Originally created 08/06/99

Performing arts season promises variety, excitement



Some interesting shows and events are lined up at the Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center and Bell Auditorium -- but the 1999-2000 season will be pretty exciting if they all pan out.

A possibility for Labor Day weekend is an oldies concert, featuring former teen idol Fabian, the Shangri-Las, Vickey Lee, and Rocky and the Rollers. It is scheduled for Bell Auditorium on Saturday, Sept. 4, but the event is not confirmed.

The B.B. King Blues Festival returns to the civic center Thursday, Sept. 23. Tickets at the box office are $26.50 and $31.50.

After a prolonged absence, the Connecticut-based World Wrestling Federation, which has the No. 1 televised wresting show, Monday Night Raw, comes back to the civic center Saturday, Sept. 25. Tickets, priced $16, $26, and $31, go on sale Saturday, Aug. 14, at 10 a.m. at the civic center box office, 601 Seventh St., and at TicketMaster outlets.

Strutting studs of another kind, the "world famous" Lipizzan Stallions have a contract pending for a show at the civic center Friday, Oct. 1.

The place will certainly be abuzz when the Augusta Lynx's second East Coast Hockey League season begins Thursday, Oct. 14. For Lynx ticket information, call 724-4ICE.

Crystal Gayle joins the Augusta Symphony for the season's first pops concerts Saturday, Oct. 16, at Bell Auditorium. For ticket information, call the symphony office at 826-4702.

The drama Road to Victory (Oct. 28-30) and school-oriented productions The Miracle Worker (Wednesday, Nov. 3), Ramona (Friday, Nov. 5) and 101 Dalmatians (Monday, Nov. 8) have contracts pending for the Bell.

No word yet on the Broadway at the Bell series, but Reggie Williams, the civic center's general manager, said Annie and Victor/Victoria -- are coming to the North Charleston Performing Arts Center in September and October respectively. So perhaps they'll swing by the Garden City.

Ethereal pop pianist Jim Brickman, who has sold out the 825-seat Imperial Theatre in previous years, appears to be switching his next engagement in Augusta to the 2,690-seat Bell Auditorium. A spot on Saturday, Dec. 11, is being held open for him.

Utilizing the civic center's ice floor are two events with contracts pending -- Speedway on Ice Sunday, Dec. 26, and the return of one of the complex's most successful shows, Champions on Ice, on Wednesday, Feb. 9.

To keep abreast of activities at the civic center and Bell Auditorium, call 722-3521, check the arenass electronic marquees on Telfair Street and Seventh Street, look in The Augusta Chronicle's calendar listings and read this column religiously.

Kent Kimes covers arts and entertainment for The Augusta Chronicle. He can be reached at (706) 724-0851 or feature@augustachronicle.com.