Thomas W. Severns, Jr., on July 26, 2021, of Bellmawr
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On Saturday, September 18, Kimmel Cultural Campus will celebrate the region’s return of in-person performing arts by featuring performing arts organizations from around the region and FREE performances on the Kimmel Cultural Campus’ Commonwealth Plaza


The incredible 21/22 season lineup features events and artists spanning genres and appeal, including Hamilton, Dianne Reeves, Alton Brown,

PHILADANCO, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Jerry Blavat, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, Kristin Chenoweth,

John Mulaney, Paw Patrol Live, and Friends! The Musical Parody


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Philadelphia, PA, July 27, 2021) - Kimmel Cultural Campus, the region’s largest non-profit arts organization and second largest in the nation, announces the much-anticipated return of in-person performing arts across their venues: the Kimmel Center, the Academy of Music, and the Merriam Theater.

On Saturday, September 18, from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m., Kimmel Cultural Campus will host a grand reopening event in Commonwealth Plaza to celebrate the start of the 2021-22 season and the reinvigoration of the darkened Avenue of the Arts. Entitled “ARTS LAUNCH 2021: A Return to In-Person Arts”, arts organizations across the region are invited to participate in the festivities – to present information about their seasons, showcase performances, or to recruit staff and volunteers. Interested 501c3 organizations are encouraged to complete this form no later than close of business on Friday, August 6. This FREE event will feature a range of festivities, including performances, activities, demonstrations, and giveaways, and is presented in partnership with PNC Arts Alive.

“After 18 months of ‘extended intermission’, there are not enough words to describe how elated we are to safely welcome guests back to stand-up comedy, Broadway, jazz, family, and classical events,” said Ed Cambron, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of the Kimmel Cultural Campus. “Philadelphia is made stronger through artistic experiences that show us how we connect and that we are better together. With hundreds of events planned for this season, we honor and celebrate our diverse and resilient region’s interests. During our closure, the generosity of our donors enabled us to continue to respond to the needs of our neighbors: lifting the voices in our community through our Digital Stage presentations; transforming our education programs to the online space; partnering with local charities for food and blood drives; serving as a polling place; and opening our doors as a peaceful resting place for protesters and police officers. We cherished these opportunities and are anxiously awaiting our next step: bringing our community together through the arts.”

Along with the Tony® Award-winning Broadway productions previously announced, the 2021-22 season includes the return of fan-favorite shows in the Family Discovery Series, powerhouse musicians for the jazz season, a star-studded array of one-nighter events, and all-new material from renowned performers. Kimmel Cultural Campus Resident Companies – The Philadelphia Orchestra, Philadelphia Ballet, Opera Philadelphia, PHILADANCO, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, and The Philly POPS – all return to the Campus, along with an array of rental engagements and events. Packages and select single tickets are on sale now!

“During our closure, we cancelled more than 1,100 events- effecting over 900,000 guests. Since announcing our reopening, however, we have seen record ticket sales, which tells us Philadelphia is ready to return to the live arts experience,” said Crystal Brewe, Senior Vice President of Strategic Marketing and Communication at Kimmel Cultural Campus. “Committed to prioritizing guest safety, we partnered with 35 performing arts venues across the nation in an in-depth study that has not only informed the timing of our reopening, but the ongoing research, in tandem with guidance from health authorities, is also informing a rigorous set of health and safety guidelines.”

"The Avenue of the Arts has missed the energy and excitement of the Kimmel Cultural Campus. Its reopening is a sign of the resurgence of the arts and cultural scene in Philadelphia," says Laura Burkhardt, Executive Director of the Avenue of the Arts. "We are thrilled to be a partner in the September 18th reopening event and can't wait to join in the welcoming of audiences back to Center City, and the Avenue of the Arts, to enjoy stellar performances, indulge in our restaurants, and stay in our hotels. After this most unwelcome extended intermission, we need the healing power of the arts to unite our community like never before! 

This season showcases returning fan favorites and Philadelphia premieres the whole family can enjoy. Beloved author, comedian, and radio personality David Sedaris will share his new work and have the audience in stitches forAn Evening With David Sedaris. Five-time Grammy® Award-winning jazz sensation Dianne Reeves brings her impressive vocals to a live audience. Go back in time to experience the world’s most iconic band and celebrate the best of Abbey Road with Rain – A Tribute to The Beatles. Travel to Central Perk for a cup of coffee when everyone's favorite friend group takes the stage in the riotous theatrical satire: FRIENDS! The Musical Parody.Families take an adventure into the Neighborhood of Make-Believe to dance, sing, and share some laughs and lessons with Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood LIVE! 

The revolution returns with the Tony®, Grammy®, and Olivier Award-winning Broadway musical Hamilton.Philadelphia music and cultural icon Jerry Blavat, aka “The Geator with the Heater,” makes his way back to the Kimmel Cultural Campus for another star-studded evening. Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus, and the whole Peanuts gang will bring everyone’s favorite holiday classic to life in the touring production, A Charlie Brown Christmas Live On Stage. Fans of The Princess Bride will receive a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the cult-classic film from star Cary Elwes in a moderated screening event, The Princess Bride: An Inconceivable Evening with Cary Elwes. Emmy and Tony® Award winning actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth brings her powerhouse vocals back to the stage for a concert performance of her latest album, For The Girls. And John Mulaney, celebrated comedian and Saturday Night Live alum, takes Philadelphia by storm with nine shows!


Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-893-1999 or online at The Kimmel Center Box Office is currently closed. Group sales are available for groups of 10 or more and can be purchased by calling 215-790-5883. See for more information.