Chandler Center for the Arts to offer shows year-round - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Chandler Center for the Arts to offer shows year-round

June 2nd, 2017 development
Chandler Center for the Arts to offer shows year-round

By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski


In Michelle Mac Lennan’s 18 years at the Chandler Center for the Arts, she has worked tirelessly to provide the best programming possible.

Now, to broaden and deepen her audiences, Mac Lennan has scheduled shows year-round.

“We’re opening with Jonny Lang in July,” said Mac Lennan, who has served as general manager for nearly three years.

“That moves away from the model of just serving the winter visitors. We’re going to do programs outside of that key season.”

After Lang, the next scheduled show is the Pushcart Players’ “The Velveteen Rabbit, Reborn,” on Sept. 23. To keep folks coming through the doors in between gigs, the Chandler Center for the Arts is hosting a summer concert series in August and September. Tickets are free, but there are suggested donations of $5 per child, $10 per adult and $15 per family.

“We have some phenomenal artists this year,” Mac Lennan said of the summer concert series. “They’re free, but they’re worth paying for. People who have never been here can find out about the center and attend other events.”

The summer concert series offers more than free shows, however. Patrons can purchase tickets at a 50 percent discount for one of the season’s performances.

“It’s a great way for someone to explore a new title or something they haven’t seen before,” Mac Lennan said. “Someone who attends two shows or more tends to be more committed.”

The 2017-2018 season highlights include a Disney Retro Slide Show, 50th anniversary tribute performances to The Family Stone and The Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” “Musical Thrones, A Parody,” Cesar Millan, Lee Rocker and Clint Black.

Returning to the CCA are Get the Led Out, Black Violin and Texas Tenors, along with Zoppé, An Italian Family Circus, presented by Steena Murray. Celebrating its 175th anniversary, Zoppé features Giovanni Zoppé, a sixth-generation circus performer who plays Nino the Clown.

The season is heavy on multicultural performances, too. The 18th annual Mariachi and Folklorico Festival, under the artistic direction of Vanessa Ramirez, is on the docket, as are Jarabe Mexicano, Moscow Festival Ballet, Celtic Nights and Pacifico Dance Company.

“I think this year is my favorite,” she said. “We have a little bit of something for so many types of people. We’re really trying to develop new audiences and different demographics. It’s something I’ve been proud of.” j