Entertainment and Arts

 

Berks Arts Council

Keeping the Arts ALIVE in Greater Reading!

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Berks Youth Chorus

The mission of the Berks Youth Chorus is to enrich our community by fostering and promoting choral excellence in young people through music education and quality performances. Since 1992, the young musicians of the Berks Youth Chorus have delighted audiences with their superb artistry and joyful enthusiasm. Through a rigorous music curriculum, BCCC singers acquire an outstanding education and learn crucial life lessons-like teamwork, time management, priority setting, self-presentation, communication and personal responsibility. And the culturally diverse, musically diverse repertoire performed with precision by these trained young voices is inspirational and uplifting for anyone who listens. With its headquarters and rehearsals located in Reading's geographically accessible GoggleWorks, BYC is dedicated to making life-changing musical opportunities accessible to all children.

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Genesius Theatre

The mission of the Genesius Theatre is that the best theatre is an experience of living and feeling, changing and growing, challenging and becoming. We trust in the power of this inspiring and dynamic medium to transform the artists who create it, the audiences who enjoy it, and the patrons who support it. We exist to produce and present entertainment in all phases of the performing arts that entertains audiences, educates and trains artists, nurtures emerging art, and enriches the cultural community for people of all ages in Berks County.

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GoggleWorks Center for the Arts

The GoggleWorks offers 145,000 square feet of dynamic space, including: galleries; classrooms; dance and music studios; a darkroom; a glass blowing facility, plus a warm and cold glass studio/classroom; a woodshop; ceramics and jewelry studios; a 131-seat film theatre; a cafe; community meeting places; 34 artist studios where working artists educate the public about using their process and means of expressing themselves through their art; and offices for 26 local community arts and cultural organizations. The GoggleWorks is a community art and cultural resource center for Berks County and Central and Southeastern Pennsylvania, and is the largest, most comprehensive interactive arts center of its kind in the country. The mission of the GoggleWorks is "to nurture the arts, foster creativity, promote education and enrich the community." The artists and arts-based organizations housed within the building are all committed to renewing and revitalizing the community. Thousands of visitors experience the dynamic GoggleWorks campus at community open houses on the 2nd Sunday of every month by touring artist's studios, participating in workshops, observing dance and music performances and attending exhibition openings in the distinctive galleries. The arts center also runs after-school programs attended by over 300 children from the area, and offers classes, music and dance lessons, summer camps, and family activities. There is no admission fee and plenty of free parking.

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Kutztown University Presents

KU Presents! strives to be the center of cultural life at Kutztown University and the regional community through professional presentations of innovative and engaging live music, theater, and dance of the highest quality.

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Miller Center for the Arts

The Miller Center for the Arts, located on the campus of Reading Area Community College, has become an anchor in the city of Reading's cultural landscape. Our 509-seat theatre offers quality programming for all ages and interests. Whether you would like to see modern dance, improv comedy or a children's show, the Miller Center has something for everyone.

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Reading Choral Society

The Reading Choral Society is comprised of dedicated amateur singers from all walks of life, and all ages. Determined to present the highest calibre musical performances possible, the 75-voice Society rehearses weekly in a professional atmosphere, fulfilling the lives of its members by immersing them in great music, and through RCS performances enriching and enlivening the musical life of the greater Reading community.

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Reading Civic Theatre

The Reading Civic Theater strives to produce great theatrical entertainment by living up to their motto of "Bringing the Best of Broadway to Berks".

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Reading Community Players

Reading Community Players is now in its 90th year and one of the oldest community theaters in the state. Founded in 1920, is a non-profit, volunteer organization bringing affordable, quality theater to Berks County.

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Reading Musical Foundation

Established in 1926 by a team of local music enthusiasts who recognized the importance of ensuring our community's cultural health, RMF has been supporting music education, preservation and local music presenters for nearly 80 years. Their dedication, passion for music and our community, and willingness to "play" by working hard set the standard for RMF. RMF is a public non-profit foundation supported primarily by you - individuals, businesses and partner foundations. The full 100% of your contributions are reinvested in support of music education and outreach programs, music presenters and concert events in Berks County. In addition, RMF is by far the largest source of financial assistance for committed county music students who audition on merit or demonstrate financial need.

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Reading Philharmonic Orchestra

The Reading Philharmonic Orchestra was organized in May 1932 by the Reading Recreation Department with H. Augustus Meyer as conductor. In 1962, Wes Fisher became Music Director, and through his efforts, The Reading Philharmonic Orchestra became an affiliate of The Reading Musical Foundation, and was the first group to perform in the outdoor concert series at the Reading Museum. The group continues to be sponsored by the Reading Musical Foundation and starts the Museum outdoor concert series on the first Sunday in June. In 1997, the Orchestra honored 5 conductors who were influential in the group's development: J. Carl Borelli, Wes Fisher, Henry Gass, Nicholas Geracimos, and Hiram Hoch. Many students and professional players gained valuable experience from and contributed their talents to the group. The Reading Philharmonic Orchestra consists of musicians of all ages and experience, and includes one of the original members among its numbers. Students of all ages, teachers, and experienced musicians are members. It is an ideal setting for students desiring orchestral experience, adult beginners, adults who wish to resume playing, and experienced musicians who enjoy playing and serve as mentors and leaders for the group. There have been and continue to be family members and spouses in the group and friendships with the common goal of making music are formed.

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Reading Pops Orchestra

The Reading Pops Orchestra was formally established in 1969 by Mr. Wes Fisher who had gathered local musicians for performances at the City Park Band Shell and various outdoor locations. The leadership has changed over the years, but the appeal of Pops music is timeless, evident by the annual appearances at the Father's Day Concert under the Linden Tree at the Reading Public Museum, Muhlenberg Fine Arts Day, and Gring's Mill. With the addition of the Dinner Concert Series, begun in 1996, the RPO continues to draw ever growing audiences and appreciation of this musical art form.

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Reading Symphony Orchestra

The Reading Symphony Orchestra, approaching its ninety-seventh season as one of the longest continuously-operating symphonies in the United States, provides and promotes high quality symphonic music to the citizens of Reading and Berks County.

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Ringgold Band

The historic Ringgold Band is proud to be one of America's first community bands. Formed in 1852 amid the rolling hills and farms of Berks County, Pa., we continue a longstanding tradition of fine musical entertainment in southeastern Pennsylvania.

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Santander Arena

The Santander Arena, formerly known as the Sovereign Center, is managed by SMG and first opened its doors in September of 2001. Since then it has hosted over 2200 shows in a wide range of genres. The arena, which seats up to 8800 for concerts and 7200 for hockey, is home to the Reading Royals of the ECHL. Besides sporting events, the Santander Arena has hosted hundreds of concerts and other forms of entertainment targeted to all age ranges. A few of the previous performers have included Neil Diamond, Carrie Underwood, Tim McGraw, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Godsmack, the Blue Man Group, Kenney Chesney, Matchbox 20, the American Idol Tour, WWE, Cher, Elton John, Champions on Ice, Rod Stewart, Sting, Kid Rock, multiple Disney on Ice shows, Andre Rieu, Evanesence, Professional Bull Riders, and many others.

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Santander Performing Arts Center

The Santander Performing Arts Center was built in the 1870s as a market, with a Masonic Temple on its upper floors. It became the Academy of Music in 1886. The Rajah Shriners purchased it in 1917 to use the building for various activities including vaudeville, motion pictures, and live appearances. The auditorium was rebuilt in 1921 after a fire destroyed most of the facility. It is now a venue for quality symphonic, opera, ballet, popular music, and theatrical performances. At the turn of the 21st Century, the Rajah Theater was the only downtown movie palace of its kind to survive. Its sister palaces, the Astor, Embassy and Loew's Colonial, had all been demolished. In June of 2000, the Berks County Convention Center Authority purchased the Rajah Theater from the Shriners. The building was renovated and renamed the Sovereign Performing Arts Center. The $7 million renovations included a new air conditioning system, seating that is more comfortable, better stage equipment, improved dressing rooms, and more. These improvements, along with the building being managed by SMG, ensure that this historical center for performing arts will be preserved for years to come. Today, the Santander Performing Arts Center is home to the Reading Symphony Orchestra and the Broadway on 6th Street series. It has also hosted numerous different events. Willie Nelson, Hillary Duff, Jerry Seinfeld, David Copperfield, and Sesame Street Live are just a few of the shows that have been seen at the theater.

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Studio B

Studio B is a community-run art center built in conjunction with the Arts & Activities Alliance of Building A Better Boyertown.

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The Domino Players

The Domino Players, Albright Colleg's resident theatre company, is comprised of both students and faculty. The group engages in some of the most stylistic, cutting-edge, avant-garde performances of both contemporary and traditional theatre ever created.

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