UAB’s Alys Stephens Center: new 2013 season calendar

UAB’s Alys Stephens Center has announced new artists and events for the 2013 season, beginning Jan. 12 with Alabama’s own Patterson Hood.
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Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013
Patterson Hood
, 7:30 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. The ASC welcomes Drive-By Truckers co-founder and Alabama native Hood for a concert that will let his alt-country vocals shine. Hood’s third solo recording, “Heat Lightning Rumbles in the Distance,” came out in September, and the Muscle Shoals native has been touring non-stop since. At a fall 2012 show in Boston, Hood said, “People ask why I decided to do a solo record this time instead of another Truckers album. I wanted something simpler and a chance to play smaller rooms, where it’s more a conversation among friends than a big rock show. I’ve played big rock shows, 1,800 or 1,900 times, and there’s plenty of time for me to do another thousand. But right now I wanted to do something different and just have a chance to sing to y’all.” Join the ASC for happy hour beginning at 6:30 p.m. featuring local craft brews. Tickets are $32.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.


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Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013
Lucinda Williams
, 7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. Williams makes her first visit to the ASC for a special acoustic duo show with guitarist Doug Pettibone. The warmth and acoustical marvel that is the Jemison Concert Hall is the perfect setting to truly experience the essence of this artist. With equal grace, Williams offers a guided tour of life’s dark clouds while homing in on its silver lining. The ability to do so is a rare gift, one that Williams displays on her latest Lost Highway album, “Blessed.” Williams won her first Grammy Award for Best Country Song in 1994. In 1998, “Car Wheels on a Gravel Road,” an album that fused rock, blues, country and Americana, went gold and propelled her to another Grammy. In 2002, Time magazine named her “America’s best songwriter.” Tickets are $56.50, $47.50 and $37.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.


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Friday, Jan. 25, 2013
Chick Corea and Gary Burton with Harlem String Quartet
, 8 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. One of the most absorbing jazz partnerships around is the duo of Chick Corea and Gary Burton. An NEA Jazz Master, 18-time Grammy winner, brilliant American composer and keyboard virtuoso, Corea has attained living-legend status after five decades of unparalleled creativity and staggering artistic output. Burton is a 12-time Grammy nominee and six-time winner, earning his first in 1971 and his most recent in 2009 for Best Jazz Instrumental Album. For this tour Corea and Burton will perform material from their latest album, “Hot House,” exploring their take on standards by such composers as Kurt Weill, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Thelonius Monk, John Lennon and Paul McCartney. For their ASC concert they will join with the classical ensemble Harlem String Quartet, which will expand its legendary chamber-jazz repertoire on new and classic Corea-Burton tunes. Tickets are $68.50, $59.50 and $49.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.


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Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013
ArtPlay Parlor Music Series: California Guitar Trio
, 7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center at ArtPlay, 1006 19th St. South. Part of the Patty McDonald Presents ArtPlay’s Parlor Music Series. Experience the music up close and personal in the grand parlor of the beautiful Victorian mansion known as ArtPlay, the ASC’s home for education and outreach, as the popular ArtPlay Parlor Music Series continues. California Guitar Trio’s eclectic repertoire includes original compositions, surf covers and unconventional re-workings of classical music. Their performances are astounding, their diversity unparalleled and their technical wizardry amazing. CGT has released 14 albums, including seven studio CDs featuring original songs and a variety of works spanning many genres, four live releases and a Christmas CD. In October 2010, CGT released “Andromeda,” an all-original album nearly three years in the making. It was named Best Instrumental Album that year by the Indie Acoustic Project. Tickets are $39.50; wine and hors d’oeuvres included. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013
ArtPlay presents “Lessons Well Learned,”
with two shows, at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., in UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. ArtPlay’s Make It Happen Performing Ensemble, under the direction of Alicia Johnson, is composed of local high school students who have researched and written this original production celebrating Black History Month. Packed with memorable songs, spoken word and dance, the story is brought to life by the ensemble through performances using voices of the past and present to tell a story that inspires and educates. Tickets are $10 adults; $8 children. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.




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Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013
Gallagher’s “Last Smash” Tour
, 8 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. It’s the final hurrah, and soon it will be safe for watermelons everywhere. Gallagher is going out for one last tour before he hangs up his Sledge-O-Matic and he’s heading for the ASC. Prepare to see the Jemison Concert Hall like you never have before: covered in plastic. For their own dry-cleaning safety, patrons sitting in the orchestra section will be covered in plastic too (plastic provided.) The incredibly popular comedian, prop artist and food smasher has been entertaining audiences worldwide for more than four decades. Gallagher’s “Last Smash” will be a little bit of everything, from favorite routines to brand-new material dreamed up just for this tour. The evening will feature an audience Q&A segment. Tickets are $39.50; a limited number of $75 VIP tickets are available and include a pre-performance reception at 6:30 p.m., performance ticket, complimentary beverages and snacks, and a meet-and-greet with Gallagher. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013
Buddy Guy
, 7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. The ASC is thrilled to bring back a favorite artist who is celebrating an incredible milestone. Guy has been named as one of seven recipients of the 35th Annual Kennedy Center Honors alongside actor Dustin Hoffman, comedian and television personality David Letterman, prima ballerina Natalia Makarova and rock band Led Zeppelin. A member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Guy is considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time. His latest recording, “Stay Around a Little Longer,” features a hit duet with his friend B.B. King. Guy’s autobiography, When I Left Home: My Story, was released earlier this year. His last visit to the ASC in September 2009 is still fresh in fans’ minds: Guy ran up and down the aisles of the Jemison Concert Hall playing for fans and getting them all on their feet — a true entertainer. Tickets are $69.50, $60 and $49.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013
Mary Chapin Carpenter and Shawn Colvin
, 7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. The ASC has struck just the right chord with the pairing of acclaimed folk-rock vocalists Carpenter and Colvin. Both have graced the ASC stage with their own bands, but this will be their first duo performance. Singer-songwriter Carpenter, a five-time Grammy winner who also has won two CMA and two Academy of Country Music awards, has been through enormous difficulties in recent years, and her newest release, “Ashes and Roses,” is an album about grief, loss and getting to the other side of the pain. It ranks as her most powerful in years. Singer-songwriter Colvin is a three-time Grammy Award winner. “All Fall Down,” her latest release, was produced by guitarist Buddy Miller and recorded at his home studio in Nashville. The album addresses the dissolution of a relationship with the sort of dry-eyed candor that has long been a hallmark of her work, which has always been tempered by humor and sensuality and a gift for finding strong, simple melodies. Tickets are $63.50, $55.50 and $45.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Saturday, March 2, 2013
Brian McKnight
, 8 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. Making his first appearance at the ASC, McKnight is an artist who needs no introduction. He has released 13 albums to date, with several going two and three times platinum, and he has sold more than 20 million albums worldwide. This talented singer-songwriter, pianist and arranger is a favorite of Birmingham audiences. A multi-instrumentalist who plays eight instruments — piano, guitar, bass guitar, percussion, trombone, tuba, flugelhorn and trumpet — McKnight is perhaps most recognized for his strong falsetto range and is widely regarded as one of the strongest talents in the contemporary R&B genre. He’s received numerous honors, including Soul Train Awards and Image Awards, as well as 16 Grammy nominations and nominations for MTV Video Music, BET and American Music awards. Tickets are $66.50, $57.50 and $47.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Friday, March 8, 2013
ArtPlay Parlor Music Series presents Charlie Albright
, 7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center at ArtPlay, 1006 19th St. South. Part of the Patty McDonald Presents ArtPlay’s Parlor Music Series featuring Young Concert Artists. Experience the music up close and personal in the grand parlor of the beautiful Victorian mansion known as ArtPlay, the ASC’s home for education and outreach, as the popular ArtPlay Parlor Music Series continues. Albright is the winner of the prestigious 2010 Gilmore Young Artist Award and the 2009 Young Concert Artists International Auditions. He is hailed as “among the most gifted musicians of his generation” by The Washington Post. Albright has already made his orchestral debuts with the Boston Pops with conductor Keith Lockhart, the Seattle Symphony with conductor Gerard Schwan, the Phoenix and Lansing symphonies and with Alondra de la Parra at the San Francisco Symphony, where he has been re-engaged for its “Summer and the Symphony” concerts. Albright has collaborated four times with cellist Yo-Yo Ma, including on the Silk Road Project. He is the winner of the 2011 Louis Sudler Prize in the Arts from Harvard University. Albright was also named artist-in-residence for Harvard University’s Leverett House, a position once filled by Ma. Tickets are $37.50; wine and hors d’oeuvres included. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Saturday, March 9, 2013
American Legacies: Preservation Hall Jazz Band and The Del McCoury Band
, 8 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. The ASC welcomes two legendary ensembles of American music for one incredible and unforgettable evening. Together in concert, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and The Del McCoury Band create a seamless blend of soul-lifting traditional harmonies as the high and lonesome sound of the Appalachians meets the hot and lively jazz of New Orleans. Boasting a direct lineage from the earliest incarnations of New Orleans jazz, the current roster of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band features some of the Crescent City’s finest and most exciting musicians. Whether performing at Carnegie Hall or Lincoln Center, for British royalty or the King of Thailand, this music embodies a joyful, timeless spirit. The Del McCoury Band is a world-class bluegrass ensemble that performs original and traditional compositions with eloquent harmonies. Holding more than 30 trophies from the International Bluegrass Music Association Awards, including nine for Entertainer of the Year, and multiple Grammy awards and nominations, it is the most honored group in bluegrass history, earning the acclaim of colleagues throughout the music industry. Tickets are $63.50, $54.50 and $44.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Saturday, April 13, 2013
Aaron Neville
, 8 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. Grammy Award-winning soul and R&B vocalist Aaron Neville will visit the ASC as a solo act for the first time. Neville will release his latest, “My True Story,” his debut for EMI’s Blue Note Records, in January 2013. The record, produced by legendary Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards and Blue Note Records President Don Was, finds Neville revitalizing some of his favorite songs from the doo-wop era and beyond. The selections on the album include classics by such vocal-group legends as Little Anthony and the Imperials (“Tears on My Pillow”), Hank Ballard and the Midnighters (“Work with Me, Annie”) and the Drifters (“Money Honey,” “Under the Boardwalk,” “This Magic Moment”). The New Orleans native will be accompanied by his dynamic, top-notch tour band. Tickets are $66.50, $57.50 and $47.50. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Sunday, April 21, 2013
ArtPlay presents an ArtPlay Studio Ensemble in “Play
,” with two shows at 1 and 3:30 p.m., at UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. Set to several movements from the Camille Saint-Saëns musical suite “The Carnival of the Animals,” this whimsical contemporary ballet explores the engagement learned on the playground. This ballet will be performed by an adult ArtPlay Studio Ensemble and choreographed by ArtPlay Teaching Artist William-Michael Cooper. Using both modern dance and ballet, “Play” expresses the importance of playtime as children and asks the question, “At what age did we stop playing?” Tickets are $10 adults; $8 children. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.

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Friday, April 26, 2013
ArtPlay Parlor Music Series presents Noé Inui and Vassilis Varvaresos,
7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center at ArtPlay, 1006 19th St. South. Part of the Patty McDonald Presents ArtPlay’s Parlor Music Series featuring Young Concert Artists. The ASC is excited to continue its popular ArtPlay Parlor Music Series by showcasing the innovative pairing of two winners of the Young Concert Artists International Auditions: Inui and Varvaresos. As an emerging international soloist and chamber musician, violinist Inui combines strength, energy and virtuosity with sensitivity in his playing. Born in 1985, he began violin lessons at age 4. Inui won the 2008 European YCA Auditions in Leipzig, Germany, and the 2008-09 YCA International Auditions in New York. Varvaresos, born in 1983, was the youngest pianist to win the YCA International Auditions, at age 14. Through YCA, he gave acclaimed debut concerts in New York and at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The duo’s program for the evening is set to include Mozart’s Sonata in B-flat Major, Strauss’ Sonata in E-flat Major, Schubert’s Rondo in B-minor and Bartok’s Rhapsody for Violin and Piano No. 2. Tickets are $37.50; wine and hors d’oeuvres included. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Friday, May 3, 2013
“Lux Somnia: Light Dreams,”
a festival of art, technology and community, 7:30 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center on its outdoor Engel Plaza, 1200 10th Ave. South. Rain date May 4. Innovative local artists, spearheaded by painter, sculptor and digital projection artist Jean-Jacques Gaudel, will use UAB’s Alys Stephens Center as a canvas for digitally projected light dreams. For this groundbreaking event, the entire southern façade of the ASC building will be wrapped and transformed into a giant projection screen. The event’s centerpiece will be an Architectural Mapping Projection show, “Light Dreams,” designed specifically for the ASC building. The evening also features “points of light” art installations by local artists Randal Crow, Joe Walker, Leisa Cole, Tony Rodio, Christophe Nicolet and Randy Gachet with visual arts students from the Alabama School of Fine Arts, an illuminating dance piece created by acclaimed choreographer Mary Foshee, the premiere of a giant interactive video game created by the UAB School of Engineering, interactive VJ’ing by ArtPlay students, live music from Blue Galaxy String Ensemble and more. Free; donations encouraged. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org.



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Thursday, June 6, 2013
Viva Health Starlight Gala featuring Amy Grant and Vince Gill
, 7 p.m., presented by UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, 1200 10th Ave. South. The Viva Health Starlight Gala, Birmingham’s crown jewel of performing arts events, benefits the programs and education initiatives of UAB’s Alys Stephens Center. This year the ASC presents one of the most dynamic couples of American music: country and bluegrass star Vince Gill and contemporary Christian and mainstream pop vocalist Amy Grant. A member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry, Gill has sold more than 26 million albums and won 20 Grammy Awards (the most of any male artist) and 18 Country Music Association Awards, including two for Entertainer of the Year. Grant has sold more than 30 million albums and won six Grammy Awards in many categories. She started her career as a Christian music artist in the mid-1980s, completing a successful crossover to mainstream pop in the early ’90s but never forsaking her gospel roots. Married since 2000, the pair has two of the purest, loveliest voices in music today. Premium seating tickets for the performance and an elegant pre-show reception are $125 each. Regular seating tickets and an elegant pre-show reception are $85 each. Call 205-975-2787 or visit www.AlysStephens.org


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