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New era for Ballet Idaho, bounty of musical talent on the stage and Robert Franz returns

Ballet Idaho will perform Edwaard Laing's take on "Cinderella" in May. A former dancer New York City Ballet and Netherlands Dans Theatre,  Laing is now the artistic director of Ballet Met in Columbus, Ohio. He wrote and choreographed his "Cinderella" in 2013 for his company.
Ballet Idaho will perform Edwaard Laing's take on "Cinderella" in May. A former dancer New York City Ballet and Netherlands Dans Theatre, Laing is now the artistic director of Ballet Met in Columbus, Ohio. He wrote and choreographed his "Cinderella" in 2013 for his company. Provided by Ballet Met

Treasure Valley performing arts groups and presenters are ramping up for the 2018-19 season.

This year’s highlights include two plays by a nationally recognized Idaho playwright, the return of Robert Franz to an Idaho stage for a performance with Opera Idaho, a bounty of powerful musical talent to the Morrison Center stage, and a new era of classical and contemporary dance for Ballet Idaho.

Ballet Idaho

501 S. 8th St., Boise. 208-343-0556,

  • “NewDance: Form and Concept” is a re-envisioning of the NewDance program that will bring professional choreographers in to work with Ballet Idaho, including Boise’s Lauren Edson of LED. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8-Friday, Nov. 9; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10; 1 and 5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 11, at the Ballet Idaho Theatre, 501 S. 8th St., Boise. Single tickets go on sale Sept. 19.
  • “The Nutcracker.” The company’s classical chestnut will be retired after the 2018 performance. Look for a new production in coming years. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13-Friday, Dec. 14; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15; noon and 4:00 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 16, Morrison Center, 2201 Cesar Chaves Lane, Boise. Single tickets go on sale Wednesday, Oct. 17.
  • “(re)Define” is the winter repertory program that defines new Artistic Director Garrett Anderson’s vision for Ballet Idaho as a contemporary classical company. It includes a Balanchine classic, several works by internationally known choreographers and a world premiere by Australian ballet star Danielle Rowe. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8-Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, Morrison Center. Single tickets go on sale Dec. 5.
  • “NewDance: Inside View” will highlight the company’s dancers as choreographers, including Daniel Ojeda, Anderson and rehearsal director Anne Mueller. 730 p.m. Thursday, March 7-Friday, March 8, 2019; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 9, 2019; 1 and 5 p.m. Sunday, March 10, 2019, Ballet Idaho Theatre. Single tickets go on sale Jan. 17, 2019.
  • Edwaard Liang’s “Cinderella” will cap the season with a spectacular twist and contemporary take on this classical masterpiece using the Prokofiev score.: 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 3; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 4, 2019. Single tickets go on sale Feb. 20, 2019.

Season tickets run $213 and $164 for five- and four-show packages. The four-show package does not include “The Nutcracker.”

Garrett Anderson, Ballet Idaho's new artistic director, prepares for the fall season as dancers return to the studio.

Boise Contemporary Theater

854 Fulton St., Boise, 208 331-9224,

  • “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” opens the season. Simon Stephens’ adaptation of Mark Haddon’s novel took the London and New York theater scenes by storm in winning multiple Olivier and Tony awards in 2014-15. It centers on Christopher, a young man on the Autism spectrum, who vows to solve the murder of his neighbor’s dog and ends up going on a life-changing journey as he discovers deep family secrets. Oct. 17-Nov. 10.
  • “With Love and a Major Organ,” by American playwright Julia Lederer, is a modern fable about a man with a paper heart and the stranger who falls in love with him. What happens when you give your heart away, and when you discover you actually have one? Dec. 5-22.

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Playwright Sam Hunter, pictured here in 2011, returns to his home state for Boise Contemporary Theater’s production of Hunter’s “Lewiston & Clarkston.” The two plays will be performed in repertory in February and March. Darin Oswald Idaho Statesman file photo

  • “Lewiston” & “Clarkston,” two plays by Samuel D. Hunter, explore the changing identity of the American West through the lens of life in two Idaho towns. This is the third time BCT has produced works by Hunter, who grew up in Moscow and is now an Obie award-winning playwright and a 2014 MacArthur Fellowship recipient. Feb. 6-March 9.
  • “Rabbit/Moon” will be the next original play from BCT producing artistic director Matthew Cameron Clark and artistic associate Dwayne Blackaller. April 17-May 4, 2019.

Shows are at 7 p.m. Wednesdays-Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays. Early-bird season tickets run $96-$181 general, $118 and $157 for three- and four-show flex packages, $85 for students. Box seats are available. The second Wednesday of each run is Teacher Night. Tickets are $20 for teachers with a school ID.

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Pianist Jon Nakamatsu, pictured here with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, will perform Saint-Saens Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Boise Phil in September. Rodger Mallison MTC

Boise Philharmonic

516 S. 9th St., 208-344-7849,

Concerts are at 7:30 p.m. Fridays at Swayne Auditorium at Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays at the Morrison Center in Boise.

  • “Brahms 1”: Clyne’s “Masquerade,” Saint-Saens Piano Concerto No. 2 with pianist Jon Nakamatsu and Brahms’’ Symphony No. 1, Sept. 7-8.
  • “Bernstein at 100”: Overture to “Candide,” “Chichester Psalms” with the Boise Phil Master Chorale and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5. Oct. 5-6.
  • “The Sea”: Britten’s “Four Sea Interludes,” Debussy’s “La Mer” and Elgar’s “Enigma Variations.” Nov. 10-11.
  • “Mendelssohn + More”: Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony Mendelssohn’s Concerto for Violin with soloist Simone Porter and Sibelius’ Symphony No. 5, Jan. 11-12, 2019.
  • “Viennese Masters”: Mozart’s Overture to “The Magic Flute,” Schubert’s Symphony No. 5 and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5, “Emperor” with soloist Natasha Paremski, Feb. 15-16, 2019.
  • “The Virtuoso Orchestra”: Adams’ “The Chairman Dances,” Sean Shepherd’s “Songs” and Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra, April 26- 27, 2019
  • “Russian Romantics”: Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme with cellist Stéphane Tétreault and Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2, May 17-19, 2019.

Eric Garcia conducting photo
Eric Garcia will conduct “Bernstein at 100” on Oct. 5 and 6. Provided by the Boise Philharmonic

Boise Philharmonic Pops Series

  • “Star Wars - A New Hope” Live in Concert: The 1977 “Star Wars” film will screen as the Boise Philharmonic plays the score, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22, Morrison Center only.
  • “Holiday Pops”: Holiday music with the Boise Phil Master Chorale and guest conductor Chelsea Tipton II, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7 in Nampa, and Saturday, Dec. 8, in Boise.
  • “Hollywood Hits”: Themes from classic films, including “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “Superman,” Saturday, March 30, 2019, Morrison Center only.

Pops series packages run $93-$204. Individual ticket prices vary.

Season extras (Dates and times subject to change)

  • Handel’s “The Messiah,” Friday and Saturday, Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, 8 p.m., St. John’s Cathedral, 807 N. 8th St., Boise.

  • Silent Movies night, Feb. 2, 2019 at 7:30 p.m., Egyptian Theatre, 700 W. Main St., Boise.

Season tickets are on sale now: $252-$123 general, $175-$81 student in Nampa, $407-$141 general, $260-$96 student in Boise. Individual tickets are $23-$50 in Nampa, $25-$72 in Boise.

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Former Boise Phil music director Robert Franz returns to the Boise stage to conduct Opera Idaho’s “West Side Story in Concert” in September.

Opera Idaho 513 S. 8th St., Boise, 208-345-3531,

  • “West Side Story” in Concert will kick off the season under the baton of former Boise Philharmonic music director Robert Franz. The production will feature soprano Cecilia Vioetta López as Maria, tenor Joshua Dennis as Tony. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15, 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 16, at the Morrison Center, 2201 Cesar Chavez Drive, Boise.
  • “Don Giovanni,” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, will feature baritone Kyu Won Han in the title role. 7:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 26, 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 28 at the Egyptian Theatre, 700 W. Main St., Boise.
  • “Aida,” Giuseppe Verdi’s masterwork, will be performed at the Egyptian Theatre. Set in ancient Egypt, it tells the ill-fated love story of Aida, an Ethiopian slave, and the warrior Radamès. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22, 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24, 2019.
  • “The Mikado,” Gilbert and Sullivan’s brilliant, satiric operetta will be performed by the New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players. Set in Japan, it sends up British politics and culture of the day with a wit and insight that rings true today. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6, and Sunday, April 7, 2019 at the Morrison Center.
  • Season extra: “As One,” a chamber opera by composer Laura Kaminsky and librettists Mark Campbell & Kimberly Reed, explores the world of a transgender woman with before and after perspectives. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 9-Saturday, May 10, 2019 at the Danny Peterson Theatre, inside the Morrison Center. (Tickets: $37 and $53.)

Season tickets run $80 to $250, single tickets are $25.50 to $81 at the Morrison Center, $24 to $76 at the Egyptian. Senior, child and group discounts are available for single-ticket sales.

“Wicked” might just be Idaho’s favorite musical of all time. It continues to defy gravity as it makes its way back to Boise’s Morrison Center as a season extra in spring 2019. Idaho Statesman file

Morrison Center Broadway In Boise

2201 W. Cesar Chavez Lane on the Boise State University campus.

  • “Finding Neverland.” 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, and 2 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2.

  • “The King and I,” 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25, 2019, and 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26.
  • “Something Rotten!” 8 p.m. Friday, April 12, and 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, April 13, 2019.
  • “Rent: The 20th Anniversary Tour,” 8 p.m. Friday, June 7, and 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, June 8, 2019.
  • “Les Miserables,” 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, Wednesday, July 31, Thursday, Aug. 1, 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 2, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 3, and 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019

    “Wicked,” (not included in the season ticket)

  • 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 6

  • 2 and 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 7

  • 8 p.m. Friday, March 8

  • 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, March 9

  • 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday, March 10

  • 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12

  • 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 13

  • 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 14

  • 8 p.m. Friday, March 15

  • 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, March 16

  • 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday, March 17, 2019.

Season tickets range from $225 to $365 at (208) 426-1111 and Individual ticket prices vary and go on sale 30 to 60 days before each show’s run. Availability may vary. (“Wicked” is not part of the season; there is no on-sale date yet.)

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The cast of TheatreWorks U.S.A.’s production of “Charlotte’s Web” will play at the Morrison Center in April 2019. Provided by TheatreWorks U.S.A.

Morrison Center Family Theatre Series

Individual tickets are $10 each at 208-426-1110. There is no season package.

The Cabin

The Cabin’s Readings & Conversations series is sold out for the first time. There are some Individual tickets to see MacArthur Genius Matthew Desmond at the Morrison Center on Oct. 9. There could be rush ticket availability. See season info here.