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Seven Premier Dayton Performing Arts Organizations Come Together for the First Time Ever on Stage For Two Nights Only to Present “American Mosaic”

Arts Groups Join Together to Celebrate 50th Anniversary of The Miriam Rosenthal Foundation for the Arts

Communications & Media Manager

Dayton Performing Arts Alliance
Phone 937-224-3521 x 1138

DAYTON, OH (September 9, 2015) – Dayton Performing Arts Alliance’s 2015–2016 Ascend Season explodes onto the Mead Theatre stage with “American Mosaic,” a spectacular program showcasing Dayton Opera, Dayton Ballet and Dayton Philharmonic, the three crown jewels of the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance.  Dayton Opera proudly presents “American Mosaic” on Saturday, September 19, 2015 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, September 20, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. at the Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center in downtown Dayton.  Dayton Ballet Artistic Director Karen Russo Burke, Dayton Opera Artistic Director Thomas Bankston, and Dayton Philharmonic Artistic Director and Conductor Neal Gittleman once again join forces to present an outstanding night of music, song, and dance.

For this sensational performance, in addition to Dayton Ballet, Dayton Opera, and Dayton Philharmonic, four other Dayton performing arts organizations will share the stage as Dayton pays tribute to the 50th anniversary of the Miriam Rosenthal Foundation for the Arts.  Never before have so many powerful forces in Dayton’s vibrant arts scene combined to such great effect! Where else but the Schuster Center could one experience the Dayton Ballet, Dayton Opera, Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Bach Society of Dayton, Human Race Theatre Company, Muse Machine, and Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (DCDC) all under one star-studded ceiling?

In “American Mosaic,” Dayton Opera is thrilled to present amazing works by some of the greatest American composers. Dayton Opera is led by Artistic Director Thomas Bankston, who has masterfully martialed the forces of these seven Dayton arts organizations to produce an unforgettable night in the Schuster center.  Concertgoers will be captivated by Dayton Opera performances of “Willow” and “Warm as the Autumn” from Douglas Moore’s The Ballad of Baby Doe,  the “Revival Scene” from Carlisle Floyd’s Susannah, and three fantastic selections from Aaron Copland’s remarkable and only opera The Tender Land.  Dayton Ballet joins Dayton Opera to bring these excerpts to vivid life. 

Dayton Ballet then pays further tribute to Copland with gorgeous dances to selections from The Red Pony, based on the famous novel by John Steinbeck.  Dayton Ballet holds its place in America as the second-oldest ballet company, celebrating its 78th anniversary this season.  Artistic Director Karen Russo Burke has choreographed beautiful dances for “American Mosaic” to allow each of her dancers the opportunity to shine on stage in this season opening performance.

The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of Maestro Gittleman, will provide the accompaniment to these American treasures and will also delight audience members as it opens the evening with Steve Winteregg’s Celebration and, in the second half, the overture to Jule Styne’s Gypsy.  In fact, Dayton Philharmonic revels in the spotlight for the evening, providing the score to most of the performances in the production.

Joining Dayton Opera to present this tribute to American composers are two guest artists ready to bring the house down with spectacular vocal performances. Soprano Deborah Selig returns to Dayton Opera for her third appearance, having joined Dayton Opera previously as Amy in Little Women in 2005 and Adele in Die Fledermaus in 2006.  Ms. Selig studied at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and has earned critical acclaim for her rich, shimmering voice and her excellent artistic instincts. Ms. Selig is set to return once again to Dayton Opera this upcoming spring in the exciting double bill of The Book Collector and Carmina Burana. 

Bass vocalist Nathan Stark also takes the stage for his third appearance with Dayton Opera, having previously sung the roles of Friar Laurence in Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet in 2012 and Hunding in Wagner’s Die Walkure, Act I, in the 2013 The Glory of Wagner production.  Mr. Stark holds degrees from California State University, Long Beach and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.  He has been praised by the Washington Post as having a voice of “unearthly power.”

Providing a choral force on stage for the first half of the program and the ending finale are the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra Chorus, directed by Hank Dahlman, and the Dayton Opera Chorus, led by Chorus Master Jeffrey Powell.

In the second half of the program, audiences will experience compelling theater from The Human Race Theatre Company (HRTC) under the direction of Artistic Director Kevin Moore.  The Human Race Theatre Company, Dayton’s regional professional theatre company, enjoys a growing reputation and national recognition for excellence in theatre. In “American Mosaic,” HRTC performs excerpts from Robert Harling’s Steel Magnolias and Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie, as well as “The Impossible Dream” from Mitch Leigh’s The Man of La Mancha. 

The Bach Society of Dayton will then present the stirring “The God Who Gave Us Life” and “I Shall Not Die Without Hope” from Randall Thompson’s Testament of Freedom.  The Bach Society of Dayton, led by Music Director John Neely, has established a reputation for artistic collaboration and inspiring performances of the greatest classical works for chorus and orchestra. 

Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (DCDC) will take the stage next to dance two excerpts from Three Black Kings, the last major work written by the legendary Duke Ellington.  DCDC, led by Artistic Director Debbie Blunden-Diggs, is renowned for its extraordinary artistic execution, dance precision and storytelling through dance of international standard. These two dances to Three Black Kings are choreographed by DCDC’s impeccable Crystal Michelle.

Talented young performers of Muse Machine will enthrall audiences with a beautiful version of Paul Simon’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water.” Muse Machine, led by Executive Director Mary Campbell-Zopf, is a nationally recognized arts education organization with a mission to change the lives of young people through the arts.

For the program’s electrifying finale, all seven performing arts organizations will join together for a show-stopping performance of Floyd Werle’s “The Story of ‘Battle Hymn of the Republic,’” which concludes with the favorite arrangement of the “Battle Hymn” by Peter J. Wilhousky.

It is the intense passion and generosity of Miriam Rosenthal and her inspiration to the arts community in Dayton that has made it possible for this citywide performing arts collaboration of “American Mosaic” to come to life this September.  Glory, glory, hallelujah, indeed!

Tickets for “American Mosaic” range from $38 to $94 and are available at Ticket Center Stage (937) 228-3630 or online at  Senior, teacher, student, and military discounts are available at the box office. For more information or to order subscriptions, including flexible subscription types that include all three DPAA art forms, please call (937) 228-3630 or visit online at


About the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance
The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance was formed in July 2012 as the result of a groundbreaking and innovative merger between the Dayton Ballet, the Dayton Opera, and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. Together, they are the largest performing arts organization in the community, offering a tremendous variety of performance and education programs and setting a new standard for artistic excellence.  Dayton Performing Arts Alliance performances are made possible in part by Montgomery County and Culture Works, the single largest source of community funds for the arts and culture in the Miami Valley. The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance also receives partial funding from the Ohio Arts Council, a state agency created to foster and encourage the development of the arts and to preserve Ohio's cultural heritage. Funding from the Ohio Arts Council is an investment of state tax dollars that promotes economic growth, educational excellence, and cultural enrichment for all Ohio residents.  The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance is proud to be one of five performing arts organizations in the country selected to receive a three-year "Music Alive" grant from New Music USA and the League of American Orchestras.
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