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Clowes lineup: Whoopi, The Onion, Mellencamp musical

May 16, 2013

Upping its game for its 50th anniversary season, Clowes Hall has populated its 2013/2014 lineup with returning high-profile acts and some newbies to the Butler U. stage.

The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra returns to Clowes with a concert of Pixar movie music. Colbie Caillat and Kenny Loggins team up. Whoopi Goldberg follows with an undefined program. And Gustavo Ramirez Sansano, formerly of Luna Negra Dance Theater, choreographs a new piece for Butler Ballet in conjunction with string sensation Mark O'Conner performing with Butler's Jazz Ensemble, Symphonic Orchestra and Percussion Ensemble.

That's just for starters. The legendary Cuban musical ensemble Buena Vista Social Club performs. John Lithgow offers his "Stories by Heart," which weaves together tales by P.G. Wodehouse and Ring Lardner with the actor's own tales. Bela Fleck comes back, this time with Brooklyn Rider. The Martha Graham Dance Company and Motionhouse both dance on the Clowes stage. Irish-music's Danu and The Johnny Clegg Band with Ladysmith Black Mambazo come through. Blue Man Group returns.

The biggest wildcards are in the Clowes Off-Center series. A live version of the satiric newspaper The Onion offers take-no-prisoners comedy. The comic-book-inspired Intergalactic Nemesis pays a repeat visit. And a hybrid of film clips, live action and music add up to "Tarantino in Concert," starring Tracie Thoms (but, alas, not Tarantino himself).

Perhaps most interesting to music and theater fans, "Ghost Brothers of Darkland County," the John Mellencamp/Stephen King/T-Bone Burnett musical, plays the hall as part of its national tour.

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