Immerse yourself in the rich Triangle performing arts scene with these picks for classical music, theater, dance, and more.
by Addie Ladner & Emily Gajda
Live shows are back for good in spring 2022 — so it’s time to immerse yourself in the rich Triangle performing arts scene. Whether you want to catch a big broadway show at DPAC, see debut works from Raleigh’s own Carolina Ballet, NC Symphony, or the Opera, or bring the kids the Raleigh Little Theatre, our cultural institutions offer something for everyone.
Live Theater To Catch
Enemy of the People
The Justice Theater Project presents Enemy of the People, a modern retelling of Ibsen’s classic 1882 tragedy. Set in an Oklahoma town in 2016, this play chronicles a journalist’s attempt to blow the whistle on the disastrous results of fracking while his brother, the sheriff, tries everything he can to stop him.
April 8 – 24 From $5; 8208 Brownleigh Drive; thejusticetheaterproject.org
This Ronald Harwood play is based on his own experiences working as the dresser to actor Sir Donald Wolfit. Set backstage at an English province theater production of King Lear, the play follows Norman as he attempts to prepare Wolfit, one of the last great English actors, to take the stage as World War II rages on around them.
March 25 – April 10; Various times; from $20; 107 Pullen Road; theatreinthepark.com
Junie B. Jones is Not a Crook
Inspired by the celebrated children’s book series by Barbara Park, watch as the mischievous Junie B. Jones navigates kindergarten — and the infamous idiom, “finders keepers, losers weepers.” When Junie B. finds her furry mittens stolen, she retaliates by declaring herself the “finder” of a brilliant pen of many colors, inspiring a lesson on the principles of right and wrong.
March 18 – 27; $17; 301 Pogue Street; raleighlittletheatre.org
Dance Acts to Watch
The legendary tale of Snow White and her evil stepmother comes to life with choreography by Carolina Ballet’s artistic director Zalman Raffael, complete with new sets, costumes, and of course the seven dwarfs. For this balletic interpretation of the beloved children’s story, Raffael collaborated with the award-winning composer Shinji Eshima, who also created the moving score for Bariolagein September 2019.
March 10 – 27; Various times; from $27; 2 E. South Street; carolinaballet.com
The Martha Graham Dance Company, one of the oldest American dance companies, is coming to Memorial Hall to present Diversion of Angels, Errand into the Maze, and a newly reimagined Canticle for Innocent Comedians, a classic ode to nature.
March 29; 7:30 p.m; from $29; 114 E. Cameron Avenue, Chapel Hill; carolinaperformingarts.org
Spring Tidings of Bach, Chiminade and Glass
The premier of this Bach homage from Zalman Raffael includes Lynne Taylor-Corbett’s Nine By Twelve, which uses instrumental sections from Bach’s music performed vocally by the Four Voices String Quartet. Journey with 12 collaborative dancers as they delve into the different conversations within nine Bach musical selections
April 22- 24; see website for times; from $55; carolinaballet.com
Classical Music to Catch
Head to Jones Auditorium at Meredith College for a concert dedicated to classical works composed or influenced by women, including multiple original pieces by Celka Ojakangas, an elegy to Amanda Todd from Jocelyn Morlock, Samuel Barber’s Medea, Carmen Suite II by Georges Bizet, and the event’s namesake, Joan Tower’s Fanfares for the Uncommon Woman, a response to Aaron Copland’s Fanfares for the Uncommon Man.
March 12; 7 p.m.; $27; 3800 Hillsborough Street; raleighsymphony.org
Beethoven Lives Upstairs
Follow a young Christoph and his uncle as they investigate the madman that has moved in above them (spoiler alert: it’s Beethoven) in this innovative reimagining of a classical concert. Conductor Michelle Di Russo and theatrical symphony group Classical Kids Live! bring Beethoven to life for audiences of all ages with performances of some of his most celebrating works, including Für Elise, the Ninth Symphony, and the “Moonlight” Sonata.
March 19; 1 & 4 p.m.; from $27; 2 E. South Street; ncsymphony.org
Mahler Chamber Orchestra with Mitsuko Uchida
The world-renowned ensemble Mahler Chamber Orchestra returns to Carolina Performing Arts with celebrated classical pianist and director Mitsuko Uchida and concertmaster and leader Mark Steinberg for an evening of Mozart and Purcell at Memorial Hall.
March 22; 7:30 p.m.; from $39; 114 E. Cameron Avenue, Chapel Hill; carolinaperformingarts.org
Soldiers in Song
The North Carolina Master Chorale will be joined by the United States Army Chorus for a rousing concert infused with patriotism. The lineup includes American folk songs, musical theater favorites, and classical selections from Bruckner, Schumann, and Brahams.
March 22; from $27;7 p.m., ncmasterchorale.org
Broadway Shows Coming to the Triangle
Take a trip to “where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plains” with the national tour of the Tony Award winning revival of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s most will-known show. Without any changes to the text musical theater fans know and love, this production of OKLAHOMA! is made anew for the 21st century. Daniel Fish’s re-interpretation of the show reveals deeper truths within the original text and explores the violence of the American frontier.
March 29 – April 3; From $15 plus taxes and fees; 123 Vivian Street, Durham; dpacnc.com
Based on the classic Cinderella story, Broadway’s Pretty Woman is coming to the Durham Performing Arts Center 30 years after the film first lifted hearts everywhere. With a score by Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance (Summer of ‘69, Heaven, Run to You) and choreography from Jerry Mitchell (Hairspray, Kinky Boots), Pretty Woman is sure to bring you all of the early 90s feels while still appealing to a 2022 audience. (P.S. Don’t worry, Roy Orbison and Bill Dee’s smash hit, Oh, Pretty Woman, is a featured song in the show.)
April 19-24; From $15 plus taxes and fees; 123 Vivian Street, Durham; dpacnc.com
Ring of Fire
Watch the beautiful albeit heartbreaking at times life of the legendary country music artist Johnny Cash unfold through song, dance, and narrative live at the A.J. Fletcher Opera Theater in downtown for NC Theatre’s showing of Ring of Fire. Lifelong Cash fans can expect to hear his legendary hits like Jackson, I Walk the Line, Jailhouse, and of course the play’s namesake.
April 29 & 30; From $55; 2 E South Street. Raleigh; nctheatre.com
My Fair Lady
Find an unlikely love story at Lerner and Loewe’s My Fair Lady as a young flower woman with a thick Cockney accent takes elocution lessons from a phonetics Professor. With classic songs like I Could Have Danced All Night, Wouldn’t It Be Loverly, and I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face, you probably know the show’s 1964 film adaptation starring Rex Harrison and Audrey Hepburn. Edwardian London will surround you this May at the Durham Performing Arts Center as you take your seat and hear the punchy overture for this delightful show.
May 3 – 8; From $20 plus taxes and fees; 123 Vivian Street, Durham; dpacnc.com