Comedy, country, dance, jazz, musicals - it's the makings of another performing arts season at Mesa Arts Center, which announced its 2008-09 schedule this week.
Notable acts include '90s one-hit wonder Duncan Sheik, who experienced a dramatic career reinvention recently with his score of the Broadway musical "Spring Awakening," which won eight Tony awards last year. Original "Spring Awakening" cast members will join Sheik, who will be performing at the center's 1,600-seat Ikeda Theater, for a concert Feb. 17.
HBO mainstay Robert Wuhl will bring his latest project, the humorous look at American history "Assume the Position," on Sept. 27. Other comedy events include the "Last Comic Standing" live tour (featuring finalists from the NBC reality show) on Oct. 4 and "Last Comic Standing" season two alumna Kathleen Madigan, performing at the 550-capacity Piper Theater, on Oct. 17.
Country music is well-represented on the docket, with Vince Gill's "Special Acoustic Evening" on Oct. 21 and "A Classic Christmas" with Wynonna Judd on Dec. 4. Country-pop crossover artist K.D. Lang is scheduled to perform Nov. 11. All three of these shows will be at the Ikeda Theater.
International culture takes the stage with Chinese acrobat/dance/martial arts show "Jungua: Descendants of the Dragon" on Oct. 16 at the Ikeda Theater, Ruby Nelda Perez's comedic "Rosita's Day of the Dead" Nov. 1-2 at Piper, the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra on Nov. 2, Spanish dance program Campania Flamenco on Nov. 28, Japanese Taiko drum group KODO on Feb. 10 and the Afro-Cuban All-Stars March 3, all at Ikeda.
The National Geographic Live speaker series will return, as will the Theater League's Broadway Series, this season including "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" (Dec. 9-10) and "Chicago" (Jan. 20-22), among others.
For the full schedule, times and prices, visit the Mesa Arts Center online at mesaartscenter.com.