Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra’s Paul and Sarah Cronin
Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra's Paul and Sarah Cronin

Making life as "flavorful as possible" is the goal at the Rogers Center for the Arts at Merrimack College in North Andover.

And, as the 2013-2014 season swings in to gear, the Rogers Center staff is proud of the eclectic program of concerts and shows that they have booked.

The Center's mission, notes its website, is to "provide a stimulating, artistic and educational environment that supports the visual and performing arts and enriches the cultural fabric of Merrimack College and Merrimack Valley communities."

"We celebrate mind, body and spirit through performances by national and international artists, community organizations, students and more. From music, theater and dance to comedy, free films and art exhibits, we have something for everyone," it notes.

No Published CaptionSun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our MyCapture site.
No Published Caption

Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our MyCapture site.

The season gets underway on Sunday, Sept. 22, with the Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra 14th annual Pops Concert at 2:30 p.m. It features an afternoon of lively Pops music with performances by young musicians from Timberlane High School.

On Wednesday, Sept. 25, Aquila Theater Company brings a chilling production of Fahrenheit 451, the Ray Bradbury apocalyptic classic, to life. Considered a work of science fiction, he wrote it in 1953, adapted it for the stage and brought it to the screen in 1966. Fahrenheit 451's issues of censorship, the effects of technology on society and how knowledge is gained remain real concerns today.


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More musical choices include the Orchid Ensemble in Concert with The Treble Chorus of New England as guests, Thursday, Oct. 3, at 7 p.m. The Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra returns for performances on Nov. 3, Dec. 8 and March 16.

The New England Classical Singers perform Handel's Messiah and more on Dec. 7 and present a concert of American tunes devoted to love and nature on March 8.

The Orchid Ensemble
The Orchid Ensemble

Theater lovers get their fill, with a production by the college's Department of Visual and Performing Arts of Sam Shepard's True West on Oct. 17-18. The Pentucket Players bring Rodgers and Hammerstein's The King and I to life Nov. 22-30.

Acting Out! Theater Company presents Peter Pan, the Musical, Feb. 7-9, and Shakespeare and Company brings the tragedy Romeo and Juliet to audiences on Feb. 27, March 27 and April 17.

The Pentucket Players greet spring with the jovial Monty Python's Spamalot April 11-13.

For ballet buffs, the New England Civic Ballet Company presents The Nutcracker Dec. 13-15 in four performances and returns with Snow White March 22.

And for Mom on Mother's Day, the Treble Chorus of New England presents a concert of "spring treats" May 11.

Tickets are on sale now at the Rogers Center box office, call 978-837-5355 or visit on Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. For a season brochure, forward your mailing address to RogersCenter@merrimack.edu or call the box office. Visit merrimack.edu/community/rogers/event_descriptions/ for details.

On the marquee

  • AT THE LYRIC: Boston's Lyric Stage Company has launched its 40th season with the Boston premiere of Richard Bean's One Man, Two Guvnors, a British comedy that had a successful Broadway run and is based on Carlo Goldoni's 18th century Italian comedy The Servant of Two Masters. Now open, it plays through Oct. 5. The season continues with Water by the Spoonful, Quiara Alegria Hudes' Pulitzer Prize winning play about people in crisis and their search for connection, Oct. 18-Nov. 16; Becky's New Car, a comedy of modern manners by Steven Dietz, Nov. 29-Dec. 22; Working, a musical adapted from the book by Studs Terkel that reveals the hopes, dreams, joys and concerns of average Americans by following them through a 24-hour workday, Jan. 3-Feb. 1; Arthur Miller's classic drama Death of a Salesman, Feb. 14-March 15; Rich Girl, a new comedy about women and their relationships with men, mothers and money, by Victoria Stewart, March 28-April 26 and Into the Woods, the musical by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine, May 9-June 7. Seven play and four play subscriptions are on sale, with prices beginning at $152. Single tickets also available. Visit lyricstage.com for details.
  • OUTDOOR FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT: Bring the kids to Tyler Park, 700 Westford St., Lowell, on Saturday, Sept. 14, for a little fun in the park, when the Lowell Film Collaborative offers a free outdoor screening of Pee-Wee's Big Adventure. It starts at 6:45 p.m. Bring blankets, snacks and bug spray. Visit lowellfilmcollaborative.org for info.
  • TANTALIZING TANGO: Forever Tango, the internationally-acclaimed dance sensation, returns to Boston's Cutler Majestic Theatre for seven performances Oct. 29-Nov. 2, following its fourth run on Broadway and an international tour to Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Central and South America. The show, featuring 14 tango dancers and on on-stage 11 piece orchestra, tells the story of the birth of the tango in 19th-century Argentinian brothels and bordellos and its fascinating evolution into an international dance sensation. Tickets $30-$95 at CutlerMajestic.org or call 617-824-8000.

Nancye Tuttle's email address is nancyedt@verizon.net.