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The University of Florida Performing Arts Brings World-Renowned Performances to Gainesville This Season

By: Bryan D. / 14 Aug 2023
The image is of a conductor's hands with the title 2023-2024 Performing Arts Season

The Sunshine State has so many great destinations to visit, but none are quite as quaint as Gainesville. Located in northern Florida, the city is a must-visit destination for those who enjoy outdoor activities, education and sporting events. It's also home to world-class cultural attractions and the stage for live music events that are as dynamic and diverse as the city itself.  


Part of Gainesville's allure is the University of Florida Performing Arts (UFPA) and its entertaining season of world-renowned performances perfect for the entire family, a date night, or just a fun night out. Whether you're a jazz aficionado, an indie enthusiast, a fan of classical melodies or lover of stand-up comedy, this year's season running from September 14, 2023 to April 23, 2024 caters to a range of entertainment tastes (see the full brochure here). 


If you're planning a trip to Gainesville this year, join us for a night at the UFPA for one the live performances. Tickets go on sale to the public beginning Saturday, August 26 and can be purchased online at UF students receive a discount on all performances. 


Saturday, September 14 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Christian McBride

Eight-time Grammy® Award-winning jazz bassist Christian McBride fuses the fire of a virtuoso with the depth and grounding of a seasoned journeyman. Joined by some of the top names in jazz, these stellar musicians take an electrifying new direction featuring original compositions as well as fresh takes on classic songs. 


Sunday, September 17 at 7:00pm

Steve-O: The Bucket List Tour

Steve O's Bucket List Tour is a combination of a comedy show and a highlights reel as Steve puts on this powerhouse powerpoint display of standup comedy and multimedia. This performance will contain adult content.


Monday, September 25 at 8:00pm

Daniel Tosh

Best known from the Comedy Central show Tosh.O, Daniel Tosh will perform an evening of stand up comedy. This performance will contain adult content.


Wednesday, September 27 at 7:30pm

Chucho Valdés Quartet

Pianist, composer, and arranger Chucho Valdés is one of the most influential artists of our time.  Blending jazz, classical music, Afro-Cuban traditional music, and more into his unique personal style, Valdés is the winner of seven Grammy Awards®, five Latin Grammy Awards®, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Latin Academy of Recording, and was inducted into the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame.


Friday, September 29 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Kat Edmonson

Kat Edmonson is an award-winning singer and songwriter who embodies the spirit of the past while remaining absolutely au courant. Edmonson is known to perform familiar classics, interweaving humorous anecdotes, philosophical musings, and her love of film — all with disarming candor and vulnerability. 


Saturday, September 30 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Joshua Kane: Borders of the Mind

Can he read your mind? Mentalist Joshua Kane's Borders of the Mind will blow you away! With an eccentric childhood — including fire eating and knife throwing — Kane was destined for a career on the stage, or as an international spy. Experience dazzling feats of lie detection, simultaneous telepathy — and possibly discover your own latent psychic abilities. A family-friendly performance full of mystery, intrigue, and endless possibilities, people of all ages leap to participate in the strange happenings at the Borders of the Mind.


Sunday, October 15 at 7:30pm


Hailing from Zimbabwe, the all-woman a cappella quintet Nobuntu is recognized internationally for its sparkling energy, breathtakingly rich voices, and inventive performances that cover the gamut from gospel to traditional Zimbabwean songs to Afro-jazz. Augmented only using minimal percussion, they emphasize pure voices, authentic dance movements, and the use of traditional instruments. 


Thursday, October 19 at 7:30pm

Nick Carter

Nick Carter became an international pop superstar as the youngest member of iconic boy band, Backstreet Boys. Known for his boyish good looks and heartthrob status, Carter's 23-year entertainment career has spanned far beyond the stages of sold-out arenas, with an array of projects in television and film, and as a philanthropist and author. 


Sunday, October 22 at 2:00pm

Balourdet Quartet

One of the hottest new string quartets on the classical music scene, Balourdet Quartet is made up of individuals filled with raw passion for chamber music. 


Friday, October 27 at 7:30pm

Swan Lake

Back by popular demand! The most beautiful ballet of all-time, Swan Lake is the story of a prince whose fiancée has been transformed into a swan by the evil sorcerer, Von Rothbart. Featuring DANB artists Carla Amancio as the Swan Queen, and Gabriel Lopes as Prince Siegried, the stage is transformed into a world of beauty and artistry. Family friendly. 


Wednesday, November 1 at 7:30pm

Ndlovu Youth Choir

Known for their soul-stirring performances and fresh from their America's Got Talent showcase, Ndlovu Youth Choir brings a message of hope, love, and togetherness. The choir's repertoire is an exciting mix of traditional South African genres with pop, rock, jazz, and EDM. 


Thursday, November 2 at 7:30pm

Bored Teachers Comedy Tour

Bored Teachers presents the 2023 ‘We Can't Make This Stuff Up' Comedy Tour featuring the funniest teacher-comedians in the world! Their hilarious skits have amassed HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS of views on the internet, and they're all joining comic forces on the stage to bring you a night of laughter you do not want to miss.


Monday, November 6 at 7:30pm

Steep Canyon Rangers

Grammy® winners Steep Canyon Rangers have mastered bluegrass as you have never heard it before. Although they received a boost when they collaborated with Steve Martin, Steep Canyon Rangers built a large audience with their interpretations of bluegrass, folk, and string music. 


Wednesday, November 8 at 8:00pm

Mean Girls

Direct from Broadway, MEAN GIRLS is the hilarious hit musical from book writer TINA FEY (30 Rock), composer JEFF RICHMOND (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), lyricist NELL BENJAMIN (Legally Blonde), and original director and choreographer CASEY NICHOLAW (The Book of Mormon). The story of a naïve newbie who falls prey to a trio of lionized frenemies, MEAN GIRLS "delivers with immense energy, a wicked sense of humor and joyful inside-jokery."


Friday, November 17 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Alexa Tarantino Quartet

Alexa Tarantino is an award-winning jazz saxophonist whom you may remember from our Ulysses Owens Jr. Generation Y performance in 2020. Named one of the Top 5 Alto Saxophonists by JazzTimes Critics' Poll, Tarantino has established herself as a high-octane, dynamic performer.


Saturday, November 18 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Luca Mundaca

With more than 138,000 monthly listeners and millions of plays on Spotify, Luca Mundaca is an artist in her prime. Mundaca uses her stunning voice to bring about great intimacy and emotion. Influenced by jazz and bossa nova, themes in her songs often revolve around nature and our relationship with the world around us.


Wednesday, November 29 at 7:30pm

Big Band Holidays: Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, featuring Ashley Pezzotti

Make the holidays swing with Big Band Holidays. A celebrated tradition under the Music Direction of Wynton Marsalis, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra features vocalist Ashley Pezzotti. An uplifting event perfect for the entire family. 


Friday, December 1 at 7:30pm

Paula Poundstone

Described as one of the bravest and best improv comics of our time, Paula Poundstone can be heard regularly on NPR's news quiz Wait, Wait… Don't Tell Me! and podcast Live from the Poundstone Institute. Poundstone's shows are a steady stream of self-deprecation, sarcasm, current events, and stories about her cats and kids. 


Friday December 15 at 7:30pm / Saturday, December 16 at 2:00pm & 7:30pm / Sunday, December 17 at 2:00pm 

The Nutcracker

The all-time family favorite with beautiful dancing, sets, and costumes is here again! Everyone needs a hero, and in this case she's a girl. Clara saves the Nutcracker prince, and to thank her he brings her on a magical journey to the Kingdom of the Sweets, where the exquisite Sugar Plum Fairy puts on a regal show.


Saturday December 16 at 4:00pm / Sunday, December 17 at 4:00pm

Dance Alive National Ballet presents Class with Clara

Join the charming ‘Clara', heroine of the Nutcracker Ballet for a princess style ballet class onstage in the Kingdom of the Sweets!  Training not required.  Street shoes acceptable, but you can dance in your socks or ballet shoes. Company dancers will be available to help your children as well, so they will have the most possible attention given. 


Thursday, January 18 at 7:30pm

American Spiritual Ensemble

American Spiritual Ensemble began as a dream of performing and preserving the music of the American slave spirituals to keep the art form alive. These songs now stand as a testament to the strength found through faith during times of hardship as well as a unifying force among all peoples.


Tuesday, January 23 at 7:30pm

Parsons Dance 

Parsons Dance is known for its energized, athletic, and joyous style. Their stunning work flawlessly combines the movements and gestures of modern dance with the precision and discipline of classical dance to create a program that delivers a spirited evening for all ages.


Saturday, January 27 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Roxy Coss

Grammy® Award-winning saxophonist Roxy Coss visits UpStage, bringing with her the sounds of New York City. A decorated bandleader with six critically acclaimed albums, Coss is considered one of the most creative and charismatic artistic voices of her generation. 


Tuesday, January 30 at 7:30pm

YCA on Tour

Featuring some of UFPA's favorite soloists, Young Concert Artists on Tour is a new program that brings together a unique chamber ensemble of the most extraordinary young artists to cities in North America. This dynamic performance features rarely heard instrumentation that combines voice with violin, cello, and piano.


Thursday, February 1 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Twisted Pine

New roots string band Twisted Pine draws audiences across the UK and the US with their lush harmonies and daring, forthright, and charismatic songwriting. Of bluegrass origin, this quartet has developed its own unique style with layered sound that echoes Indie pop. Their voices blend into unexpected harmonies and grooves together in instrumental interplay.


Friday, February 2 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Alfredo Rodriguez Trio

Over the past decade, Cuban-born pianist Alfredo Rodriguez has gone from a young local artist to a globally recognized Grammy® nominee with three critically acclaimed releases. Schooled in the rigorous classical conservatories of Havana, Rodriguez's riveting artistry is informed as much by Bach and Stravinsky as by his heritage and jazz roots.


Thursday, February 8 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

The String Queens

Praised for authentic, soulful, and orchestral sound, The String Queens is a dynamic trio that inspires audiences to love, hope, feel, and imagine through stirring musical experiences. With a repertoire that spans from Baroque to jazz to the Hot 100 Chart, The String Queens act as a bridge between classical music and mainstream pop with an exhilarating journey through time and musical genres with arrangements from the heart.


Saturday, February 10 at 7:30pm

Love in the Swamp

Nothing says Happy Valentine's Day more than Love, and DANB gives you love in abundance! A fun and fantastic show, it sets the mood with the DANB men in Gator ‘orange and blue' dancing exuberantly down the aisles. 


Tuesday, February 13 at 7:30pm

Detroit Symphony Orchestra

Jader Bignamini, Music Director / Alisa Weilerstein, cello

The internationally acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra crafts each performance with thoughtful consideration toward creative ways to merge the power of music with the spirit of exploration. Cellist Alisa Weilerstein returns to the Phillips Center sharing her consummate artistry, emotional investment, and rare interpretive depth.


Thursday, February 15 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

New York Voices

New York Voices has taken the best classic jazz and moved it to new levels. Shaped by Brazilian, R&B, classical, and pop influences, their performances at top venues including Carnegie Hall allow them to be considered one of the most exciting vocal ensembles in the country. 


Friday, February 16 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Six One Five Collective

Steeped in a mix of Americana, folk, country, and pop, Six One Five Collective is a Grammy®-nominated collaborative effort and creative brainstorm of four artists reminiscent of bands like Fleetwood Mac and Little Big Town.


Wednesday, February 21 at 7:30pm

Come From Away: True Story. Hit Musical

On 9/11, the world stopped. On 9/12, their stories moved us all. This stirring and inspiring musical takes you into the heart of the remarkable true story of the small town of Newfoundland that opened its homes to 7,000 stranded travelers on 9/11.


Sunday, February 25 at 2:00pm

Arod Quartet

The Arod Quartet skyrocketed to international attention when they won the coveted First Prize at the 2016 ARD International Music Competition in Munich, having already taken First Prize at the Carl Nielsen Chamber Music Competition in Copenhagen in 2015. 


Tuesday, February 27 at 7:30pm

Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Ladysmith Black Mambazo has celebrated more than 60 years of joyous and uplifting melodies. Within this music are the intricate rhythms and harmonies of their native South African traditions. The a cappella vocal group has created a spirit that has touched a worldwide audience and garnered praise and accolades from a wide body of people, organizations, and countries. 


Tuesday, March 5 at 7:30pm

Step Afrika!

Step Afrika! is dedicated to the tradition of stepping, blending percussive styles practiced by historically African American fraternities and sororities, and traditional African and contemporary dance into a compelling experience. Much more than just movement, they integrate songs, storytelling, humor, and audience participation. 


Wednesday, March 14 at 7:30pm

Jesus Christ Superstar

Celebrating its 50th Anniversary, a mesmerizing new production of the iconic musical phenomenon returns to the stage. Jesus Christ Superstar is set against the backdrop of an extraordinary series of events during the final weeks in the life of Jesus Christ as seen through the eyes of Judas. Reflecting the rock roots that defined a generation, the legendary score includes I Don't Know How to Love Him, Gethsemane, and Superstar. 


Sunday, March 17 at 2:00pm

Vam and E.T. York Performing Artist: Ying Li, piano

Canada's reigning couple of Celtic music is coming to the Phillips Center — and they are bringing their family with them! Natalie and Donnell's high level of skill and palpable joy at playing the fiddle together has earned them both industry acclaim and built up a loyal fan base.


Tuesday, March 19 at 7:30pm

Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy

Canada's reigning couple of Celtic music is coming to the Phillips Center — and they are bringing their family with them! Natalie and Donnell's high level of skill and palpable joy at playing the fiddle together has earned them both industry acclaim and built up a loyal fan base.


Wednesdya, March 20 at 7:30pm

Pat Metheny – Dream Box Tour

Twenty-time Grammy® Award-winning guitarist Pat Metheny is known to bring something unique to every performance. This show is no exception, focusing on the various ways of playing solo he has explored across the decades in an evening that will be very special. 


Saturday, March 23 at 2:00pm & 7:30pm

Dance Alive National Ballet presents Giselle

The ultimate Romantic Ballet, Giselle is the tragic story of a beautiful young peasant girl who falls in love with a nobleman disguised as a commoner. Ultimately dying of a broken heart, she becomes one with the ‘Wilis', ethereal ghosts of unmarried girls. Giselle features guest artist Philadelphia Ballet's Principal Dancer Oksana Maslova with DANB Principal Dancer Gabriel Lopes at the 7:30 p.m. performance, and DANB Principals Carla Amancio with Roberto Vega at the 2 p.m. show. Family friendly.


Sunday, March 24 at 7:30pm

Academy of St Martin in the Fields

Joshua Bell, Music Director and violinist

Music Director and virtuoso violinist Joshua Bell returns to our stage to lead the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Retaining the flexibility and spirit of their origin as a small, conductorless ensemble, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields has gained an enviable international reputation as one of the world's finest chamber orchestras.


Saturday, March 30 at 7:30pm

On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio & Gloria Estefan

On Your Feet! is the inspiring true story about heart, heritage, and two people who believe in their talent — and each other — to become an international sensation: Gloria and Emilio Estefan. 


Thursday, April 11 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

Harold López-Nussa: Timba a la Americana

Featuring Grégoire Maret with Luques Curtis and Ruy Adrian López-Nussa

Pianist Harold López-Nussa reflects the richness of Cuban music with his distinctive combination of classical, folkloric, and improvisation. This fresh take is an exhilarating personification of the ritmo of the modern music scene's bustling soul. 


Friday, April 12 at 7:00pm & 9:00pm

The Crane Wives

A four-piece Indie band, The Crane Wives defies musical stereotype with eclectic instrumentation and lively stage presence. They perform homegrown Indie folk with candor and touching, soulful harmonies, and are not afraid to experiment with jazz influences and instruments.


Sunday April 14 at 4:00pm

360 Allstars

An energy-packed performance for the whole family complete with basketball, breakdancing, beatboxing, acrobatics, BMX biking, and more! 360 ALLSTARS is a supercharged urban circus showcasing the phenomenal physical fusion of the artistry from street culture.


Tuesday, April 23 at 7:30pm

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo is a world-famous, all-male, classically trained ballet troupe that delivers hilarious parodies while performing both men's and women's roles.




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