BY PAUL LEIGHTON
---- — BEVERLY — The combination of “free” and “Friday” is tough to beat, especially at a nice location like Endicott College’s relatively new performing arts center.
Starting tomorrow, the ocean-side Beverly college will kick off the second year of its “Fridays in the Rose” series. The series offers free performances, open to the public, from noon to 1 p.m. at the Rose Performance Hall in the Walter J. Manninen Center for the Arts, a $17 million building that opened in 2009.
Opera singer Stephanie Scarcella will open the series tomorrow.
“The Rose is a beautiful performance hall,” said Rebecca Kenneally, chairwoman of performing arts at Endicott College. “We want to encourage people to come and enjoy.”
Kenneally said Endicott has routinely offered performances and workshops for its students on Fridays, when many students have a lighter course schedule. The college has a School of Visual and Performing Arts and offers minors in music, theater and dance.
Last year, school officials decided to open up the performances to the general public.
“Our center is a community center,” Kenneally said. “It is for our students, of course, but it is also meant to be a hub of visual and performing arts on the North Shore, not just for Endicott College. We thought it would be a special way to connect enriching performances not just for our students but for the public as well.”
Scarcella, tomorrow’s performer, is a mezzo-soprano from Wyoming who stayed in New England after graduating from the Boston Conservatory. She has performed most recently with the Boston Opera Collaborative.
The second show, on Oct. 4, will feature a half-dozen members of the Endicott College faculty performing in a variety of styles, including opera, jazz, musical theater and chamber music.
On Nov. 15, an ensemble called Quartet For-Te will perform. The string quartet includes Loren Lee, a violin professor and director of the chamber ensemble group at Endicott College who is also a member of Symphony by the Sea. It also includes Caroline Lieber on violin, John Bumstead on cello and Karen McConomy on viola.
Three more shows will be scheduled during the second semester.
Tickets for all the performances are free and can be reserved at endicott.edu/centerforthearts or by leaving a message at the box office at 978-998-7700. Admission includes a light appetizer lunch following the performance.
Kenneally said people are also encouraged to visit the art galleries that are open to the public in Rose Hall.
“We have everything in one building,” she said.
Staff writer Paul Leighton can be reached at 978-338-2675 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If You Go ... What: Fridays in the Rose Where: Endicott College's Rose Hall When: Mezzo-soprano Stephanie Scarcella, Sept. 13; Faculty recital, Oct. 4; Quartet For-Te, Nov. 15, all from noon to 1 p.m. Admission: Free Information: Reserve tickets at www.endicott.edu/centerforthearts or by leaving a message at the box office at 978-998-7700.