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Ray Charles sits at a piano. Other people playing instruments sit behind him

Dancing on Air

Many music legends have walked through the Norton Center halls, but when Ray Charles arrived, he didn’t walk – he danced. A full 36 days before Ray Charles’ October 18, 1985 performance, the Norton Center for the Arts officially sold…

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Five people look down at artwork lying on a table.

Cross-Campus Collaboration

What started as a casual chat between colleagues became a hands-on research project that will immortalize the work of Centre College students in the Norton Center permanent art collection archives. In January of 2023, Associate Professor of Art History Amy…

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Two people standing and pointing at a building under construction

The Coming of Age of an Idea

When Thomas A. Spragens stepped into office as the President of Centre College in 1957, he found a college desperately in need of growth and ready for change. Spragens knew that these changes weren’t going to come quickly or easily,…

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A boarded-up house sits behind a large tree with no leaves.

“We Were Here”: Sleettown

In February of 1864, the United States Colored Troops began enlisting free and enslaved African Americans, despite opposition from some Kentucky military officials and politicians. Brothers Henry and Preston Sleet, both enslaved in Boyle County, enlisted that same year- risking…

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Norton Center Salutes: G & J Pepsi

Norton Center Salutes recognizes the amazing people and organizations that sponsor our shows and events.  The name “Pepsi” first originated in 1898 when Caleb Bradham, a North Carolina pharmacist, renamed “Brad’s Drink”, a carbonated soft drink he created to serve…

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We Were Here: Origins of the Name

All photos were provided by the Pioneer Playhouse. The “We Were Here” exhibit is located in the Norton Center Grand Foyer and is free to the public. It is open Monday-Friday from 9 am-4 pm. For more information, call the…

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