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University of Iowa News Release

April 12, 2004

Hancher 2004-05: Aretha Franklin To 'The Velveteen Rabbit'

Tickets are now available by mail-order for the University of Iowa Hancher Auditorium's 2004-2005 performing-arts season. Brochures -- based on the theme "We Deliver" -- were mailed to Hancher's full mailing list on April 9, so everyone who regularly receives Hancher mailings should receive a brochure soon.

The full-color brochure, which includes mail order forms, is available now from the Hancher box office -- 335-1160 in Iowa City or toll-free long-distance, 1-800-HANCHER. E-mail requests should be addressed to

Connect with the new season on the World Wide Web at, where an order form can be downloaded.

The season opens with the "Queen of Soul," Aretha Franklin, and continues with sure-fire hits including the enduringly popular Hubbard Street Dance Company, which has not performed in Hancher in more than a decade; the return of baritone heart-throb Thomas Hampson; the homecoming of the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago's "Nutcracker," which was commissioned and premiered by Hancher as "Iowa's Holiday Gift to the Nation"; the venerable Musicians from Marlboro; violin star Gidon Kremer with the Kremerata Baltica; the evergreen camp of Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo; the dazzling revival of "42nd Street"; jazz stars Brad Mehldau and Joe Lovano on a single bill; and the Prague Symphony Orchestra.

To become more accommodating to busy family schedules, Hancher will begin many of its more family-oriented events at 7:30 p.m. during the 2004-05 season.

Hancher's collaboration with the UI School of Music continues with a performance by flutist Eugenia Zukerman -- well known to viewers of "CBS Sunday Morning" -- with the UI Symphony Orchestra.

2004-05 inaugurates programming in Hancher's ambitious "Leadership and Excellence in Arts Participation" (LEAP) project, funded by the Wallace Foundation. This audience-building, family-oriented partnership with the Iowa communities of Spencer, Perry, Iowa City and Marshalltown will have its Hancher debut with the ODC/San Francisco performance of "The Velveteen Rabbit" to close out the spring 2005 schedule.

Hancher LEAPs back into summer programming in 2004-2005 with Dan Zanes, the former leader of Del Fuegos who now has dedicated his career to young audiences with what has been called "Romper Rock."

Both LEAP events -- on Mother's Day and Father's Day -- will include a family picnic, included in the ticket price.

Hancher's tradition of nurturing the arts through commissioning -- epitomized on a grand scale by the Joffrey "Nutcracker" -- is represented in 2004-05 will a Hubbard Street Dance Company co-commission.

Following the success of the 2003-2004 pre-performance dinners, Hancher will offer four dinners this season, including -- by popular request -- a weekend dinner. Dinners may be reserved in conjunction with the performances by Wycliffe Gordon, Kremerata Baltica, the Prague Symphony and Nnenna Freelon.

Advance ticket-buyers not only enjoy the best choice of seats, but also can take advantage of volume discounts on most events in the season. A simultaneous purchase of five events or more qualifies for a 15 percent discount. Purchases made before the end of June can be paid through Hancher's installment plan.

UI students, senior citizens and audience members 17 and younger also qualify for special discounts to most events. UI students and senior citizens receive a 10-percent discount on tickets to most events, with $15 Zone 2 and 3 tickets available to UI students for most events. Youth tickets are typically 30 percent off.

Hancher's top seating priority goes to Hancher Circle contributors at the $500 level and above. Contributors at this level who order tickets before May 30 receive the first seating assignments, in the order that their forms are received.

Designated parking spaces, hearing augmentation units and large print playbills are available at every event in the Hancher season. Seating for patrons who use wheelchairs is available on a limited basis; reservations are required. When possible, the auditorium will arrange to provide sign language interpretation and tape-recorded playbills; requests for these services must be made one month in advance.

Groups of 20 or more receive a special discount on tickets to most Hancher events. Call 319/335-3827.

Corporate, foundation, media and individual sponsors for 2004-05 Hancher season events through the University of Iowa Foundation include (in chronological order): Oaknoll Retirement Residence; Hartwig Motors, Inc.; Iowa State Bank and Trust Company; Shive-Hattery, Inc.; Iowa City Press-Citizen; Nancy Droll; Cantebury Inn and Suites; the Gazette; W. Richard and Joyce Summerwill; Gary A. and LaDonna K. Wicklund; Roger and Gayle Klouda; Darlene and Michael McNulty; Carl and Julie Schweser; West Music Company; William and Marlene Stanford; Richard and Judith Hurtig; John and Ellen Buchanan; University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics; Sugar Plum Visionaries; Scheels All Sports; Cambridge Place Apartments, Phyllis Miller, owner; Hills Bank and Trust Company; Sheraton Iowa City Hotel; Universal Climate Control, Thomas and Kathryn Nereim, owners; Richard and Mary Jo Stanley; Hancher Guild; Iowa House Hotel; Paul and Eta Burken; Dahl Ford of Davenport, Inc.; University of Iowa Community Credit Union; KDAT-FM; Mace and Kay Braverman, Southgate Development; Kevin and Pat Hanick; Lepic-Kroeger Realtors; OPN Architects, Inc.; William and Karen Rubright; Drs. Lisa and Amir Arbisser, Eye Surgeons Associates, Inc.; Everybody's Whole Foods; Douglas and Linda Paul; the Wallace Foundation; Hy-Vee Food Store. Waterfront Drive; Peggy Scholz.

Hancher Auditorium box office business hours are 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays. From the local calling area, dial (319) 335-1160. Long distance is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should dial (319) 335-1158, which is equipped with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.

Orders may be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge their purchases to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select the option of payroll deduction. Information and brochures may be requested by e-mail: <>.

17 Fri Aretha Franklin
18 Sat Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing Trio
22 Wed Eugenia Zukerman/UI Symphony Orchestra
29 Wed Laurie Anderson

9 Sat Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
13 Wed Lyon Opera Ballet
20 Wed Wycliffe Gordon Quartet
29 Fri Thomas Hampson

10 Wed Musicians from Marlboro, Clapp Recital Hall
18 Thu Kremerata Baltica and Gidon Kremer

9-12 Thu-Sun The Joffrey Nutcracker

26 Wed Edgar Meyer and Chris Thile
28-30 Fri-Sun 42nd Street

4 Fri Ronald K. Brown/Evidence Dance Company
16 Wed Moiseyev Dance Company
26 Sat Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo

1 Tue Brad Mehldau Trio/Joe Lovano Nonet
3 Thu National Acrobats of Taiwan
6 Sun Soweto Gospel Choir
9 Wed Prague Symphony Orchestra/Navah Perlman
31 Thu Natalie MacMaster

7 Thu St. Lawrence String Quartet, Clapp Recital Hall
9 Sat Nnenna Freelon
15 Fri Cookin'

8 Sun ODC/San Francisco, The Velveteen Rabbit,
19 Sun Dan Zanes

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail,

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073,

PHOTOS are available at