‘To balance!’ will be staged at the UN Freed Center for the Performing Arts

ADA, Ohio – The School of Visual and Performing Arts at Ohio Northern University will celebrate the Swing Jazz era with two performances of Swing! Saturday, October 22 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, October 23 at 2 p.m. at the Freed Center for the Performing Arts. Backed by Liberty National Bank, this captivating show of Broadway song and dance broke down ethnic and cultural barriers through styles such as Jive, Swing, Lindy Hop, West Coast Swing and Hip-Hop Swing.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.FreedCenter.com, by phone at 419-772-1900 or in person at the Freed Center box office, Monday through Friday, noon to 5 p.m. Adult tickets are $20 with discounts for UN faculty and staff. ($15), Seniors and UN Alumni ($10), and $5 tickets for UN Students and Children. Additional discounts ranging from 10-20% are available through Freed Center subscription packages.

The show is directed and choreographed by guest artist Alison Solomon who comes to the UN direct from London where she was choreographing the workshop for a new West End/Broadway musical. She saw Swing! on Broadway when it opened in 1999 and “was mesmerized and inspired, to say the least”. She was chosen for the National Tour of Swing! and has performed the Lindy Hop feature over 500 times in theaters across the country. Her hope now is to “share the rich history of dance, which originated in African-American communities in Harlem in the late 1920s.” Describing it as “an art form that has continually challenged and inspired me throughout my artistic career”, Solomon hopes to transport us “to that moment in history when music poured from their souls and where communities integrated for the first time, to share the joy and freedom to move with such abandon and celebration.”

Other guest artists for this production include Elijah Dillehay as associate choreographer as he joins fellow professional dancers James Little and Francis Isaí Rivera-Pacheco. Student UN interpreters overall include Kennedy Aikey (Newark), Jacob Bassitt (Ada), Chloe Chiapelli (Clarkston, Michigan), Hailey Brooke Elswick (Woodstock, Georgia), Isabelle Fisher (Columbus), Madeline Fisher ( Columbus), Julie McConnell (Indian Trail, North Carolina), Carina Milano (Chicago, Illinois), Katja Roberts (St. Petersburg, Florida), Zachary Ryan (Westerville), and Emily Signor (Reisterstown, Maryland). Jacqueline Fisher (Upper Arlington) and Miranda Keller (Columbia Station) star as swings.

The band’s star instrumentalists are bandleader and keyboardist Michael Jordan; A. Lewis Jones on drums; Joel Hazard, bass; Andrew Liebermann and Jason Yost, reeds; Dave Kosmyna, trumpet; Dan Saygers, trombone; and Scott Parnel, guitar.

The guest designers who take us back in time are Brian Ruggaber as set designer and Melanie Mortimore, costume designer.
UN staff members in the production team consist of Brian Sage as producer; costume shop manager Ameera Ansari; Kathleen E. DeVault, lighting designer and production manager; Brian Phillips, technical director; Elynmarie Kazle, mentor manager; and Joe Gozdowski, sound designer.

UN students on the production team include Rachel Boyle (Morrow) as assistant set designer; Ben Schneider (Wapakoneta), assistant sound designer; stage manager Olivia Gierke (Oregon) assisted by Adalyna Mislevy (Detroit, Mich.) and Armani Ponder-Keith (Macomb, Mich.); Juliana Tate Kelly (Cleveland) as Light Panel Operator; sound card operators Alex Hare (Granville) and Johannah Thacker (Arlington); and follow operators Josh Honaker (Defiance) and Dakota Stude (Lewistown).

For more information on the Swing! performances or other events for the Freed Center’s 2022-2023 season, visit www.FreedCenter.com or call the box office at 419-772-1900 to receive a season brochure.

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