Bernice Newell’s ‘Artist Course’ Concerts

— by Kim Davenport

Don’t miss this summer’s exhibit at the Tacoma Historical Society, Showtime in Tacoma: Theaters and Performers.

BerniceNewellOne of the highlights of the exhibit are artifacts from Bernice E. Newell, a newspaper writer, arts booster, and impresario who brought dozens of world-class musicians to Tacoma to perform in her ‘Artist Course of Concerts’ from 1904 to 1927.  35 autographed photographs of some of these artists, including Rachmaninoff, Kreisler, Sousa, Nijinsky, and the Ballet Russe, are on display as part of this exhibit, which also highlights two new books about Tacoma’s theater district.

In the early decades of the 20th century, Tacoma was a prime stop for touring artists, and boasted one of the finest theaters on the west coast, the Tacoma Theatre.  This, together with Newell’s enthusiasm for bringing great music to the City of Destiny, led to a wonderful range of experiences for Tacoma audiences to hear world-class classical musicians.

Details for visiting the Tacoma Historical Society exhibit are as follows:

June 7 – September 9, 2017
Tacoma Historical Society Museum
919 Pacific Avenue
Wednesday-Saturday, 11am-4pm
Free admission
(253) 472-3738 ~


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