by o palsson
For a number of years, Rochester, MN has been labeled as one of America’s finest cities for newly weds. One of the reasons for this label could be the wide variety of activities that stray from the ordinary dinner and a movie date night. Rochester is home to a variety of art centers and theatres, and offers musical performances throughout the year. The arts and entertainment found in Rochester helps to demonstrate that this is a city that understands the importance of the abstract side of life.
If one is seeking to view an art gallery or museum, there are four popular options to choose from in Rochester:
– Rochester Art Center – Newly remodeled and moved in May 2004, the Art Center is a relatively small center which holds no permanent collections inside. Instead, the center hosts a variety of temporary travelling collections which change throughout the year. Nearby, the outdoor Zumbro Gardens is a terraced park and sculpture lawn which leads down to the edge of the Zumbro River.
– SEMVA Art Gallery – The South East Minnesota Visual Artists Gallery, located in the Peace Plaza in downtown Rochester, offers mainly works from southeastern Minnesota Artists. The variety of works includes pottery, woods, clothing, fabrics, and canvas displays.
– Mayowood Galleries – Fine antiques and gardent accents from 18th and 19th century England can be found at Mayowood Galleries. Two locations are available, at the Mayowood Mansion and downtown Rochester.
– History Center of Olmsted County – For more of a historical display, the History Center offers a Histry Library, a Genealogy Center, as well as a display of the history of Rochester and the surrounding area. The History Center also owns and operates Mayowood Mansion.
After a morning or afternoon of visiting an art gallery or museum, the possibility exists to view a live production at one of the three theatres in Rochester:
– Masque Youth Theatre – The Masque presents a variety of children’s plays from October to June. The goal of the Masque is to involve young people in theatre arts, and it successfully does that by using children as actors and providing plays that would interest the child found in everyone.
– Rochester Civic Theatre – A variety of perfomances can be found at the Civic Theatre. The venue offers nine perfomances a year, including dramas, comedies, and musicals. Previous shows have included Fiddler on the Roof and The Adventures of Stuart Little.
– Rochester Repertory Theatre – The Repertory Theatre offers performances of classical and contemporary works by a variety of artists. Some previous shows have included Three Tall Women, The Foreigner and FoxFire.
Rochester’s music scene also offers a wide variety of options. Apart from the countless restaurants, bars, and pubs that offer live music free of charge on various nights, there are a few large groups that perform in Rochester throughout the year. These groups are comprised of members of the community, sharing their talents in order to give back to the city they call home. The list below offers a glimpse at the musical choices of Rochester. It is by no means the only groups and performances available.
– Rochester Civic Music – Presented by the City of Rochester, free live music is offered to the community through the “Down By the Riverside” outdoor summer concert series. Artists have included Three Dog Night, Peter Fischer, The Marshall Tucker Band, and many local acts.
– Rochester Symphony Orchestra & Chorale – Jere Lantz, music director and conductor, leads this group’s perfomances of a variety of works through the year.
– Rochester Community Band – Offering quarterly performances, and a few additional sumer festivals, the Community band is open to all people, regardless of skill level. The band emphasis lies on using your talents and having fun while performing modern and classic music.
– Chorale Arts Ensemble – This group is dedicated to the creation and performance of new music, and also to the presentation of music from the Renaissance to the 20th century. Forty voices, chosen by audition, make up this choir which performs choral and orchestral masterworks and vocal jazz.
– Southeast Minnesota Youth Orchestra – SEMYO brings middle and high school students together to study music, learn to work and perform together, and to contribute to the cultural life of the community.
– Swing Street – One of the most well known jazz bands in Rochester, Swing Street plays at community events and private functions throughout the year. The group’s love of jazz shows with a repertoire that extends from the early days of jazz to modern arrangements.
As evidenced by the list above, Rochester certainly has a wide variety of options when it comes to Arts and Entertainment. Both newly weds and everday-citizens alike can enjoy the countless performances and art galleries offered throughout the year.
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