Soraya) to perform music from her recently released album, Happy Song, as part of this season’s Music Knows No Borders series.
“We are thrilled to host Anat Cohen Tentet’s West Coast debut, and to bring Cohen and her incredible band to our audience first, right on the heels of their brand-new record, Happy Song,” said Thor Steingraber, Executive Director of VPAC (The Soraya). “Cohen, an Israeli clarinetist with roots in New York jazz, is a prime example of our Music Knows No Borders programming. And with this ten-piece band onstage, you will get to experience Anat Cohen rock out on the clarinet like you’ve never heard that instrument played before.”
Following the DIAVOLO | Architecture in Motion® stunning multi-week appearances as finalists on NBC’s America’s Got Talent, LA’s own daredevil dance company wraps its 25th Anniversary milestone season at Valley Performing Arts Company (The Soraya) with a participatory all-day, indoor-outdoor “open house” series of free workshops, community activities, and three fully staged performances (1:00pm, 3:00pm and 7:00pm) featuring 11 DIAVOLO works, followed by a free dance party on Saturday, November 11 from 1:00pm to 11:00pm.
This season, VPAC (The Soraya) introduces a new experience for L.A’s live music lovers as the 1,700 seat theatre is transformed into an intimate onstage New York-style jazz club for a series of global and chamber music performances.
The Onstage Sessions: Jazz series will be unveiled when Pakistan’s groundbreaking East-meets-West classical/jazz collective The Sachal Ensemble performs Song of Lahore for one-night only, Tuesday, November 14 at 8pm. This evening follows the Ensemble’s recent performance at the United Nations in celebration of Pakistan’s 70th year of independence. This Los Angeles debut is presented as part of VPAC’s Music Knows No Borders series.
The 10-piece group, touring the United States for the first time this fall, combines conventional Western instruments (such as piano, bass, drums) with traditional Pakistani ones, such as tabla, dholak (a two-headed hand drum) and sarangi, a bowed string instrument. Its repertoire on this tour will mix traditional Sufi music, ragas and beloved Pakistani film songs (such as " Ranjha Ranjha," from the movie Raavan) with uniquely South Asian spins on Western classics, including The Beatles' "Eleanor Rigby," R.E.M.'s "Everybody Hurts," Michel Legrand's "The Windmills of Your Mind," and, of course, their highly distinctive take on Dave Brubeck's hit "Take Five," a video that became a YouTube hit with over 1 million views.
For fifty years, the feverish and fierce art of flamenco guitar has spread like wildfire from Spain to points around the globe, ignited by the late Paco de Lucía. Honoring that legacy, Javier Limón, producer of Paco’s later GRAMMY-winning albums, reassembles the original band that toured with Paco de Lucía in this tribute performance, The Paco de Lucía Project arriving at Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya) on Saturday, November 4 at 8:00pm.
The internationally celebrated Moscow State Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Pavel Kogen, Music Director and Chief Conductor, will make their debut on the stage of the Great Hall of Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya) on Thursday, November 2 at 8pm. The all-Russian program which honors the traditions and romantic history of Russia includes Rachmaninov’s The Rock, Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1, and Scriabin’s Symphony No. 2. This concert is the first of the season’s SOARING performances that will feature several of the world’s greatest orchestras during the 2017-2018 season at VPAC (The Soraya). It also marks the debut of the fourth of the largest Russian orchestras to appear on the VPAC stage—the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra in 2011, the Russian National Orchestra in 2016 and The St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra in 2017.
Comprehensive Learfield Campus+ Partnership Allows for Unprecedented Engagement Across Campus, Athletics
The 2017/18 Swinging Jazz series at VPAC (aka. The Soraya) kicks off when American funk maestro Maceo Parker takes to the stage for an unforgettable tribute to the great Ray Charles.
In the fall of 1963, Parker was standing out the back of The Coliseum in Greensboro, North Carolina waiting to catch a glimpse of anyone from the band after a very special concert. After only seeing strangers, the band eventually spilled out followed, finally, by the great man himself, Ray Charles. The awestruck young saxophonist muttered to himself ‘One of these days you’re all gonna know me!’ Now, over half a century later, Parker brings it full circle as he performs a tribute to Ray Charles.
CSUN Alum Cheech Marin (Up in Smoke, Jane the Virgin) hosts an evening of comedy for the 3rd annual CSUN alumni performance on September 28 at Valley Performing Arts Center (The Soraya). The evening will also feature Paul Rodriguez, Marcella Arguello, Frankie Quinones and Francisco Ramos.
With an unequalled catalog of film, TV, and recordings, Cheech Marin, a five-decade veteran has done it all, from king of counter culture to his familiar voice in Disney’s The Lion King. Cheech returns to his old CSUN stomping grounds and brings some of the young guns of comedy with him to VPAC.
Valley Performing Arts Center will partner with New West Symphony in November to celebrate the centenary and extraordinary legacy of American composer Leonard Bernstein with Bernstein on Stage. Bernstein specialist John Mauceri, a protégé of the legendary composer and conductor, will lead the New West Symphony Orchestra, the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles (Dr. Joseph P. Nadeau, Artistic Director and Conductor), Women of Areté Vocal Ensemble & California Lutheran University (Wyant Morton, Director) along with Suzanna Guzmán, Davis Gaines, Celena Shafer and Casey Candebat on Friday, November 17 at 8:00pm. The official Bernstein at 100 celebrations begin Sept 22 in Washington, DC and the VPAC performance will be among the first concerts subsequently to perform in Los Angeles.
Great bandleaders shape their ensembles into their personal instruments.
In the early 1980s, guitarist and composer Paco de Lucía assembled a sextet that, in its instrumentation and jazz-like approach, would forever change the sound of flamenco. It would take the guitarist 20 years to put together another group that would provide him with both the support and push for his talent and his vision.
Event honors the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Family Foundation Saturday, September 16 at 7:00 pm
Director Miloš Forman’s film AMADEUS one of the greatest biopics ever made, swept the 1984 Oscars winning eight awards including Best Picture. Now, Valley Performing Arts Center opens its 2017-18 Season on Saturday, September 16 at 7:00pm with a live performance featuring the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) and LA Opera Chorus, conducted by film music specialist and CSUN alum Richard Kaufman, to a newly mastered print created for live orchestral accompaniment.
Dr. Dianne F. Harrison, president of California State University, Northridge, today announced the renaming of CSUN’s Valley Performing Arts Center to the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts.
The California State University Board of Trustees approved the naming in recognition of a $17 million gift from the Y&S Nazarian Family Foundation, the philanthropic foundation of Younes and Soraya Sarah Nazarian and their family. The gift will support the programming and operations of the award-winning performing arts center, which has become one of the cultural jewels of the region in the six years since it opened. The gift is one of the largest in the history of the California State University and the system’s largest single gift to support the arts.
VPAC’s new season makes a strong commitment to international artists, and to artists who demonstrate VPAC’s theme “Music Knows No Borders.”
Davis Gaines reprises his Ovation Award-winning role as Don Quixote in Man of La Mancha, winner of the Tony Awards for Best Musical and Best Score, and one of the most enduring works of musical theatre.
Valley Performing Arts Center will present Martha Graham and American Music, a program curated especially for Valley Performing Arts Center, performed by the Martha Graham Dance Company and wild Up, the classical music ensemble, conducted by its artistic director Christopher Rountree. Martha Graham Dance Company returns to VPAC after a sold-out performance in 2015.
Valley Performing Arts Center will presents a celebration of Grammy Award winner Doc Severinsen’s 90th birthday with Doc Severinsen and His Big Band on Thursday, April 13 at 8:00pm. The former bandleader for the NBC Orchestra/The Tonight Show is still going strong.
From the first notes to the final breath, West Side Story is one of the most memorable musicals and greatest love stories of all time. As powerful, poignant, and timely as ever, the thrilling Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim score – including “Tonight,” “Maria,” “America” and the classic “Somewhere,” remains one of the best-ever written. Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is transported to modern-day New York City, caught between warring street gangs, the Jets and the Sharks. Their struggle to survive in a world of hate, violence, and prejudice is one of the most innovative, heart-wrenching and relevant musical dramas of our time.
Valley Performing Arts Center will present Buster Keaton’s The General with a score performed live by the New West Symphony on Saturday, March 25 at 8:00pm. CSUN alum Richard Kaufman returns to VPAC to conduct. The film will feature a score prepared by American musician and historic preservationist, Dennis James.
Aspen Santa Fe Ballet (ASFB) celebrates the second year of its three-year residency at Valley Performing Arts Center with a program of new works that celebrates the company’s commitment to creating new contemporary dance on Friday, March 3 at 8:00pm.
Five-time Grammy Award-winning Maria Schneider Orchestra will bring their big-band sound to Valley Performing Arts Center stage for one-night only on Wednesday, February 22 at 8pm.
“La Santa Cecilia exemplifies the modern-day creative hybrid of Latin culture, rock and world music!” – KCET Artbound
From the heart of Olvera Street, L.A.-based Grammy Awardwinning La Santa Cecilia leaps to the VPAC stage on Saturday, February 18 for a one-night only rocking performance. Named for the patron saint of music, La Santa Cecilia has created its own distinct LA sound that blends Latin culture, rock and world music. Drawing its musical inspiration from a vast and varied pool of music—cumbia, bossa nova, rumba, bolero, tango and klezmer music, La Santa Cecilia takes all that to another level, blending its music with a contemporary mix of rock with a solid Latin beat.
On Saturday, February 25, Valley Performing Arts Center will host a special all-day event -- Global Currents, an event that celebrates water itself, starting with the outdoor Global Currents Festival at the Valley Performing Arts Center Lawn and Courtyard, free to the public, from 1-6pm and featuring six Los Angeles ensembles representing six regions of the world. The day culminates in a ticketed performance in the Great Hall from The Nile Project, in which twelve artists from along the Nile River share a message of cultural unity and global sustainability.
The Summit: The Manhattan Transfer and Take 6 | Thursday, February 9, 2017 at 8:00pm
Combining musical forces for the first time, The Manhattan Transfer and Take 6 will create an unforgettable swinging concert event at Valley Performing Arts Center on Thursday, February 9 at 8:00pm. Between them, the two groups boast a remarkable 20 Grammy Awards, and a range of styles that covers nearly every genre of popular music; from jazz to swing, from gospel to R&B. No ordinary double bill, this is a show combining unexpected twists and turns to create a once-in-alifetime event.
Valley Performing Arts Center joins in the year-long global tribute to celebrate the 70th birthday of prolific American composer, John Adams, with three distinct programs to honor the legendary California composer: American Berserk, a celebration of John Adams curated by Patrick Scott on January 14, St. Lawrence String Quartet on February 3 and wild Up, Adams/Punk Rock/Player Piano on February 16.
Hansel & Gretel: A Wickedly Delicious Musical Treat.
Valley Performing Arts Center’s PLAY DATE series continues the all-ages rock musical, Hansel & Gretel: A Wickedly Delicious Musical Treat with music and lyrics by Grammy-nominated children’s music artist, Justin Roberts and book by Ernie Roberts. This brand new production with animations by Micah Chambers- Goldberg, 3D animations by Gaspard Lacroix and direction by Michael Matthews has one performance only on Sunday, January 22 at 3:00pm.
Christmas in Ireland is one of the most important holidays for families and friends, as many Irish people living abroad come home to gather in celebration. Now, that joyous and warm Irish tradition comes to the Valley Performing Arts Center for the first time when Danú, An Irish Christmas Gathering: Féile Na Nollag celebrates the holidays on Sunday, December 11 at 7:30pm.
“Dazzlingly beautiful each year.” -- The New York Times
Valley Performing Arts Center presents New York’s premiere choral ensemble and Baroque orchestra: The Choir of Trinity Wall Street and Trinity Baroque Orchestra, under the direction of Julian Wachner, performing the season’s most heralded piece of music: Handel’s Messiah on Wednesday, December 7 at 8:00pm.
Six concerts from all over the world December 2 to 17
Valley Performing Arts Center is bringing the holidays to the Great Hall with a cornucopia of musical attractions this December. From Vienna to Mexico to New York City to Ireland, these worldly offerings are sure to ignite the holiday spirit.
VOTE OR DIE LAUGHING A Post-Modern Political Vaudeville Culture Clash joins special guests La Santa Cecilia, Cristela Alonzo, Buyepongo, Pacifico Dance Company, Marga Gomez and more Directed by Dan Guerrero
With less than three weeks to Election Day, the 2016 presidential campaign continues to be both harrowing and hilarious. Perhaps there is no better time than right now to send in the clowns of political satire — Culture Clash! The boys are coming back to VPAC on November 1 to celebrate Día de los Muertos with some of the most daring artists of our time.
Valley Performing Arts Center continues to bring diverse programming to the Valley with a new addition to the 2016-17 season: jazz and hip-hop vocalist, José James presents Yesterday I Had the Blues: The Music of Billie Holiday on November 3 at 8pm. Featuring a live band with James Francies on keys, Josh Hari on bass and Nate Smith on drums, this evening will pay tribute to Holiday, who José James cites as his “musical mother.”
"This mother and daughter duo has one foot firmly planted in the greatest traditions of Indian Classical dance, and the other foot delicately balanced in the future, with imaginative new combinations of movement, music, and story-telling. This brand new piece, Written in Water, will he experienced up close, with the audience sitting on VPAC's stage"
Valley Performing Arts Center continues to bring diverse programming to the Valley with two new additions to their 2016-17 season: jazz and hip-hop vocalist, José James presents Yesterday I Had the Blues: The Music of Billie Holiday on November 3 at 8pm and Leslie Odom Jr., Tony and Grammy winner for the role of “Aaron Burr” in Hamilton on November 17 at 8pm. This will be Odom Jr.’s first West Coast performance, since winning the Tony for Hamilton.
Latin Grammy award winner Aida Cuevas and Grammy nominated Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles will co-headline an all-female mariachi concert spectacle at Valley Performing Arts Center on Sunday, October 16 at 7:30pm. Aida Cuevas is Mexico’s most important female voice, marking a career spanning 40 years. Paired with Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles’ vivacious musical spirit, this evening will celebrate the treasured art form of mariachi.
VPAC presents North American Premiere of Serj Tankian’s Elect the Dead & Orca Symphonies.
After selling out the November 10 premiere, Valley Performing Arts Center has added an additional performance of Serj Tankian’s Elect the Dead & Orca Symphonies on Saturday, November 12 at 8:00pm. With a vocal range over four octaves, Serj Tankian, considered one of the greatest singers in hard rock history and a CSUN alumnus, will present his Orca Symphony and perform and sing his Elect The Dead Symphony alongside the CSUN Orchestra under the direction of John Roscigno at Valley Performing Arts Center.
The Rapper and the Pop Superstar performed a mash- up of their hits ‘Make Me’ and ‘Me, Myself and I’ while PILOBOLUS provided a mind-bending visual component using innovative shadow work which combines legendary PILOBOLUS dance, with high-energy, fast-paced multimedia.
Wynton Marsalis, the acclaimed performer, composer, educator, bandleader, and nine-time Grammy winner, stretches across all genres to create a body of work that places him among the world’s most influential and important artists. Valley Performing Arts Center welcomes his return with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra (JLCO) on Friday, October 8 at 8:00pm.
The New York Times calls Kelli O’Hara one of “our greatest re-interpreters of musical standards” and on October 14 at 8:00pm, “Broadway’s golden girl and luminous star” returns to Valley Performing Arts Center in a one night only concert. Part of VPAC’s Broadway series, An Evening With Kelli O’Hara will feature the Tony award winner performing some of her most beloved Broadway tunes.
A mix of shadow theatre, storytelling, dance, circus and concert created in collaboration with Steven Banks of SpongeBob SquarePants
Following sold-out runs around the world, Pilobolus’ amazing spectacle of inventiveness, Shadowland, returns to Southern California on Sunday, October 2 at 3:00pm to kick-off VPAC’s popular Family Matinee Series.
Music icon Sting will premier new songs from his forthcoming album, 57th & 9th, at a private KCSN VIP Live Session on Aug. 31 at the Valley Performing Arts Center on the campus of California State University, Northridge.
Jerry Herman’s Broadway Musical Classic Stars Tony and Emmy Award winner Tyne Daly.
American musical legend Jerry Herman created the theatrical hat-trick in 1969 when Dear World opened on Broadway. Joining Hello, Dolly! and Mame, Herman became the first composer-lyricist in history to have three productions running simultaneously on Broadway.
The boys of Culture Clash are taking over Valley Performing Arts Center with VOTE OR DIE LAUGHING: A Post-Modern Political Vaudeville on Tuesday, November 1 at 8:00pm. Culture Clash will be celebrating Día de los Muertos, mixing in observations about America’s most important election and special appearances from La Santa Cecilia, Cristela Alonzo, Buyepongo, Pacifico Dance Company, Marga Gomez and more.
With a vocal range over four octaves, Serj Tankian, considered one of the greatest singers in hard rock history and a CSUN alumnus, will present his Orca Symphony and perform and sing his Elect The Dead Symphony alongside the CSUN Orchestra under the direction of John Roscigno at Valley Performing Arts Center for one night only on Thursday, November 10 at 8:00pm.
Season includes eight original events only seen at VPAC
Highlights include a special VPAC John Adams Celebration, four onstage symphonic orchestras, three Broadway musicals, four Latin music events, and two classic silent films with live orchestras
An original production of the Grimm Brothers’ Hansel & Gretel, Shadowland from acclaimed dance troupe Pilobolus, Akram Khan Company’s Chotto Desh, and SHAOLIN WARRIORS: THE LEGEND CONTINUES and full productions of WEST SIDE STORY and MAN OF LA MANCHA are some of the highlights from Valley Performing Arts Center’s newly-announced 2016-17 Season.
Eight original events only seen at VPAC
Highlights include a special VPAC John Adams Celebration, Four onstage symphonic orchestras, three Broadway musicals, four Latin music events, and two classic silent films with live orchestras