At the Vilar this January: 11 shows in 25 days
January hosts a variety of artists on the Vilar Performing Art Center’s stage
The new year at the Vilar Performing Arts Center features a full schedule, especially in January, where 11 shows in 25 days ranging from classical to bluegrass, Broadway to dance with a little rock and roll sprinkled in between, kicked off the new year. That’s the essence of the Vilar Performing Arts Center: a variety of shows during a short period of time.
Owen Hutchinson, the executive director of the Vilar Performing Arts Center says that quality and diversity are key factors that go into booking artists at the VPAC.
“We are always thinking about the variety of artists in any given week or month,” Hutchinson said. “We also look at if the show occurs during peak versus off-peak timing. We also consider if the show will appeal to local or regional residents or destination guests. Lastly, does the artist allow us to reach new and/or existing audiences?”
With 530 seats situated in a horseshoe-shaped theater, the Vilar presents itself as the place to see a concert, not only in Eagle County, but in the Rocky Mountains. Consider how memorable your day would be if you skied and snowboarded all day and then saw an amazing performance that night? Here are the artists that make up the Concert category:
The HillBenders present WhoGrass – Jan. 13, 7:30 p.m. – General admission: $25
WhoGrass is literally what it sounds like: music by The Who played in a bluegrass style. You’ll love “Pinball Wizard,” “Teenage Wasteland,” and “My Generation.”
The Simon & Garfunkel Story – Jan. 21, 7:30 p.m. – Tickets start at $58
The humble beginnings, rise to fame, dramatic split and reunion tour are all chronicled in the concert-style theater show depicting the lives of Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel. Fan favorites like “Cecelia,” Mrs. Robinson” and “Bridge Over Troubled Water” are enhanced by film footage and photos of the duo on stage.
Grand Funk Railroad – Jan. 26, 7:30 p.m. – Tickets start at $75
The aptly named Some Kind of Wonderful Tour sums up the memories and melodies you’ll recall when listening to 70s rock legends, Grand Funk Railroad. Listen to founding band members Don Brewer and Mel Schacher as they are joined by other rock and rollers who will bring arena rock to the VPAC.
No need to wait until the Vail Dance Festival this summer, the Vilar hosts several dance groups during the winter.
Dance Theater of Harlem – Jan. 18, 7 p.m. – Reserved seats $78, students $75
Watch as this 17-member dance company takes the stage performing works from George Balanchine as well as new works. Dance Theater of Harlem has been around since 1969 and has toured all over the world.
Bodytraffic – Jan. 29, 7 p.m. – Reserved seats $62, students $25
Since the company was formed in Los Angeles in 2007, its aim has been to enlighten and inspire all audiences. They move different, sound different, it’s a different kind of show than you’ve seen before.
There will be quite a few classical performances during January due to the newly established Therese M. Grojean Classical Series.
Ilya Yakushev – Jan. 10, 6 p.m. – May Gallery general admission $125
Adjacent to the theater is the intimate May Gallery, a perfect venue to hear Ilya Yakushev, a piano soloist who has performed with orchestras from around the world and started earning awards when he was 12 years old.
Maxwell Quartet – Jan. 16, 6 p.m. – May Gallery general admission $125
You’ll hardly believe that all this sound is coming from these four lads from the United Kingdom. The Maxwell Quartet, which consists of friends who have been playing together in orchestras since their youth will provide a lively and impassioned show.
Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center – Jan. 25, 7 p.m. – Reserved seats $68, students $10
The works of Dvorak, Brahms, Mahler and Franck will come to life as two violinists, two violas, a cello and a piano engage the audience on the stage at the VPAC. Normally performing at the Alice Tully Hall at the Lincoln Center, take advantage of having this dynamic chamber showcase in our backyard.
Apollo’s Fire – Jan. 31, 7 p.m. – Reserved seats $78, students $10
This show is a highlight of the season, according to Hutchinson. “Hearing Vivaldi’s “Winter” from the “Four Seasons” performed live is a transcendent experience, every time. For fans of “Chef’s Table” on Netflix, you’ve been humming along to the song for years,“ he said.
Choir of Man – Jan. 12, 7:30 p.m. – Tickets start at $45
This is another one of Hutchinson’s top picks. “This a full-scale Broadway production about an English pub that is known for its resident choir and they happen to sing hits of the 80s and 90s. Actors will even serve pints to audience members from the front of the stage,” he said.