Thursday, December 5, 2013


The 34th annual Ashland University Spectrum Series begins by travelling back in time to the 19th century with the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra presenting their holiday program 'Round the Christmas Tree on Friday, December 6, 7:30 p.m. at Hugo Young Theatre.

This stylish and warm-hearted tribute to America’s Holiday musical traditions features favorite selections from the theatres, ballrooms, grand mansions and humble hearthsides of the Victorian era. The concert will include familiar Christmas songs and carols from their original 19th century scores, along with novelties including a ragtime version of the Nutcracker Suite and sparkling instrumental and vocal soloists. As a finale to the concert, the Orchestra accompanies a screening of one of the world’s first Christmas silent films from 1905 by Thomas Edison.

In addition to the main stage concert, the Orchestra's conductor Rick Benjamin, will present a free workshop on the history of early cinema and film underscoring on Friday, December 6 at 10 a.m. on the Hugo Young Theatre stage.  Benjamin, leading conductor of music for silent film with more than 600 screenings to his credit, will lead participants on a journey to the early 20th Century when downtown Ashland was home to several silent movie houses as the cultural center for all ages in the community.  

Area schools, senior citizen organizations and other groups are invited to a special 1-hour matinee performance of 'Round the Christmas Tree on December 6 at 1:30 p.m. Admission for this intergenerational matinee performance is $2 per person.  Reservations should be made directly with Tricia Applegate at 419.289.5950 to secure group seating.

Season tickets are now available for the entire Spectrum Series at the Ashland University Box Office.  Season tickets include admission to all three mainstage shows with at least a 20 percent discount to single ticket prices.  Season tickets for all three performances are: $28 for adults; and $23 for senior citizens, non- Ashland University students and Ashland University faculty/staff.  Single tickets are: $15 for adults; $12 for senior citizens, non-Ashland University students, University faculty/staff; $10 for groups of 10 or more; and $2 for Ashland University students with ID.

To purchase season or individual tickets, contact the Ashland University Box Office by phone at 419-289-5125, or in person in the lobby of Hugo Young Theatre located at the corner of College Avenue and Grant Street.  Hours are Monday through Friday, 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.  Tickets are also available on-line at where additional fees apply. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Under the direction of Leonard Salvo, Ashland University Director of Bands, the Ashland Area Community Concert Band (AACCB) and Ashland University Wind Ensemble present their annual Winter Festival Concert on Saturday, December 7, 7:30 p.m. at the University’s Hugo Young Theatre.  Featuring music celebrating the holiday season and reflecting on the events of December 7, the concert is free and open to the public.

The 40-piece Ashland University Wind Ensemble is comprised of the outstanding wind and percussion players at the University and from the community.  The ensemble begins Saturday's concert with Anthony Iannaccone's "Plymouth Trilogy" comprised of three contrasting movements including a saxophone solo, followed by Hymn of St. James by Reber Clark which is based on the hymn "Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence." The Wind Ensemble concludes their portion of the program with Leroy Anderson's "Sleigh Ride," one of the world's most popular pieces of Christmas music.

After a brief intermission, the 55-member Ashland Area Community Concert Band takes the stage. Established in 1993, the ensemble is designed for both university students and members of the Ashland community to continue their musical study and creative activity.  In 1995, it was recognized by Cleveland's WCLV FM as "one of Ohio's finest Community Concert Bands."  The Band begins their program with "Midway March" by John Williams followed by Claude T. Smith's arrangement of "God of Our Fathers."  The third piece of the program includes selections from Lionel Bart's delightful musicalOliver! including Consider Yourself, Where Is Love, I'd Do Anything and Who Will Buy. The Band will then perform Robert Palmer's "Overture on a Southern Hymn" which is based on one of the most popular Southern folk hymn tunes "Wondrous Love."  The concert concludes with Robert Sheldon's arrangement A Most Wonderful Christmas which includes Winter Wonderland, I'll Be Home for Christmas, Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, and It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year