Lied Center Announces Spring 2021 Season!

Lied Center Announces Spring 2021 Season!

Highlights include the Philadelphia Orchestra, Chris Thile, Silkroad Ensemble, Paula Poundstone, and more!

(LINCOLN, NE – February 2, 2021) The Lied Center is presenting one of the most diverse programs of events in the nation this spring, featuring the world’s top artists. Responding to the COVID19 pandemic, nearly all spring season events will feature both in-person and virtual attendance options. From Tony Award-winning Broadway stars to virtuosic musicians and headline entertainment, the Lied Center’s 2021 Spring Season provides something for everyone in a time when we all need the arts more than ever.

Lied Center Executive Director Bill Stephan said, “In a time when the vast majority of the nation’s performing arts centers remain closed, we’re so happy to be welcoming many of the world’s top artists to the Lied Center this spring. From one of the nation’s top orchestras to some of the world’s best pianists to exciting modern dance, brass, jazz, bluegrass, and Broadway, this is going to be a truly inspiring spring season. We’re also proud that nearly all of this spring’s events include the opportunity to either attend in person or watch from home. Bringing the arts to the people of Nebraska is something we remain committed to, no matter the circumstances.”

Season highlights include the Lied Center debut of the virtuosic Silkroad Ensemble (founded by Yo-Yo Ma) on April 15, the return of GRAMMY Award-winner Chris Thile on March 24, and a special online concert for Lied audiences with the world-renowned Philadelphia Orchestra on March 20. Broadway star and Tony Award®-winner Kelli O’Hara will perform at the Lied on June 12, and comedy superstar Paula Poundstone returns on July 24. Including the previously announced Lied Live Online series of concerts, more than two dozen separate events are coming to the Lied this spring.

Through continued collaboration with the Lincoln/Lancaster County Health Department and the University of Nebraska, all shows with in-person audiences will feature socially distanced seating, and masks are required inside the Lied Center. Since the Lied Center reopened to the public in July of 2020, dozens of events welcoming thousands of patrons have been presented safely.

Tickets for spring shows go on sale to the public February 9 at 11 a.m. at, by phone at (402) 472-4747, or in person at the Lied Center box office. Patrons who purchase tickets to four or more shows will get a 20% discount on their entire order.

Online access to spring season shows:

For the first time ever, the Lied will also be offering a $99 virtual season pass, allowing online access to all 13 paid ticketed events. Most events are available to watch from home for $20 or less. Experience full-length performances of Lied artists from around the world in high-definition video and audio when you purchase online access.


Lied Center 2021 Spring events:


Mike Super Magic & Illusion

February 20, 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.

In-person only

As the winner of NBC’s hit show “Phenomenon,” finalist on “America’s Got Talent,” and featured magician on “Penn & Teller’s: Fool Us,” Mike Super is the only magician in history to win a LIVE magic competition on prime-time U.S. network TV and be voted America’s Favorite Mystifier. This family-friendly performance is filled with intrigue, danger, and anticipation!


Behzod Abduraimov, Piano

February 28, 4 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Introduced to Lied audiences in 2018 as a soloist with Russia’s Mariinsky Orchestra, Behzod Abduraimov has quickly established himself as a rising classical music star. Described as displaying “prodigious technique and rhapsodic flair” by The New York Times, Abduraimov returns to the Lied Center with a performance that includes Sergei Rachmaninoff’s grandiose Sonata No. 2.

"… the most perfectly accomplished pianist of his generation.” — The Independent


Rhapsody in Black

March 9, 7:30 p.m.

Free, virtual only

Following a powerful Lied Center performance in 2016, writer/actor Leland Gantt presents an inspiring and thought-provoking online production as part of the Lied Center’s MOSAIC Series. In this one-man theatrical performance, Gantt processes a lifetime struggling with what it means to be Black while deconstructing notions of race and realigning perspectives.


The Modern Gentlemen

March 13, 7:30 p.m. & March 14, 2 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

This quartet shared the stage with Frankie Valli for a decade as the Four Seasons.  During their tenure with Valli, they developed their own signature sound and incredible precision dancing. They are now touring the world performing your favorite hits of the ’60s and ’70s with four-part tight harmonies in styles ranging from pop and rock to jazz and doo-wop.

“Terrific! They’ve discovered how to turn back time!” — TIME magazine


Michael Londra and The Celtic Fire

March 16 & 17, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Irish singing sensation Michael Londra and his dazzling cast of “Riverdance” and “Lord of the Dance” alums perform a lively evening of traditional Irish music and step dancing. Backed by an ensemble of Ireland’s finest musicians, Michael Londra and the Celtic Fire promise an electric St. Patrick’s Day celebration straight from the heart of the Emerald Isle. Included in the spectacular cast is Trent Kowalik, who at 13 years old won the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical for the title role in “Billy Elliot the Musical.”


The Philadelphia Orchestra, featuring Gil Shaham

March 20, 7:30 p.m.

Free, virtual only

After last appearing at the Lied Center in 2001, the Philadelphia Orchestra takes the Lied Center “Virtual Stage” this spring for an unforgettable performance. Lied audiences will delight in Vivaldi’s iconic and transcendent Four Seasons in a performance that soars to new heights with world-renowned violinist Gil Shaham, who will both perform the solo and lead the ensemble.


Dino-Light: A Glow-in-the-Dark Adventure

March 21, 1:30 p.m. & 4:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Giant luminescent dinosaurs take over the Lied Center! Dino-Light is a glow-in-the-dark adventure that brings a friendly dinosaur to life to discover a wonderful world full of creatures that light up the darkness. Recipient of the prestigious Jim Henson Foundation Grant, Dino-Light blends cutting-edge puppetry, technology and dance in a show fun for all ages!


Chris Thile

March 24, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Multiple GRAMMY® Award-winner and MacArthur Fellow Chris Thile is a mandolin virtuoso, composer and vocalist, a member of Punch Brothers and Nickel Creek, and was host of the radio programLive from Here.” Thile returns to the Lied Center for an evening of music that transcends genres while creating a distinctly new American musical aesthetic.


Naughton Duo

March 30, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Identical twin sisters Christina and Michelle Naughton have been hailed by the San Francisco Examiner for their “stellar musicianship, technical mastery and awe-inspiring artistry.” Experience the Lied Center debut of this incredible piano duo featuring a program of works by Mendelssohn, Mozart, Chopin, Brahms and Ravel!


Diane Schuur

April 7, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Regarded as one of contemporary jazz’s leading vocalists, Diane Schuur is as eclectic as she is brilliant. Schuur was blind from birth, but gifted with perfect pitch and three-and-a-half-octave vocal range. With a recording career that spans over three decades and includes two GRAMMY® Awards, Schuur has explored almost every corner of the American musical landscape.


Michelle Ellsworth

April 10, 7:30 p.m.

Free, virtual only

You’ve never seen anything quite like this! Experience one of the world’s most creative multimedia dance artists who, The New York Times said, “churns out surprises, from coin-operated choreography to implausible science experiments.” Recognized with a Guggenheim Fellowship, Ellsworth combines movement with science, architecture, and humanities for a mind-blowing multimedia presentation.


Silkroad Ensemble

April 15, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Founded by cellist Yo-Yo Ma, Silkroad Ensemble has been called “vibrant and virtuosic” by the Wall Street Journal and “one of the 21st century’s great ensembles” by the Vancouver Sun. The group creates music that engages difference, sparking radical cultural collaboration and passion-driven learning to build a more hopeful world. Don’t miss their Lied Center debut!


Super Diamond

April 17, 4 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

In tribute to the much loved, international pop icon Neil Diamond, Super Diamond performs the timeless classics including “Sweet Caroline,” “America,” “Cherry Cherry,” “Forever in Blue Jeans” and all your favorite hits. Super Diamond’s success in America is unprecedented for a tribute band. With a nod from Neil (the man himself!), Super Diamond is the most celebrated Neil Diamond tribute artist in the world.



Black Voices in a Time of Change: Poetry, Art, and Music

April 20, 7:30 p.m.

Free, virtual only

Drawing on the poetry of the late poet Lucille Clifton, UNL Poets will celebrate the long history of Black poets bringing often uneasy truths to the heart of America. Curated by Kwame Dawes, the poets, in conversation with music and visual art, will perform their own compositions and selections of poems by Lucille Clifton, whose words continue to resonate in our culture today.


Canadian Brass

April 29 & 30, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

The world’s most famous brass group returns to the Lied Center! Celebrating their 50th Season, the Canadian Brass have performed in nearly every major concert hall in the world and have been seen by millions of viewers on “The Tonight Show,” “Entertainment Tonight,” and PBS. From renaissance and baroque music to Dixieland, ragtime and Broadway show tunes, enjoy a concert of the greatest hits by this virtuosic ensemble.


Arnaldo Cohen, Piano

May 13, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

Brazilian-born pianist Arnaldo Cohen has long had a reputation for astonishing audiences with his musical authority and blistering virtuosity. Cohen returns to the Lied to celebrate the music of composer Franz Liszt after an unforgettable performance in our 2013-2014 season!


Kelli O’Hara

June 12, 7:30pm

In-person and virtual tickets available

One of Broadway’s biggest stars performs songs from her acclaimed career on stage and screen. Winner of a 2015 Tony Award® for her performance in the Broadway revival of “The King and I,” O’Hara has also co-starred with Matthew Broderick in “Nice Work If You Can Get It” and with Harry Connick, Jr. in “The Pajama Game.” Her engagements as a soloist have led to concerts at the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall and venues across the world!


Paula Poundstone

July 24, 7:30 p.m.

In-person and virtual tickets available

A revered panelist on NPR’s “Wait, Wait . . . Don’t Tell Me,” Paula Poundstone was the first woman to host the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, is the recipient of an American Comedy Award for Best Female Stand-up Comic and was recognized by TIME magazine for one of “The Top 5 Funniest Stand-Up Specials Ever.” Don’t miss her hilarious return to the Lied stage!