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Guide to Howard County 2017: Arts

Music fans stretch out across the field at Centennial Park for a Sunset Serenades concert.
Music fans stretch out across the field at Centennial Park for a Sunset Serenades concert. (Brian Krista / Patuxent Publishing)

One area Howard County can certainly boast about is its vibrant arts scene, with an abundance of choices that include theater, music and dance companies, as well as free outdoor concerts at Lake Kittamaqundi, Centennial Park and Columbia's village centers. Performances are staged throughout the year at local venues.

LARGE VENUES
The Peter and Elizabeth Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College houses, among other facilities, Smith Theatre, the John G. Monteabaro Recital Hall and a state-of-the-art black box theater.
443-518-1490
howardcc.edu

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Merriweather Post Pavilion is an open-air amphitheater in Columbia's Symphony Woods has become a major stopping-off point on the pop music circuit, offering everything from rap to folk, from Peter Frampton to deadmau5.
410-715-5550
merriweathermusic.com

Jim Rouse Theatre for the Performing Arts at Wilde Lake High School is a 747-seat theater that hosts high school and community events as well as traveling acts.
410-313-8293
rousetheatre.org

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CONCERT SERIES
Candlelight Concerts is a subscription season at Howard Community College that regularly attracts top talent, including a jazz and children's concert series and theater productions.
410-997-2324
candlelightconcerts.org

Chalice Concert Series presents the mid-Atlantic region's finest chamber musicians in the Owen Brown Interfaith Center's acoustically dynamic sanctuary addition.
410-381-0097
uucolumbia.net

One World Coffeehouse takes place monthly at the Owen Brown Interfaith Center, offering an eclectic blend of folk, blues, world music, jazz and rock.
410-381-0097
uucolumbia.net

Second Saturday Cafe hosts the region's top acts in the jazz, blues and rock genres, performing in the cozy space of Oliver's Carriage House in Columbia's Town Center.
2ndsaturdaycafe.com

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Sundays at Three Chamber Music Series brings professional chamber music to Christ Episcopal Church in Columbia.
sundaysatthree.org

Sunset Serenades are weekly concerts in a variety of genres at Centennial Park, running from June through August.
410-313-4700
howardcountymd.gov/sunsetserenades

THEATER
Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts employs actors, directors, writers, musicians and technicians to immerse young people in the art of performing through a variety of programs.
410-381-0700
cctarts.org

Howard County Summer Theatre performs family-oriented musicals at local high schools, using youth casts and all-ages companies.
howardcountysummertheatre.org

Toby's Dinner Theatre specializes in Broadway-style musical fare, presented with a live band, professional costuming and inventive staging in the Columbia location, where it has hosted performances for more than 30 seasons.
410-730-8311
tobysdinnertheatre.com

Red Branch Theatre Company in Columbia produces four to five shows a season, including contemporary and family works.
410-220-6517
redbranchtheatrecompany.com

Rep Stage Company, based at Howard Community College, is the county's first Actors' Equity troupe, featuring the area's premier acting talent in challenging plays.
443-518-1500
repstage.org

MUSICAL GROUPS
Columbia Bands is a nonprofit for nonprofessional musicians that performs in three groups — a concert band, a jazz band and a "flute cocktail" — at free community concerts and other events.
columbiabands.org

Columbia Orchestra was founded in 1977, and the ensemble is now led by conductor Jason Love, offering concerts with instrumental works ranging from classic to contemporary composers.
410-465-8777
columbiaorchestra.org

Columbia Pro Cantare is a volunteer choir that presents programs ranging from operatic works to spirituals, and the area's only full orchestral and choral performance of Handel's "Messiah."
410-730-8549
procantare.org

Columbia Jazz Band now performs under the auspices of the Columbia Orchestra, playing big band, Latin jazz, blues and standards.
410-465-8777
columbiaorchestra.org

Peabody Children's Chorus trains girls and boys ages 6 to 18 with unchanged voices in music from a variety of genres and time periods in six ensembles on two campuses, one of which is in Howard County.
667-208-6640
peabody.jhu.edu

Voices 21 chamber chorus, led by founding director Dr. Jesse Parker, specializes in a cappella music and performs in churches, retirement communities and other venues.
240-643-6563
voicesxxi.org

ART CENTERS AND MUSEUMS
African Art Museum of Maryland, founded in 1980, is located in Fulton's Maple Lawn and offers a rare collection of African artifacts and folk art.

301-490-6070
africanartmuseum.org

Columbia Art Center in the village of Long Reach has provided resources for ceramic artists, photographers, calligraphers, woodworkers and others since 1987. It also houses a rotating gallery of exhibitions and a summer art camp for children
410-730-0075
columbiaartcenter.org

Howard County Center for the Arts, located in a former elementary school, now houses two galleries in addition to a black box theater in Ellicott City. It is also the seat of the Howard County Arts Council.
410-313-2787
hocoarts.org

Howard County Center of African American Culture houses African-American memorabilia and artifacts, an art gallery and a library with more than 10,000 publications and other artifacts. The center also sponsors a monthly book club
410-715-1921
hccaac.org

Local artists also exhibit at the Artists' Gallery in Columbia's American City Building, The Rouse Company Foundation Gallery at Howard Community College, Slayton House Gallery in Wilde Lake, The Meeting House Gallery in Oakland Mills and informal exhibition spaces at the Florence Bain Senior Center and elsewhere. Visual artists and crafts people share a handsome and historic complex at Savage Mill.

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LITERARY ARTS
Howard County Poetry and Literature Society — often abbreviated "HoCoPoLitSo" — has been bringing imaginative literary events, workshops and distinguished writers to student and adult audiences since 1974. Saul Bellow, Edward Albee, Seamus Heaney and Lucille Clifton have given public readings under the auspices of the community-based not-for-profit.
443-518-4568
hocopolitso.org

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CINEMA
Columbia Film Society brings the latest in distinguished foreign films to the Horowitz Center at Howard Community College in an annual subscription series.
columbiafilmsociety.org

CJC Jewish Film Series offers four movies with Jewish themes in English, Hebrew and foreign languages with subtitles. Viewings include refreshments as well as an optional discussion.
410-997-0694
columbiajewish.org

Howard County has two 14-screen movie theaters offering the latest Hollywood releases:

Columbia United Artists Theatres Snowden Square 14
844-462-7342, ext. 570

AMC Columbia Mall 14
410-423-0510

DANCE
Local dance troupes present regular showcases, and a variety of commercial dance studios provide training for a new generation:

Arabesque Dance Company
410-381-0017
livetodance.com

Arthur Murray Dance Studio
410-772-7880
dancecolumbia.com

b.Funk Dance Company
410-313-8199
bfunk.com

Backstage Dance Studio
410-312-0900
thebackstagedancestudio.com

Ballet with Cindee Velle
410-465-7674
cindeevelleballet.com

Dance Dimension
301-490-0252
thedancedimension.com

Genesis Arts
443-750-1332
genesisarts.net

Howard County Ballet
410-465-9414

Kinetics Dance Theatre
410-480-1686

Misako Ballet Studio
443-420-7151
misakodance.com

Patuxent Youth Ballet
410-992-4084
marylandballet.com

Studio Dans
301-498-3267
studiodans.com

That's Dancing Ballroom & Dancesport Center
301-776-0085
thatsdancingballroom.com

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