Central Indiana arts organizations are going for bold this fall. With big beloved classics, tributes to iconic national artists and art focused on major historical moments, audiences are in for an impact.
The Phoenix Theatre Cultural Centre’s “Tick, Tick… Boom!” will come on the heels of the popular Netflix movie, and Indiana Repertory Theatre will produce a play that focuses on Chinese history in the U.S. with the story of Afong Moy. Star musicians — including Indiana’s own violinist Joshua Bell and soprano Angela Brown — are among the performers.
Here are 12 concerts, plays and more that you don’t want to miss.
Sept. 23-25 at the Toby at Newfields, 4000 Michigan Road. $35-$55. indyballet.org
Artistic Director Victoria Lyras has carried famous choreographer George Balanchine’s legacy to Indianapolis Ballet. The company received permission from The George Balanchine Trust to stage selected works, and this performance will show some of his most iconic and challenging ones.
Sept. 29 at the Palladium, 1 Carter Green in Carmel. Tickets start at $45 and are available at thecenterpresents.org
Bloomington native and Indiana University graduate Joshua Bell will return to Indiana for a concert alongside pianist and NPR “From the Top” host Peter Dugan. The Grammy winner has released more than 40 albums across a 30-year career.
‘Tick, Tick… Boom!”
Sept. 30-Oct. 30. Phoenix Theatre Cultural Centre, 705 N. Illinois St. $25-$45. phoenixtheatre.org
The recent Netflix movie has increased the profile of the musical by Jonathan Larson, who’s most famous as the creative mind behind “Rent.” “Tick, Tick… Boom!” is an autobiographical story that chronicles a composer who’s facing challenges in his personal and professional life as he tries to fulfill his dream of writing the next great American musical.
‘The Bodyguard: The Musical’
Oct. 1-2 at the Basile Theatre at the Athenaeum, 401 E. Michigan St. Starting at $30. ipacindy.org
A singing superstar hires a former Secret Service agent bodyguard to protect her, and love and a battle of the wills ensues. It’s all set to a soundtrack with hits that include “Run to You,” “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and “I Will Always Love You.” Indiana Performing Arts Theatre will produce the show, and KaidyDid Productions will direct.
Indy Jazz Fest
Oct. 1-2 at MacAllister Amphitheater in Garfield Park. Tickets range from $50-$200 and are available at indyjazzfest.net
The city’s flagship jazz concert returns, with Robert Glasper, Tank and the Bangas, Lalah Hathaway, Norman Brown and more set to headline. The festivities also will include additional performances Sept. 30 at the Jazz Kitchen.
Oct. 7-8 at The Cabaret, 924 N. Pennsylvania St., $65-$105. thecabaret.org
The Tony winner, who’s known for playing the lead in “Tootsie” as well as roles in The CW’s “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” and NBC’s “Shades of Blue,” will perform.
‘The Chinese Lady’
Oct. 11-Nov. 6 at Indiana Repertory Theatre, 140 W. Washington St. Season packages are available, and watch irtlive.com for single tickets to go on sale.
Playwright Lloyd Suh, who is from the Indianapolis area, wrote this work that’s inspired by the true story of teenager Afong Moy. She was recognized as the first Chinese woman to come to America, and she was seen as exotic for her customs and bound feet. The play’s story chronicles the discovery of identity — of both the young woman and the young American nation.
Brahms and Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures at an Exhibition’
Oct. 14-15 at Hilbert Circle Theatre, 45 Monument Circle. $16-$93. indianapolissymphony.org
Two of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra’s best — Concertmaster Kevin Lin and Principal Cello Austin Huntington — will perform Johannes Brahms’ celebrated Concerto for Violin, Cello & Orchestra in A Minor, Op. 102. Also on the program are Mikhail Glinka’s Overture to Ruslan and Lyudmila, Carlos Simon’s “Fate Now Conquers” and Modest Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition.” Student tickets are available for $10.
“People just listen to him”:What makes ISO Concertmaster Kevin Lin so extraordinary
Oct. 15 at Schrott Center for the Arts at Butler University. Season subscriptions are on sale, and watch icomusic.org for single tickets.
Jessie Montgomery’s “Banner” draws on the National Anthem’s music to explore many different 21st-century U.S. experiences. And Kenny Broberg, winner of the Indianapolis-based 2021 American Pianists Awards, will perform Robert Schumann’s Piano Concerto, Op. 54 in A Minor.
Oct. 20-23 at Indiana Repertory Theatre, 140 W. Washington St. Subscriptions are available now, and individual tickets will go on sale Sept. 26. dancekal.org
The classic has become one of Dance Kaleidoscope’s best-known works thanks to the vision of Artistic Director David Hochoy. It will return again in two acts — “The Day” and “The Night” — that include a mythical Wheel of Fortune, wedding, birth, war, witchcraft and an homage to victims of the AIDS epidemic.
Nov. 3-6 and Nov. 10-12. IndyFringe Basile Theatre, 719 E. St. Clair St., and IUPUI Campus Center Theatre, 420 University Blvd. Watch for tickets to go on sale at onyxfest.com.
The festival that celebrates Black playwrights is back with six shows this fall. Plots include a suburban woman who encounters strange noises in her family’s home, homelessness, a school shooting, divorce and an exploration of poet Mari Evans.
Nov. 11-13 at the Tarkington Theater, 3 Carter Green in Carmel. Watch indyopera.org/tosca.html for tickets.
Indy’s own soprano Angela Brown will play the leading role in the classic opera about a woman and her lover under threat from the chief of police during a political investigation.
Contact IndyStar pop culture reporter Rory Appleton at 317-552-9044 and [email protected], or follow him on Twitter at @RoryDoesPhonics.