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January 27, 2009

Media Contact: Beverley Golden
News and Information
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.566.7303 or 903.330.0495 (cell)

UT Tyler Features Twyla Tharp, Billy Joel Musical 'Movin' Out'

Movin' Out photo from Cowan CenterThe choreography of the legendary Twyla Tharp and the music of Grammy-winner Billy Joel will take center stage at The University of Texas at Tyler R. Don Cowan Fine and Performing Arts Center, Susan Thomae-Morphew, Cowan Center director, announced.

Sponsored by Citizens Bank, “Movin’ Out” will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 10. Media sponsors are KLTV, East Texas Radio Group and Lamar Advertising.

Some content is not suitable for young audiences.

Tickets are $66, $56, $46, $41 and $26 and can be purchased by calling the UT Tyler Cowan Center box office, 903.566.7424, or online at www.cowancenter.org. The box office hours are 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

During the year it premiered, it was declared “the #1 show of the year” by Time Magazine. “Movin’ Out” brings 24 Billy Joel classics to new life as it tells the story of five life-long friends during two turbulent decades.

Conceived by Tharp, the powerful musical is set in the ‘60s and deals with the characters’ experiences with the Vietnam War. It premiered in 2002 at the Richard Rodgers in New York City and ran for three years. A national tour opened in 2004 and also ran for three years.

Joel fans will recognize the principal characters from some of his recordings. Brenda and Eddie, James, Judy and Tony appear in Joel’s songs Scenes from an Italian Restaurant, James, Why Judy Why and Anthony in Movin’ Out, respectively.

While the dancers act out the plot, the vocals are performed by a pianist and band that are suspended on a platform above the stage.

Tharp was honored in 2008 with a Kennedy Center Award. For “Movin’ Out” Tharp received the 2003 Tony Award, 2003 Astaire Award, Drama League Award for Sustained Achievement in Musical Theater and both the Drama Desk Award and the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Choreography.

For the London production, she won the Best Choreography (musical theatre) Award from the United Kingdom's Critics' Circle National Dance Awards 2006.

Joel is aan American rock musician and singer/songwriter legend. He released his first hit song, Piano Man in 1973. Joel is the sixth best-selling recording artist in the United States having had Top 10 hits in the '70s, '80s and '90s.

He also is a six-time Grammy Award winner and has sold in excess of 150 million albums worldwide. Joel was inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame in 1992, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999 and the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in 2006.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. Nearly 90 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 6,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.


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