Few venues better showcase The Bend’s arts culture than the Morris Performing Arts Center.
Nationally recognized musical acts and theatrical productions regularly make the Morris one of their stops. And its location is ideal — positioned in the heart of downtown South Bend with several hotels, restaurants, bars and other attractions within walking (or biking!) distance.
On top of all that, it’s an historic venue. The Morris opened in 1922. Over the years it has maintained its vintage architectural look while modernizing to accommodate today’s acts and audiences. In 1985, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Several major, headlining acts graced the Morris during its early years. Names like Houdini, Big Crosby, Elvis Presley and even Frank Sinatra.
Downturn in the 1950s gave way to a renaissance beginning the next decade. Consider some of the bands to roll through the Morris since then: Stevie Wonder, REO Speedwagon, The Eagles, ZZ Top, Aerosmith, Fleetwood Mack, B.B. King and more.
National theater productions to take up residence during recent years include Phantom of the Opera, Wicked and The Book of Mormon with more to come.
In short, the Morris is one of The Bend’s focal points. It pairs with a vibrant community theater to anchor a de facto arts and entertainment district.
Attending a show at the Morris can be the centerpiece of any visit here. Take a look at some signature events on the upcoming schedule:
Wednesday, April 24 | Underwater Bubble Show
Inspired by the famous “Cirque du Soleil,” this show is rich in stage effects like laser technology, snow cannons, soap bubble tornadoes and many more optical surprises. Adults and children alike are sure to enjoy the interactive and extremely visual presentation.
Saturday, April 27 | South Bend Symphony Orchestra
SBSO presents the Indiana Trust Pops Series — Out-of-This-World: A Sci-Fi Spectacular!
Friday, May 3 to Sunday, May 5 | Finding Neverland
Winner of Broadway.com’s Audience Choice Award for Best Musical, this classic tells the story behind one of the world’s most popular fictional characters — Peter Pan. The heartwarming journey follows J.M. Barrie, a playwright in search of inspiration until he meets for young brothers and their widowed mother.
Saturday, May 11 | South Bend Symphony Orchestra
SBSO presents the Jack M. Champaigne Masterworks Series — Pictures at an Exhibition.
Saturday, May 25 | PJ Masks! Save the Day
Your favorite heroic trio is back with a new, live musical show! Watch Catboy, Owlette and Gekko along with their new friend, PJ Robot, as they try to ward off sneaky villains on stage.
Friday, June 14 | Pulse FM Summer Series
Contemporary Christian band Tenth Avenue North is joined by former “American Idol” contestant Danny Gokey.
Friday, July 12 | Pulse FM Summer Series
Crowder and We Are Messengers hit the stage for another Pulse FM Summer Series event in downtown South Bend.
Friday, Aug. 9 | Pulse FM Summer Series
Amy Grant, who burst onto the scene as a teenager then became the first artist in Christian music to have a platinum record, is joined by I Am They.