2009 Boston Pops Season To Include
Barbara Cook, Linda Eder, Michael Feinstein
The Music of Richard Rodgers and more

With Keith Lockhart picking up the baton for his 15th season as Conductor of the Boston Pops, the 2009 season will be highlighted by performances from such Broadway and cabaret artists as Barbara Cook, Linda Eder, Michael Feinstein, John Pizarelli, Michael Cavanaugh and more. The season will also feature a celebration of the music of Richard Rodgers, an evening devoted to film scores, and two special concerts honoring two of the Pops’ most beloved conductors, Harry Ellis Dickson and the legendary Arthur Fiedler.

Prior to the official season opening on May 6, the Pops will release its newest CD, the "Red Sox Album," produced in conjunction with the Boston Red Sox and Major League Baseball, on Monday, April 6 (Opening Day of the Red Sox season). Performances throughout the season will include music from the new recording, along with baseball themed segments, special celebrity narrators and film clips acknowledging America's favorite pastime.

Featuring the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, the CD includes new arrangements of Fenway’s fan anthem “Sweet Caroline,” “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” Sousa’s classic “Stars and Stripes Forever,” and a musical version of “Casey at the Bat.”

The 2009 schedule includes the following:

Opening Night At Pops
with Barbara Cook - May 6

Broadway legend Barbara Cook joins Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops for the season opener, which begins with a festive pre-concert reception for all attendees. Cook, “Broadway’s favorite ingénue” in the heyday of musical theater, is celebrated for her distinctive artistry as a concert, cabaret, and recording artist. The concert will also feature a performance of Aaron Copland’s “Lincoln Portrait” to mark the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth. (This program will repeat on May 7.)

Michael Cavanaugh Sings Billy Joel
May 8 & 9

The “Piano Man” himself picked Michael Cavanaugh to star in his smash Broadway musical "Movin’ Out," choreographed and directed by Twyla Tharp. Cavanaugh was nominated for a Tony Award for his vivid performance as Joel’s onstage alter ego. He'll bring his high-energy vocals and piano playing to such show-stoppers as “Uptown Girl” and “Just the Way You Are.” Steven Reineke, the newly appointed conductor of the New York Pops, makes his Boston Pops debut as the evening’s conductor.

John Pizzarelli, with Maya Beiser
May 12 & 13

Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops’ commitment to the rich multiplicity of genres that reflect today’s music scene is showcased in a program featuring virtuoso jazz guitarist and singer John Pizzarelli along with avant-garde cellist Maya Beiser. A consummate entertainer, Pizzarelli is as at home with anything from a classic standard from the American Songbook to a cool jazz reverie and a smoky late-night ballad. Beiser’s impressive artistry has captivated audiences around the world with genre-bashing music that stretches the limits of her instrument’s expressive potential. She will perform the world premiere of a suite by renowned film composer James Newton Howard based on his score for M. Night Shyamalan’s suspense movie, "The Village."

Ballets Russes - May 19
Keith Lockhart and the Pops honor the Ballets Russes and its founder Serge Diaghilev as part of a city-wide celebration of the legendary company’s 100th anniversary. Renowned as the most influential dance company of the 20th century, the Ballets Russes created groundbreaking creative partnerships among some of the most innovative choreographers, composers, dancers, and designers in history, forever altering the world of dance.

Tribute to Harry Ellis Dickson - May 20
Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops honor one of Boston’s favorite conductors, the late Harry Ellis Dickson, the Pops’ former Associate Laureate Conductor. As Arthur Fiedler’s associate for 44 years, Dickson helped make classical music accessible and enjoyable for millions of new listeners. In honor of the 100th anniversary of the conductor’s birth, this special tribute to “Mr. Pops” includes some of the maestro’s favorites, including Offenbach’s sparkling "Gaité Parisienne" and the music of Leroy Anderson.

Baseball Night - "The Red Sox Album" - May 21 - 23
Celebrating the release of the Boston Pops’ latest CD, the "Red Sox Album" (produced in conjunction with the Boston Red Sox and Major League Baseball), this rousing concert, led by Keith Lockhart and showcasing music drawn from the CD, features film clips and a slate of baseball classics, from Fenway fan anthem “Sweet Caroline” and “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” to a charming musical version of “Casey at the Bat.” Baseball fans will also be treated to some of America’s patriotic favorites, including the “Star-Spangled Banner,” “God Bless America,” and “Stars and Stripes Forever,” as well as a new version of the Dropkick Murphys’ “I’m Shippin’ Up to Boston,” the theme song for Jonathan Papelbon’s trademark Irish step dance.

Film Night - May 26 & 27
Boston Pops Laureate Conductor and film composer John Williams leads the orchestra in a wide-ranging program of music for film, featuring film excerpts to accompany some of his best-loved scores. The program also includes the world premiere of his "Concerto for Viola and Orchestra," featuring Boston Pops principal violist Cathy Basrak.

Film Night - May 28 - 30
Legendary director Stanley Donen helped reinvent the movie musical in the last half of the 20th century. John Williams leads the orchestra in a salute to Donen's achievements with a program drawn from some of the director’s most unforgettable MGM musicals, including "Singin’ in the Rain," "Funny Face," and "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers." (The May 30 program will include a special appearance by Mr. Donen.)

Benny Goodman Birthday Celebration / Fiedler Tribute
June 2 & 5

The Boston Pops salutes swing clarinetist Benny Goodman on the 100th anniversary of his birth with a program that celebrates the “King of Swing’s” phenomenal impact as a virtuoso instrumentalist and dynamic bandleader. Featuring Boston Pops principal clarinetist Thomas Martin, the program will get Symphony Hall jumping with the hits Goodman made famous, from “Sing, Sing, Sing” to “Let’s Dance.” The evening of June 5th, led by Keith Lockhart, also features the annual tribute to Arthur Fiedler, who reigned over the Pops for nearly half a century and elevated the orchestra into a national institution. Special film clips will feature historic footage of Fiedler and Goodman.

Gospel Night with the New Edwin Hawkins Singers - June 6
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the rousing classic “Oh Happy Day,” Edwin Hawkins and the New Edwin Hawkins Singers and band join the Boston Pops Gospel Choir, the orchestra, and conductor Charles Floyd for an exuberant evening of Gospel music. Floyd, who recently conducted the inaugural concert at the Lincoln Memorial, has helped turn this annual event into one of the Pops’ most eagerly anticipated evenings.

Linda Eder Sings Judy Garland - June 9 - 10
One of the most gifted and versatile contemporary vocalists on the scene today, Linda Eder joins Keith Lockhart and the Pops for an evening celebrating the extraordinary musical legacy of Judy Garland. Drawing from her acclaimed CD "By Myself," Eder lends her rich expressive vocals to songs the legendary Garland made famous, from “Me and My Shadow” to “Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart” and the unforgettable “Over the Rainbow.”

Apollo 11 Anniversary - June 12 - 13
Marking the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing, Keith Lockhart and the Pops celebrate with an evening of stirring music, including Gustav Holst’s colorful "The Planets." The program integrates footage of the historic lunar landing provided by NASA and includes a newly commissioned film with music, created especially for the occasion. The program also invites the audience to join in on a special sing-along of songs about all things lunar, from “Moon River” to “Fly Me to the Moon.” This concert will also feature a performance of Aaron Copland’s “Lincoln Portrait” to mark the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth.

A Richard Rodgers Celebration - June 16 - 18
One of the most celebrated composers in the history of musical theater, Richard Rodgers forged an astonishing career that spanned six decades and countless awards from the Pulitzer to Tonys, Grammys, and Oscars. A veteran of stage and screen, he wrote (with lyricists Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein II), more than 900 published songs and 40 Broadway shows, including "Oklahoma!," "South Pacific," "Pal Joey," "Carousel," and "The Sound of Music." Keith Lockhart and the Pops will be joined for this concert by vocal fellows from the Tanglewood Music Center.

Michael Feinstein: The Sinatra Project - June 19 - 20
Four-time Grammy nominee Michael Feinstein is widely hailed as one of today’s most distinctive interpreters of American popular songs. In this special evening, the singer/ pianist turns his inimitable talents to the “Chairman of the Board” himself, the one and only Frank Sinatra. Feinstein draws from his latest CD release, "The Sinatra Project," for an evening of some of Sinatra’s most memorable songs in new arrangements by Bill Elliot. The orchestra will be led by one of the country’s great pops conductors, Erich Kunzel, in his first appearance with the Pops in twelve years. The June 20 program also includes a performance of Tchaikovsky’s lively "Rococo Variations" by Young Concert Artists’ 2008 first prize winner, cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan.

Let's Dance - June 21
The Boston Pops’ Season Finale is a rollicking dance party, with music that takes audiences from the percolating rhythms of swing to the pop favorites of today. Erich Kunzel leads the orchestra for this dazzling experience, for which a special dance floor will be installed in Symphony Hall. So grab your dance shoes!

As always, programs and artists are subject to change.

For the latest program information, call 617-CONCERT (266-2378). For tickets and information, call 617-266-1492 or visit www.bostonpops.org.

Keith Lockhart photo: Michael Lutch

-- OnStage Boston




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