MSU Riley Center announces new season


The MSU Riley Center in downtown Meridian is again bringing the best in music and theater to the stage with a 2013–2014 Fall/Winter Performing Arts Series that has an “adventurous variety” of musicians, actors and family-friendly shows.

Whether you love legendary music or prefer to hear new, contemporary sounds, whether you like serious theater or want to bring the whole family to a lighthearted show, the MSU Riley Center’s upcoming season will treat ticket holders to a wide range of exciting entertainment.

The series gets off to a strong start with two big-name music acts in September. On Friday, Sept. 13, musician Ronnie Dunn of the award-winning country-music duo Brooks & Dunn showcases his brand-new solo sound, with songs from his 2011 self-titled solo album. And, less than a week later, the Grammy-winning band Blues Traveler will be here to celebrate 25 years of hit music, performing their unique harmonica-heavy blend of rock and blues.

The crowd-pleasing music continues in the months to follow, first with a pairing of two legendary musicians, Ricky Skaggs and Bruce Hornsby with Kentucky Thunder. Skaggs’s bluegrass mandolin-picking, Hornsby’s smooth piano, and the two singers’ rich harmonies will make this a concert to remember.

Singer/pianist Michael McDonald also takes the stage in October, combining songs from his latest solo album, “Unfinished Business,” with old favorites from his hit-making years with Steely Dan and The Doobie Brothers.

Later in the season, music legend Ronnie Milsap revisits his Grand Ole Opry roots, performing from his latest album, “Country Again,” and Christmas favorites. And, in February, the Women of Ireland will wow audiences with a show that combines song, dance, and all the best of Irish tradition.

Great theater is in store for audiences, too, with an inventive production of the sci-fi classic Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury, in conjunction with The Big Read, a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. In February, Driving Miss Daisy—better known as a film but originally a Pulitzer Prize–winning play—tells the touching story of an unlikely friendship between an aging Jewish widow and her African American driver in 1950s Atlanta.

Adults and kids alike will enjoy our three family shows of the season. Stuart Little brings E. B. White’s famed book to the stage in October, with a performance by Dallas Children’s Theater. Then, just in time for the holidays, Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells will delight kids who already love the book series about this funny first-grader, while also delivering a message about the spirit of giving. Peter Pan takes flight in January, leading kids on an imaginative journey to Neverland. These three family shows are not included in the series package, but with a family-friendly ticket price of $18 for adults and $10 for students and children, theater lovers can easily add them on to their season-ticket purchase.

The Fall/Winter Series opens on Sept. 13 and runs through Feb. 28. Performances start at either 7 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. except on Sundays, when show time is 6 p.m.

Current season ticketholders must renew by Wednesday, Aug. 7, to reserve the same seats. New season-ticket buyers can purchase their packages starting Monday, Aug. 12. Our popular “build your own package” option, which includes a discount and early seating, is available for those who wish to purchase tickets to three or more shows. Tickets for these packages can be purchased starting Monday, Aug. 19. Tickets for individual shows go on sale Monday, Aug. 26.

Tickets and information are available by phone or in person at the MSU Riley Center box office Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and one hour before show time on the day of a show. The telephone number to call is 601-696-2200, and the address is 2200 Fifth Street in downtown Meridian.

Additional details about the upcoming season are online at

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