What’s the latest at Durango Arts Center in 2013?

To paraphrase the great lyricist Oscar Hammerstein, the halls are alive with the sound of music and artists and audiences and students and children and adults and teachers and. ... well, you get the point.

Durango Arts Center has never been busier, nor has it offered the community so many events, activities and performances.

The Four Corners Commission exhibit opened Friday. This annual juried show displays works by more than 50 regional artists that depict life in the Four Corners.

In February, selected works by Ann Butler, Maureen May and Judith Reynolds will provide a visual backdrop for DAC’s signature Sweethearts of the Arts event. These ladies have given so much to the Durango arts community through their work and art, and this is Durango’s chance to say “thank you.” Their work will be displayed in the gallery, but please join us for a special evening Feb. 9 to honor these wonderful ladies. There will be food and wine along with pop and classical music by professional singers and musicians. Ticket prices have been reduced this year and are for sale online and at the DAC box office. Seating is limited to 200.

After the Sweethearts events, the Colorado Plateau Exhibit will incorporate the works of several Arizona, Colorado and Utah painters and sculptors. Then, the DAC’s annual Creativity Festival will bring traditional cultural masks from all over the world to Durango. Masks created by regional school children will be integrated into the formal exhibit.

The DAC theater will offer comedy, pop and classical music on January and February weekends and a Pulitzer Prize-winning play to kick off our inaugural DAC theater season March 5. The premier season will offer five full-length plays and musicals, plus the 10-Minute Play Festival.

Season tickets are available, so don’t miss a chance to see all of these offerings at a reduced price. Check the DAC website, www.durangoarts.org, for more information about theater performances. Auditions for two Neil Simon shows – the musical “They’re Playing Our Song” and the comedy “Plaza Suite” – will be held Feb. 16 in the DAC Theater.

I also want you to know about visual and performing arts classes that will be held at DAC after school for children and during the day, and in the evening for adults. We will also offer family classes on Saturdays.

Scholarships are available for our most popular children’s class, Girls’ Opportunities through Arts and Leadership (GOAL), for 5th through 8th-grade girls (Feb. 19–22).

All DAC classes are taught by highly qualified local professional artists. Check out their credentials on our website by clicking “Education,” then “DAC Teaching Artists.” You’ll be impressed.

So come visit DAC. You don’t have to be a member to visit our gift shop, art gallery, theater or use our extensive art library, although discounts are available in all these venues for members. Once you visit, I’ll bet you’ll want to become a member of this wonderful, private, nonprofit organization serving Durango and its surrounding communities.

tjswan01@yahoo.com. Terry Swan is the board president for Durango Arts Center.