LiveArts 2015: One Night. One Stage. Four Arts.

Imagination takes flight in this immersive multi-sensory musical experience!

Do you remember the first time you heard Ode to Joy from Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony or when you were first dazzled by a pas de deux, a Broadway dance number or an opera production? That first impactful encounter with art is a force that connects all of us—and will be recreated at LiveArts on April 24, 2014. 

In an unprecedented performance at Van Andel Arena, the Grand Rapids Symphony orchestra, Grand Rapids Youth Symphony, Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus and Youth Choruses will come together with the Grand Rapids Ballet, Opera Grand Rapids and Broadway Grand Rapids to present an emotionally charged journey. LiveArts will celebrate the power of art and the richness of our own West Michigan community. 

The concept for LiveArts was born while the Grand Rapids Symphony was planning its 85th Anniversary celebrations. During the organization’s last milestone year, the orchestra traveled to New York City for its Carnegie Hall debut to a full house. While the Grand Rapids Symphony wanted to perform at that scale for its 85th year, the community’s voice has been heard. This time, the celebration will be at home, together with our city’s finest performing arts organizations for the first time and shared with thousands of West Michigan residents.  

LiveArts will take the audience on a journey as it follows a child’s dream—the impact of art and how it brings us together. The Grand Rapids Symphony, Grand Rapids Youth Symphony, Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus, Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses, Grand Rapids Ballet, Broadway Grand Rapids and Opera Grand Rapids will perform selections from iconic works like Carmina Burana, Tosca and Phantom of the Opera. The experience will also include a dazzling visual element: a screen the length of a humpback whale projecting 3D motion graphics and floating above the stage. 

The production features a talented team of artistic leaders. Jeffrey Buchman is the Artistic Director and Designer of LiveArts and has been called “a formidable talent” by Opera News. He is no stranger to large-scale productions, having worked as assistant director for the Seattle Opera and Chautauqua Opera and directed operas from Nicaragua to Indiana. Robert Weirzel, known for his extensive work with companies like Glimmerglass Festival, New York City Opera and Boston Lyric Opera is the Lighting Designer. Music Director David Lockington, Associate Conductor John P. Varineau, Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus Director Pearl Shangkuan, Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses Director Sean Ivory, Artistic Director Robert Lyall of Opera Grand Rapids and Artistic Director Patricia Barker of the Grand Rapids Ballet are all key players in the production. 

LiveArts will feature the artistic talent of West Michigan as well. Marshall Yoder, a local event and production manager, will act as Technical Director. East Grand Rapids alum Joe Carroll returns home to perform in LiveArts following great success on Broadway as Cinderella’s Prince Charming. The performance will also feature thousands of students from the Forest Hills, East Grand Rapids and Rockford school districts’ orchestra and band programs. 

Be a part of this extraordinary celebration of the arts in our community! Tickets are available online at and by calling 616.454.9451x4.    

Posted by Sam Napolitan at 09:30
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