Important Notice

Originally published Saturday, August 10, 2019 at 06:40p.m.

A new take on an American genius; a musical lament on the decline of romance; and an orchestra certain to get everybody “In the Mood.”

All of it comes to the Verde Valley this year, as Yavapai College Performing Arts presents its 2019-20 Verde Valley Season.

Yavapai College’s Verde Valley season commences in Sedona Friday night, Sept. 6 at 7 p.m., with a returning favorite and an American legend. Matt Baker & The Trio brings the critically acclaimed Manhattan keyboard virtuoso back to the Verde Valley, where he thrilled audiences in 2016.

This time, Baker, double-bassist Endea Owens, drummer Curtis Nowosad and vocalist Nicole Zuraitis salute one of America’s greatest composers in an evening called A Rhapsody of Gershwin.

The many moods and breathtaking versatility of the composer who brought us “Rhapsody in Blue,” “I Got Rhythm,” “The Man I Love” and “Summertime” are captured in an evening that promises toe-tapping fun and moments of musical grandeur. Matt Baker & The Trio perform one night only at the Sedona Creative Life Center, 333 Schnebly Hill Road.

The Verde Series returns to Cottonwood on February 15 at 7 p.m. with a powerfully sung and cleverly orchestrated lament on modern courtship. So ... Is This a Date? pairs operatic soprano Carmen Elisa Cancél with New York pianist, singer and conductor Jean Sophie Kim for a wickedly musical take on romance in the age of digital dating.

From the time-honored traditions of flirting to the dry exercise of ordering companions off of websites, So … Is This a Date? follows the ever-shifting path modern singles traverse in their search for love. A musical call for a return to romance, So … Is This a Date? blends good music, good stories, and bad dates into a compelling evening. At the Old Town Center for the Arts, 633 N. Fifth St., in Cottonwood.

In March, the Verde Series closes its season with a brassy dose of pure Americana. The World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra, that 18-piece tribute to the heydays of swing, pulls the “Chattanooga Choo Choo” into Sedona Friday night, March 6 at 7 p.m. Don’t miss a high-energy evening full of classic favorites like “In the Mood” “Pennsylvania 6-500” and “Tuxedo Junction.” The World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra performs at the Sedona Performing Arts Center (Sedona Red Rock High School Auditorium) 995 Upper Red Rock Loop Road, in Sedona.

Yavapai College Performing Arts’ Verde Valley Series is designed to share the widest variety of touring musicians and artists with audiences across Yavapai County. Now its fourth season, the Verde Series has presented singers, dancers, orchestras, solo musicians and acrobats in a range of venues including Camp Verde, Cottonwood and Sedona.

Tickets for Matt Baker & The Trio are $25. Tickets for The World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra are $45. Advance tickets for both shows are available through the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center Box Office (928) 776.2000 (or 877-928-4253 toll-free), at, or at the door on the night of the event. Tickets for So … Is This a Date? Start at $20, and are available at the Old Town Center for the Arts, (928) 634.0940 or For additional information on any of these events, please contact the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center Box Office.

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