Through its annual Arts Series, W&J brings world-class performing artists in music, dance and theatre to campus for the enjoyment of our student, faculty and staff, and the greater community.
Arts Series tickets are sold in a series package, or as individual tickets. For pricing and ticket ordering, please see the Box Office and Ticket Information page.
*All Arts Series events are in the Olin Fine Arts Center Theatre unless otherwise noted.
2019-20 Arts Series Events
Thursday, Sept. 26, 2019
Distinctively Austin. Steel Betty lives at the crossroads of what makes Austin, Texas the engine driving traditional music in America. Flavors of bluegrass, folk, blues, Tex-Mex, Old Time music, and classic country are a reflection of today’s American music scene. Steel Betty, the hip, virtuosic trio, embraces Austin’s eclectic culture and brings this lively music out of Texas for the rest of the country to experience.
David McD (guitar, vocals), Maddy Froncek (banjo, upright bass, vocals), and Micah Motenko (mandolin, piano, vocals) are multi-instrumentalists capturing the sounds and harmonies of Austin like no other ensemble. Music of Bill Monroe, the Stanley Brothers, Spirituals, the Conjunto tradition, and more highlight Steel Betty’s performances. The trio often conducts workshops for aspiring musicians and students and has a wonderful, interactive program for schools introducing children to the great variety and depth of music from their part of America.
Steel Betty’s debut recording was released in summer 2018.
Dead Composers Club
Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2019
Co-led by long-time collaborators, saxophonist Noah Preminger and drummer Rob Garcia, Dead Composers Club is a band that takes on projects, recording and performing music by some of the great composers in history. Their first album called “Chopin Project” adapts Frederick Chopin’s brilliant piano music for a jazz quartet carrying over all the romance, passion and beautiful melodies while adding a new twist. Preminger and Garcia have performed at many important festivals and venues across the globe, such as the Montreal Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, Ear Shot Jazz Festival, Birdland, The Village Vanguard, Blue Note and Ronnie Scotts, among so many others.
Oscar® Nominated Short Subjects
Live Action- Friday, Feb. 7, 2020
Animated- Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020
The Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday, Feb. 9th . See the Live Action and Animated Short Subject nominees, then root for your favorite. Come dressed in your awards season best and walk the red carpet for our annual soiree’!
*The advance single ticket price (or season ticket package) includes tickets for both nights. Individual tickets will be available at the door for specific nights, but for the full ticket price.
‘Oscar’ is a registered trademark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Reduced Shakespeare Company- Hamlet’s Big Adventure (a prequel)
Thursday, March 19, 2020
Before the Tragedy, there was…HAMLET’S BIG ADVENTURE! From the guys that brought you such “(abridged)” classics as William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (abridged) and The Ultimate Christmas Show (abridged) comes this fast, funny, physical extravaganza — a brand new theatrical treat!
In this hilarious (and completely fictional) prequel to Hamlet, nothing is rotten in the state of Denmark. There’s laughter and joy and music and more laughter as teenage Hamlet leaps into action to save his beloved nunnery from closing. Enlisting his good buds Ophelia and the jester Yorick, Hamlet and friends put on a show – what could possibly go wrong? Along the way, Ophelia tries (and fails!) to pass her swim test and Hamlet must avoid his practical joker father, the King, who has a tendency to leap out from behind house plants pretending to be a ghost. Meanwhile, Yorick teaches them about showbiz, comedy, and skull juggling and they all wonder why Hamlet’s mother spends so much time at his uncle’s house! Is it Shakespeare meets the Muppet Babies? Might be, or might not be. If you like Shakespeare, you’ll like this show. If you hate Shakespeare, you’ll love this show.
Pianist, Mark Valenti: All American Program
Tuesday, April 7, 2020
Mark Valenti received his Master of Music from Northwestern University, Bachelor of Music from the Philadelphia Musical Academy and has studied with such notable teachers as Benjamin Whitten, Zoltan Kocsis and Mary Sauer. In addition to giving solo recitals in cities throughout the U.S., Mr. Valenti has performed in France, Belgium, Hungary and Luxembourg as well as for former First Lady Barbara Bush in Washington, D.C.
Mark Valenti has performed recitals live on WFMT classical radio. He has also done extensive work in the Jazz field including performances with Gregory Hines, Frank Foster and Al Grey and has appeared on television with Joe Sudler's Swing Machine and singer/actor Christopher Durham.
Formerly Professor of Music at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Xavier University in Chicago and the Loire Valley Music Institute in France, Mr. Valenti currently teaches at his studio in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago and is available for lessons for all levels and all styles.
All American program selections include: The Alcotts by Ives, Piano Blues by Copland, Sonata by Barber, and pieces by Stefan Wolpe and Jon Fisher.