U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, comedian Larry the Cable Guy and the dancers of Ballroom with a Twist 2 are among those that will grace the stage of the Cowan Center during its upcoming season.

"Let's have some fun," Cowan Center Executive Director Susan Thomae-Morphew said in announcing the season during a news conference and luncheon Thursday. You can watch the press conference in the video on this page.

Thomae-Morphew noted that the Cowan Center, a performance hall on the campus of The University of Texas at Tyler, has anannual economic impact of $6.5 million and is a "major component to the culture life of Tyler."

The luncheon included a video presentation featuring the acts coming to Tyler.

The Performing Arts Series includes Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with the Wynton Marsalis Holiday Show, Dec. 9; Ballroom with a Twist 2, Jan. 15; Kodo One Earth Tour, Feb. 17; and Penn & Teller, April 17.

The Broadway Series features the musicals "Smokey Joe's Café featuring the Coasters," Oct. 11; "Sister Act," Nov. 6; and "Mama Mia!" Jan. 26.

The Braitwaite Intimate Gathering Series will bring comedienne Jeanne Robertson, Nov. 15; comedy troupe The Capitol Steps, March 19; and Larry the Cable Guy, Sept. 13.

The Distinguished Lecture Series features Justice Clarence Thomas (date to be announced); author Nicholas Sparks, Feb. 5; and Rod Canion, the founder of Compaq Computer Corp., who will speak in UT Tyler's University Center Theatre on March 31.

Arts in Education Series features shows for children. On tap are Skippyjon Jones, Oct. 2; and Mathemagic, April 29.

The season will include a concert featuring pianist Yuja Wang and violinist Leonidas Kavakos, Nov. 20, made possible with funding from a charitable trust left by Frances Cowan Gibson.

To order tickets, check the center's website, cowancenter.org, or call the box office, 903-566-7424.

This will be the eighteenth season for the Cowan Center, Thomae-Morphew said.

"We may be all grown up presenting important and entertaining world-class events to our community, but we remain a teenager at heart," she said in information presented at the luncheon.


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