Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (PressExposure) August 06, 2013 -- It's a new era for The Philly POPS® and a chance for audiences to share in the excitement of this first season under the baton of new music director Michael Krajewski. The Philly POPS opens its 2013-14 season with the theme "Viva Philadelphia!" - a celebration of the City and of Philadelphia's Italian spirit as well as a demonstration of the maestro's special love for vocal music.
It's a fitting theme, as the new maestro celebrates the City that will be another POPS home for this nationally recognized conductor. It's also fitting as this first series of The POPS 35th season falls on Columbus weekend, a time of special significance in a city with a rich Italian heritage.
With performances on Friday, October 11 through Sunday October 13, POPS concerts will continue to be presented in a series of Friday evenings at 8 p.m., followed by Saturday and Sunday matinees at 3 p.m. at Verizon Hall of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts on Avenue of the Arts in Philadelphia.
Frank Giordano, President & CEO of The Philly POPS, is very excited about this new season for The POPS. "The Philly POPS is all about fun," said The POPS' enthusiastic leader. "From the moment our guests enter The Kimmel Center, we plan to have surprises right there in the lobby of this magnificent concert hall each time we have a performance. It's just one of the many new features our audiences will come to love about going to a POPS concert." Krajewski shares his own enthusiasm. "I am very proud to have been selected to follow the great Peter Nero in this post. The Philly POPS is one of the most outstanding POPS orchestras in the world and the welcome I have received from the members of the orchestra and all Philadelphians is overwhelming and very much appreciated."
In this concert, Krajewski shares the stage with such talents as one of Philadelphia's own singing sensations, Eddie Bruce, the "Poperazzi" vocal trio and The POPS Festival Chorus. They will deliver tributes to one of Philadelphia's legendary singers, the great Mario Lanza, as well as to Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra and Andrea Bocelli. Instrumental arrangements from The Godfather will be on the program along with traditional favorites like Funiculi Funicula, plus a crowd-pleaser from the era of the "Hit Parade," That's Amore. Elton John's rousing anthem Philadelphia Freedom will celebrate the region's passionate sports fans.
The season reflects the creative instincts of Krajewski, who also leads successful series in Houston, Atlanta and Jacksonville, and is known for his excellent programming. "The Poperazzi trio is a great example of wonderful guest artists I've worked with in other cities, and I know Philadelphia audiences will embrace them too," Krajewski shared. Poperazzi features the talents of tenors George DeMott and Cody Shawn Gay and soprano Janien Valentine. The trio has toured nationally and internationally, been featured on PBS, and played on the Las Vegas Strip with a signature blending of opera, classical music and pop-inspired energy.
The direct Philadelphia connection in this program is guest artist Eddie Bruce who was born in South Philly, raised in Northeast Philly and now lives in Northern Liberties. Rarely has one of the great talents from our own city been showcased by The Philly POPS and audiences will take pride in this native son who has been praised by Michael Feinstein for his "great voice and stage presence." One of the premier interpreters of Tony Bennett's music in the country, he will perform the signature tunes of Mr. Bennett that he has performed from coast to coast - from LA to New York and with the Ocean City Pops and Hershey Pops. Audiences know Bruce well as he was the original host of the popular "Dancin' on Air" TV show, a frequent guest talk show host for eight years on WWDB-FM, a host of numerous Philadelphia celebrations including Mayor Nutter's Mummers Parade Press Conferences and has been one of the city's most popular bandleaders for years.
The season continues with the annual Holiday POPS! series, followed by the Sounds of Simon and Garfunkel and then a salute to Marvin Hamlisch featuring Donna McKechnie who starred in "A Chorus Line". It continues with the movie music of legendary John Williams and ends with the four original stars of Broadway's "Jersey Boys" now known as the Midtown Men in the music of the 60's.
Season subscriptions and Holiday POPS! tickets are currently for sale for all the 2013/2014 Philly POPS season. All individual tickets will be available starting August 20. Performances take place in Verizon Hall at The Kimmel Center of the Performing Arts at 300 S Broad St Philadelphia, PA 19102. Tickets may be purchased through http://www.phillypops.org or by phone at 215-893-1999.