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World-class performances in Wright Auditorium!

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Branford Marsalis and Kurt Elling

Branford Marsalis Quartet with special guest Kurt Elling

RESCHEDULED Wednesday, March 15, 2017 at 8:00 pm

The Branford Marsalis Quartet joins the Grammy-winning vocalist Kurt Elling in a collaboration of musical forces. Marsalis on saxophones, Joey Calderazzo on piano, Eric Revis on bass and Justin Faulkner on drums rarely invite other musicians into the folds of their nearly telepathic cohesive unit. But Elling’s deep jazz vocabulary, technical versatility and outstanding intonation will enable the band to perform a variety of material in new ways. The collaboration between jazz’s most intense band and one of jazz’s foremost singers will prove to be anything but standard. It’s a not-to-be-missed event. 

Hot Sardines

The Hot Sardines Holiday Stomp

Sunday, December 4, 2016 at 4:00 pm

The Sardine sound – wartime Paris via New Orleans, or the other way around – is steeped in hot jazz, salty stride piano, and the kind of music Louis Armstrong, Django Reinhardt and Fats Waller used to make: Straight-up, foot-stomping jazz. (Literally – the band includes a tap dancer whose feet count as two members of the rhythm section). In Holiday Stomp, the Sardines infuse yuletide classics with lesser-known gems such as Ella Fitzgerald’s “Santa Claus Got Stuck in My Chimney.” Expect plenty of surprises along the merry way!


VIDEO: This is the song that made us fall in love with the Sardines when we caught them at Joe's Pub in New York. 

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National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine

National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine

Thursday, February 2, 2017 at 8:00 pm

With more than 100 recordings to their credit since 1993, the NSOU is considered to be one of the finest symphony orchestras in Europe. Prokofiev, Shostakovich and Khatchaturian entrusted this ensemble with their premier performances, and soloists have included Rubinstein, Stern, Rostropovich and Jose Carreras. ECU’s program includes the Rachmaninov Symphony No. 3, Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 featuring pianist Alexei Grynyuk and Stravinsky’s “Suite” from Firebird.
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Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

Saturday, February 11, 2017 at 8:00 pm

The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir is one of the best-known choirs in the world. Founded in 1981, their repertoire extends from Gregorian chant and baroque to the music of the 21st century. They’ve performed with the Norwegian, Australian, Lithuanian, Prague and Stuttgardt Chamber Orchestras; and the London Symphony, Mahler Chamber, Berlin Rundfunk orchestras, among others. With 14 Grammy nominations and two wins, they’re a sure bet. The program, the Orthodox Tradition, features excerpts of vespers and vigils from Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov and more.


VIDEO: Hear the power of this small choir, coupled with introductory interviews.  

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Russian National Ballet Theatre

Russian National Ballet Theatre

Friday, March 31, 2017 at 8:00 p.m.

In 1994, the legendary Bolshoi principal dancer Elena Radchenko was selected by presidential decree to assume the permanent artistic directorship of the Russian National Ballet Theatre. She has upheld the grand national tradition of the Russian ballet. Enjoy “Stars of the Russian Ballet,” a gala program featuring ten excerpts including selections from Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty and Romeo and Juliet, Prokofiev’s Cinderella and perhaps the most famous solo dance ever, “the Dying Swan.”
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The Nile Project

The Nile Project

Added attraction: Friday, April 7, 2017 at 8:00 p.m.

NPR named the Nile Project’s debut recording one of five “Must Hear International Albums.” Witness one of the tightest cross-cultural collaborations in history, with artists from the 11 Nile countries showcasing the rich diversity of one of the oldest places on earth. Buzzing timbres and ingenious polyrhythms support vocals in more than ten languages. Instruments that parted ways millennia before are reunited and pushed into new places. Love songs have crossed geographic and linguistic barriers to forge new, close friendships. Added attraction, general admission seating. Limited tickets available. Purchase at a discount with a subscription.

VIDEO: Live performance from the 2015 tour. 

VIDEO: Artistic director Mina Girgis and Meklit Hadero explain The Nile Project.

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About the Series

The S. Rudolph Alexander Performing Arts Series effectively began when Rudy Alexander arrived at East Carolina in 1962 and bundled four student-selected classical offerings as a subscription package. Since that date, the series has presented more than 500 world-class artists and served more than one million patrons, university and K-12 students through its programming.

Today, the series continues a tradition of presenting the best performing arts touring attractions available for the enjoyment of regional audiences and the edification of ECU students. Behind the scenes, our guest artists are actively engaged in master classes and workshops.

The series is presented in the 1,483-seat Wright Auditorium located at the core of East Carolina University's main campus.

All dates, times, artists and details are subject to change.

Added attractions!

The Down East Talent Search is a general admission seating event. SRAPAS series services (Park & Ride, VIP parking, FRIENDS Lounge) are not offered for added attraction events.

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