Ok, so maybe it doesn’t feel like spring yet, but that’s not stopping us from eagerly anticipating this season at GSU’s Rialto Center for the Arts. Below, take a sneak peek at the venue’s educational and entertaining programming for the next few months!

Feed Your Senses: Tia Rix
January 15 at 12pm
Every third Wednesday of the month, the Rialto invites artists or speakers into the lobby to give a lunchtime seminar on their profession. To kick off 2020’s Feed Your Senses season, jazz singer Rix shares her talents and insights with Rialto patrons.

From the company:
The daughter of Atlanta jazz legends Bob and Phyllis Rix, Tia began recording commercials and soundtracks at age 13. She traveled west to earn her degree and train at Brigham Young University with world-renowned tenors Ray Arbizu and Terry McCombs, then sang her way through Scandinavia, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany. Despite her classical music education, Tia’s passion has always been jazz. She’s sung at Birdland, Smoke’s, Mezzrow’s and sat in with some of the greats, NYC, NY pianist Johnny O’Neal with whom she recorded her first CD, Dragonfly; NYC, NY bassist Steve Doyle; and Teaneck, NJ guitarist Russell Malone. You can catch her performing live at the numerous jazz venues around Atlanta such as the Velvet Note, Churchill Grounds Pop-Up Jam at Ten ATL and Brew and Bird, Venkman’s, Apres Diem, and Red Light Cafe. World class jazz trumpeter, Art Hoyle, featured soloist with Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Quincy Jones and Henry Mancini said of Tia “that this is the voice of the female Chet Baker.” Tia’s CD Dragonfly can be purchased on CD Baby.

About those tickets…
FREE

An Evening with Eric Whitacre
February 4 at 7:30pm
The renowned artist will conduct an evening of his music with GSU’s Choral and Wind Ensembles.

From the company:
Grammy-winning composer and conductor Eric Whitacre is one of the most popular musicians of his generation. Millions of amateur and professional musicians alike have performed his concert music throughout the world, while his groundbreaking Virtual Choirs have united singers from over 120 different countries. Join Georgia State University’s Choral and Wind Ensembles for an evening of Eric Whitacre’s music, conducted by the composer himself.

About those tickets…
SOLD OUT

Johnny Mercer Tribute*
February 7 at 8pm
Joe Grandsden and special guest Tierney Sutton bring the music of the legendary songwriter to Atlanta.

From the company:
It has been said that it is almost impossible to get through the day without hearing one Johnny Mercer song—and why would you want to? Georgia’s own Johnny Mercer wrote the lyrics to over 1,700 songs, including four Academy Award-winners. From the light-hearted “You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby” and “Jeepers Creepers” to the cinematic “Hooray for Hollywood” and the timeless “Moon River,” Mercer wrote words and music for an American century. Hard-bop trumpeter and vocalist Joe Gransden and special guest Tierney Sutton, join the Georgia State University Jazz band, will pay tribute to Mercer’s incomparable legacy by performing a selection of his many hits.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $20.40-$52 (plus applicable fees).

Terence Blanchard Featuring the E-Collective
February 15 at 8pm
The trumpeter brings his musical stylings alongside four up and coming musicians to rock the walls of the Rialto.

From the company:
Many were moved by composer and trumpeter Terence Blanchard ’s Grammy-Award winning album A TALE OF GOD’S WILL (A Requiem For Katrina). Blanchard believes “music and art have the power to change hearts and souls”— a belief brought to life through the music of Blanchard and his E-Collective. This revolutionary ensemble thrives off the perfect mixture of Blanchard’s genius and the innovations of four young musical pioneers: guitarist Charles Altura, pianist Fabian Almazan, bassist David ‘DJ’ Ginyard Jr., and drummer Oscar Seaton.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $39.10-$74 (plus applicable fees).

MYSO Atlanta Winter Concert
February 16 at 3pm
Now in their 30th anniversary season, the Metropolitan Youth Symphony Orchestras of Atlanta take the stage for a special night of music from the generation who represent the future of the arts.

From the company:
MYSO is dedicated to providing exceptional music-making in a supportive environment fostering creativity and camaraderie while instilling in its members a life-long love of music in its members. Visit www.mysoatlanta.org for more information about auditions and other upcoming events.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $6-$15.

Ché Malambo*
February 22 at 8pm
An evening of exciting Argentinian song and dance featuring Malambo traditions returns to the Rialto stage.

From the company:
The all-male company celebrates the unique South American cowboy tradition of the gaucho. Ché Malambo excites audiences with their precise footwork (zapeto), intense drumming of the bombos and the incredible whirling of the boleadoras (lassos with stones on the end)–presenting a thrilling dance and music spectacle unlike anything you have ever experienced!

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $28.90-$58 (plus applicable fees).

Dee Dee Bridgewater*
March 7 at 8pm
The jazz vocalist brings her award-winning talents to the Rialto stage for a classy night of standards and adventurous interpretations.

From the company:
Over the course of her multifaceted career spanning four decades, three-time Grammy winner and Tony Award-winning jazz vocalist Bridgewater has ascended to the upper echelon of vocalists, putting her unique spin on standards, as well as taking intrepid leaps of faith in re-envisioning jazz classics. She has worked with the legendary Thad Jones/Mel Louis Big Band, and performed with such jazz notables as Max Roach, Sonny Rollins, Dexter Gordon and Dizzy Gillespie. In addition to her many accomplishments as a jazz artist, Bridgewater had a parallel career in musical theatre, winning a Tony Award for her role as “Glinda” in The Wiz. In 2017 she was the recipient of the NEA Jazz Masters Fellows Award.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $47.60-$84.

Feed Your Senses: Luther Enloe
March 18 at 12pm
Enloe gives an inside look at classical guitar from his unique perspective, drawing on a diverse and creative take on the art form.

From the company:
Possessing a distinctively resonant sound quality, lyrical phrasing, and technical finesse, classical guitarist Luther Enloe has received acclaim for the expressive command of his live performances from both concert presenters and audience members alike. Luther Enloe’s programs offer an exciting variety of Spanish and Latin American masterpieces as well as contemporary works from the U.S.A. that can be appreciated by all audiences. Luther will be releasing a new album in 2020.

About those tickets…
FREE

Sangam 2020
March 21 at 6:30pm
World Music USA presents a rich concert featuring three genres of music and a diverse group of multi-cultural musicians.

From the company:
Sangam, a world music concert, is a performance of traditional, folk and contemporary music by twelve of Atlanta’s finest South Asian and jazz musicians. Sangam means confluence, commingling, coming together. The concert is sponsored by World Music USA under the direction of composer Jayanta Pathak. Pathak’s original compositions are featured in the program. Acclaimed Indian Semiclassical vocalist Preeti Uttam and America’s Songbird, jazz vocalist Myrna Clayton headline the show. They are joined by Jez Graham on piano, Eamon Dutta on guitar, Emrah Kotan on percussion, Souryadeep Bhattacharyya on sarod, Wilgens Pierre on bass, Marla Feeny on saxophone, violin and English horn, Priyal Shah on keyboard, Anjaneya Sastri on tabla and Court Tatum on drums.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $21.25-$75 (plus applicable fees).

Capitol Steps*
March 28 at 8pm
They’ve “put the ‘mock’ in Democracy,” for over 35 years, and they’re coming back to Atlanta.

The Capitol Steps return to the Rialto with fresh new material straight from the current headlines. They’ve been featured on NBC, CBS, ABC and PBS. Started by a group of Senate staffers, the Capitol Steps still operates under their founding directive: all points on the political spectrum are welcomed and dutifully skewered. Known for their equal opportunity lampooning, the Steps always deliver an evening of “unpresidented” musical political satire straight from the current headlines. “Everyone’s politics get spoofed and everybody leaves laughing!”

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $39.10-$74 (plus applicable fees).

Susannah*
April 10-11 at 8pm, April 12 at 3pm
The Georgia State University Opera Theater presents the Appalachian-influenced opera, under the direction of Carroll Freeman.

From the company:
Written by Carlisle Floyd during the McCarthy era, Susannah is loosely based on the Apocryphal tale of Susannah and the Elders. The two-act opera focuses on 18-year-old Susannah Polk, an innocent girl who is targeted as a sinner in the small mountain town of New Hope Valley, Tennessee. The music is largely characterized by Appalachian folk melodies. The opera includes some Protestant hymns and some traditional classical music. Susannah is one of the most performed American operas, second only to Porgy and Bess.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $12.75-$25 (plus applicable fees).

Feed Your Senses: Julian Reid
April 15 at 12pm
FYS welcomes the multitalented pianist to share his talents and vast knowledge of his art.

From the company:
Hailing from Chicago, Julian Reid grew up studying classical and jazz piano at Merit School of Music’s Conservatory and playing classical, jazz, and gospel piano around the city. That diverse upbringing would prepare him for a diverse career in music-making. His current focus is in Black gospel and jazz. He is an assistant music director at Kelley Chapel United Methodist Church in Decatur, GA and a founding member of The JuJu Exchange, a genre-bending group with one foot in jazz and one foot in everything else. He has also created with Chance the Rapper, Peter CottonTale, Josephine Lee and the Chicago Children’s Choir, the Clark Atlanta University Choir, Strivers Row, and Abiodun Oyewole, one of the Last Poets. Julian holds a Master’s of Divinity degree from Candler School of Theology at Emory University. There he focused on Theology and the Arts under the tutelage of Drs. James Abbington, Dwight Andrews, Don Saliers, and Greg Ellison. Prior to Candler, Julian completed his undergraduate studies in philosophy at Yale University, where he wrote a thesis about the political nature of jazz.

About those tickets…
FREE

Tom Scott and the GSU Jazz Band*
April 24 at 8pm
Under the direction of Jazz Studies head Dr. Gordon Vernick, the student ensemble adds Scott to their repertoire of prestigious guest artists.

From the company:
Grammy-winning saxophonist, Tom Scott is a renowned composer, arranger, producer, music director and educator. Scott’s 33 solo recordings have earned him 3 Grammy awards. His career as a guest artist spans over 500 recordings with the likes of Barbara Streisand, Quincy Jones, Thelonious Monk, Frank Sinatra, Aretha Franklin, the Blues Brothers, Aerosmith and many more. In addition to composing film and TV scores, Scott’s massive body of work includes soundtracks for Taxi Driver, The Jerk, Sea of Love, Toy Story, and A Star is Born, to name a few. He conducts Master Classes in Woodwinds, Arranging & Film Composing, and is currently on the faculty of the New York University Summer Jazz program.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $20.40-$52 (plus applicable fees).

Eva Ayllón*
April 25 at 8pm
The Grammy-nominated “Queen of Afro-Peruvian Soul” takes the stage at the Rialto.

From the company:
Ayllón’s repertoire ranges from the romantic Spanish songs known as “valses” of coastal Peru to the distinctive rhythms brought by African slaves: the sensual lando, the throbbing festejo, and the bawdy, insouciant alcatraz. Recognized as the leading exponent of Afro-Peruvian music, Ayllón has 4 platinum records, 10 gold records, and two Latin Grammy nominations for “Eva” Leyenda Peruana” (Eva! Peruvian Legend) and “To My Country,” an album she recorded with Los Hijos del Sol and Alex Acuña.

About those tickets…
Click here to purchase from $39.10-$74 (plus applicable fees).

For more information, visit the Rialto’s event page here.

*Indicates a Rialto Series Performance

Photos courtesy of Rialto Center for the Arts

About Sally Henry

A writer with a passion for building relationships and telling people's stories, Sally Henry is a freelance arts and entertainment journalist. She has had the privilege of interviewing both local theatre professionals and multi-award-winning celebrities including Carol Burnett, Matthew Morrison, and Taylor Hicks. With theatre journalism experience since 2011, her work has been featured on BroadwayWorld.com, the Huffington Post, and the Kennedy Center's American College Theatre Festival.

View all posts by Sally Henry