Looking for things to do this semester?

Marina Boyle, Managing Editor

The Mercyhurst Institute for Arts & Culture (MIAC) is the much-loved creative branch of Mercyhurst that brings unique talent and performing arts experiences to Erie each year.

Under the leadership of Brett Johnson, Ph.D., Artistic Director, MIAC is poised to ring in 2020 with a host of exciting events.

Mercyhurst’s student ensembles also offer some performances you will not want to miss.

Showcasing Mercyhurst’s own talents, the Performing Arts Center (PAC) will welcome the Wind Ensemble, the Jazz Ensemble and the Mercyhurst Civic Orchestra this semester.

The Concert Choir will give performances in the Walker Recital Hall throughout the semester, and the Jazz Ensemble can be heard in the Taylor Little Theatre.

For dance lovers, the opportunity to see Mercyhurst’s homegrown dance talent is ample, with National Water Dance on Apri 18 and “Raw Edges XXII,” beginning April 24.

On March 27 at 8 p.m. and 29 at 2 p.m., the PAC will host “Opera Pops and Sizzles.”

Members of the D’Angelo Opera Theatre, accompanied by the Mercyhurst Civic Orchestra, will perform scenes and arias from operas made famous by television, movies and cartoons.

Johnson will direct students in the Theatre Program’s production of “Babes in Arms,” a quintessential musical that boasts beloved songs including “Where or When,” “My Funny Valentine,” “The Lady is a Tramp” and “Johnny One Note.”

This production will have four performances, Feb 20 to 22 at 7:30 p.m. and a matinée on Feb 23 at 2:00.

Two months later, “Mozart and His Merry Maids” takes to the Walker Recital Hall stage on April 24 at 7 p.m. for an evening of Mozart.

Looking beyond Laker talent, the MIAC Live series will welcome some highly anticipated guests.

The fun begins with the “Yamato: The Drummers of Japan” on Feb. 11.

Their new production, entitled “Jhonetsu – Passion,” aims to capture Yamato’s strength, spirit and endurance as an art.

Over spring break, on March 3 at 7:30 p.m., the PAC will be the venue for a performance by Les Ballets Trockadero De Monte Carlo.

These male ballerinas present a playful, entertaining view of classic ballet by showcasing their talents in parody form en travesti – crossdressing.

The world’s foremost all-male comic ballet troupe promises to give a night to remember.

In the latter half of the season, MIAC Live is excited to present Broadway, television and film star Brian Stokes Mitchell on April 1 at 7:30 p.m., followed closely by “An Evening With Glenn Close,” celebrated actress and performer, on April 16 at 7:30 p.m.

For those still not wowed, there are also the Cummings Art Gallery offerings. The 2020 offerings start with “The Heart’s Bright and Dark Light,” which is a collection of new work from Minnesota painter Jil Evans.

Her work will be followed by the annual Patricia S. Yahn Juried Student Art Show, again displaying the work of students in the University’s arts programs.

The gallery will close out the year with its permanent collection.

“From Broadway to Hollywood and comic ballet to traditional Japanese drumming, the Institute’s eclectic spring roster of offerings promises something for everyone,” Johnson said.

Ticket prices vary by performance, but for all MIAC Live events, students can get in for free with their Mercyhurst ID.

Make sure you get your ticket in advance, because these performances can sell out quickly.

Don’t have a ticket for a sold out show?

You can join the cancellation line for any performance.

Any unclaimed will call tickets or empty seats will be released to patrons on a first-come, firstserved basis when the box office opens at 6:30 p.m.

So far in the spring season, the Institute has been able to accommodate every single person waiting in the cancellation line.

MIAC also strengthens the vibrancy of Erie by opening its doors to the public for all these shows, so you are welcome to bring your family or friends, as long as they purchase a ticket as well.

Without a doubt, the new decade of MIAC is going to offer something for everyone to enjoy.

For more information on performances and tickets, visit the MIAC website at https://miac.mercyhurst.edu/.