Who Knew: Tilles Center for the Performing Arts on Long Island

Long Island, N.Y.  Call me “Long Island Ignorant,” but I was completely amazed to experience the Tilles Center for Performing Arts on the C.W. Post campus of Long Island University in Brookville.  I have interviewed several famous people in New York recently – at the United Nations and the French Cultural Center – but it never crossed my mind that such international celebrities also play Long island.  They do, at Long Island’s premier concert hall.

The piano sensation Lang Lang and Wynton Marsalis perform at this venue, as well as actual Broadway shows such as one of my very favorites, Avenue Q, along with classics such as Camelot, and HairsprayRita Moreno plays Tilles Center, as does the China Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, and the Moscow State Radio Symphony Orchestra.  Who knew?

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The incredibly talented Lang Lang of China, who performed at the Beijing Olympic Opening.

Itzhak Perlman, who I covered when he played Lincoln Center for Rotary last year (here), the East Village Opera Company, and the Yamato – the Drummers of Japan also play Long Island.

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Yamato-the Drummers of Japan in “Matsuri.”

How is such cultural richness outside Hicksville possible, I wondered.  The moment I met George Lindsay, General Manager of the Tilles Center, I knew.  Nephew of the former mayor of New York, John Lindsay, George has brought world culture to Nassau County.  Check out

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The New York Philharmonic plays the Tilles Center for Performing Arts at the C.W. Post.

From Garrison Keillor to Jack Hanna and his animal, the Tilles Center has it all.  Where else on Long Island can you experience Porgy and Bess or Cabaret?

Incredible Selection of Video from the Tilles Center

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Rasta Thomas’ Bad Boys of Dance.

As a kid, I spent my summers in Boston, watching the Pops on the Fourth of July on the banks of the Charles.  But I marvel that the Pops play here.  As does Marvin Hamlisch, Michael Feinstein, Patti LuPone, and Debbie Reynolds.

Even the Glenn Miller Orchestra and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater perform in this 2,200-seat auditorium, not to mention the legendary Bill Cosby.  The next time I want to experience Midori, or the Shanghai Quartet, or the Paul Taylor Dance Company, I will head for C.W. Post’s former estate, once owned by Charles and Marjorie Merriweather Post, and settle into the Tilles Center for a great show.

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Bill Cosby with his wife Camille Hanks attended the event at of the French Embassy in New York.

The Tilles Center hosts more than 100 performances by world-renowned artists in music, theater and dance each season.  Other artists and ensembles that have been presented by the Center are the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Seiji Ozawa, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, James Taylor, and the MET Orchestra with James Levine.

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With Wynton Marsalis at Cultural Services of the French Embassy in New York.

Long Island University has a rare treasure in George Lindsay, the man behind the curtain.  I tip my hat to George.  He is an asset to Long Island, a theatrical thought leader and cultural global citizen.

There is ample, free, on-site parking.  I took the LIRR from Penn Station in Manhattan and then hopped a cab ($12).  For more information, call the Tilles Center box office at (516) 299-3100.

See Stories by Jim Luce on: 

Art   |   China   |   Long Island   |    Music   |    Theater

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About Jim Luce: Thought Leaders & Global Citizens

View all posts by Jim Luce: Thought Leaders & Global Citizens
Jim Luce: Thought Leaders & Global Citizens
Jim Luce (www.lucefoundation.org) writes and speaks on Thought Leaders and Global Citizens. Bringing 26 years management experience within both investment banking and the non-profit sector, Jim has worked for Daiwa Bank, Merrill Lynch, a spin-off of Lazard Freres, and two not-for profit organizations and a foundation he founded. As Founder & CEO of Orphans International Worldwide (www.oiww.org), he is working with a strong network of committed professionals to build interfaith, interracial, Internet-connected orphanages in Haiti and Indonesia, and creating a new, family-care model for orphans in Sri Lanka and Tanzania.

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