Maria Friedman, Brian d'Arcy James and More to Join Pittsburgh Symphony for PLAY IT AGAIN, MARVIN!, 6/28
J. Ernest Green, often a frequent collaborator with the late Marvin Hamlisch, recently conducted at Wolf Trap. Green is the principal conductor at the McClean Symphony and a cover conductor with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, where he has worked with such artists as Metropolitan Opera star Denyce Graves, Sir James Galway, Pinchas Zuckerman and Stanislaw Skrowaczewski. Green also recently conducted the Philadelphia Orchestra. He is also the artistic director of Live Arts Maryland and the music director of the Annapolis Chamber Orchestra and Annapolis Chorale. From 1995 to 1998, he was the principal guest conductor of the Boston Aria Guild and has served as the conductor for the Teatro Lirico d'Europa in Paris. Green was the music director for the Young Victorian Theatre Company from 1985 to 2008. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in 1993 and in 1986 made his international debut conducting performances with the Fundacão Orquestra Sinfonica de Brazil, Associacão Opera de Brasilia and the Orquestra Jovem de Brasilia. From 2004 to 2007, Green served as the music director of the Mozart Festival Opera, where he lead productions of "Don Giovanni" and "Le Nozze di Figaro," "The Magic Flute," "La Traviata" and Rossini's "The Barber of Seville." Known for his adventurous and creative programming as he pushes the boundaries of the concert hall, Green has created several "fusion" programs combining standard concert repertoire with popular and contemporary music, which he has lead with orchestras both here and abroad. In addition, he has received acclaim for his concert productions of operas and other stage works, among them Verdi's "La Traviata," "Sweeney Todd," and, most recently, Rodgers and Hammerstein's "South Pacific." Green has appeared with many orchestras including: the Philadelphia Orchestra with Marvin Hamlisch, The National Symphony Orchestra with Denyce Graves for the National Martin Luther King Day concert at the Kennedy Center, The Florida Orchestra, Cumberland Valley Chamber Orchestra, Annapolis Symphony, the Sophia Symphony and Varna Symphony (Bulgaria), Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, Lincoln Symphony, Orquestra Sinfonica Nacional (Santo Domingo), Mesa Symphony, Cumberland Valley Chamber Players and the Trinity Chamber Orchestra (Cleveland). He has toured with the Ballet Arabesque (Bulgaria) the Ballet Theatre of Maryland, Mozart Festival Opera and the Teatro Lirico d'Europa. Green's opera credits include the Hawaii Opera Theatre, Teatro Lirico d'Europa, Boston Aria Guild, Indiana Opera North, Associacão Opera de Brasilia, Boston Academy of Music and the Young Victorian Theatre Company.
Brian d'Arcy James most recently appeared as Banquo in the Lincoln Center Theater production of "Macbeth" alongside Ethan Hawke directed by Jack O'Brien. James is a two-time Tony Award nominee, for his performance of Shrek in "Shrek the Musical" (winner of the Outer Critics Circle Award and the Drama Desk Award for that role) and also as Sidney Falco in "Sweet Smell of Success." He previously starred as Bick Benedict in The Public Theater's production of the new musical "Giant."Prior to that, he earned rave reviews on Broadway in the play "Time Stands Still" starring along- side Laura Linney, Christina Ricci and Eric Bogosian at the Cort Theater. James originated the role of Dan Goodman in the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Next to Normal" at Second Stage Theater and reprised his role in the subsequent Broadway production. Other Broadway and Off-Broadway credits include "The Wild Party," "The Good Thief" (Obie Award Winner), "Port Authority" (Lucille Lortel Winner), "The Lieutenant of Inishmore," "The Apple Tree," "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels," "Titanic," "Carousel" and "Blood Brothers." James' film work includes the Oren Moverman film "Time Out of Mind" starring Richard Gere, "Admission" with Tina Fey and Paul Rudd, "Bird in a Box" (short), the Ed Burns film "Fitzgerald Family Christmas," "Game Change," "Friends with Kids" and "Ghost Town." On the television side, James most recently shot the F/X pilot "Hoke" starring Paul Giamatti. He appeared in the NBC series "Ironside" and CBS's "The Good Wife." Prior to these, he starred in the NBC television show "Smash" as Frank Houston opposite Debra Messing. He also appeared as a recurring character on Showtime's "The Big C" starring Laura Linney. Other television credits include "Person of Interest," "Rescue Me" and "Cashmere Mafia."
Two-time Grammy Award and regional Emmy Award winner Sylvia McNair lays claim to a three-decade, stellar career in the musical realms of opera, oratorio, cabaret and musical theater. Her journey has taken her from the Metropolitan Opera to the Salzburg Festival, from the New York Philharmonic to the Rainbow Room, from the Ravinia Festival to The Plaza, from the pages of The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal to the London Times and the cover of Cabaret Scenes. Having appeared as a soloist multiple times with nearly every major opera company and symphony orchestra in the world, this songbird has flown the classical coop. She's retracing her star route now with Gershwin, Porter, Sondheim and Bernstein. Numerous Pops appearances with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony and others continue the reincarnation of her musical gifts in the most remarkable ways with the most rewarding results. It would be difficult to top McNair's invitations to sing the Bach B-minor Mass with the Vienna Philharmonic for Pope John Paul II at the Vatican and a recital for the U.S. Supreme Court by special request of Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. But her engagements for nine of the last 11 summers at the Ravinia Festival with Broadway legends John Raitt, George Hearn and Brian Stokes Mitchell are what her dreams are made of. Her Great American Songbook cabaret shows have been heard in New York at the Rainbow Room, Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Savoy Room at Sheldon Hall, The Colony in Palm Beach, Feinstein's at the Regency, the Aspen Music Festival and the famed Oak Room of the Algonquin Hotel. McNair has more than 70 recordings ranging from Mozart arias with Sir Neville Marriner and the Academy of St.-Martin-in-the-Fields to the music of Jerome Kern and Harold Arlen with pianist Andre Previn. Most recently, McNair released a Christmas CD, Peace, and a disc of Latin American jazz standards called Romance. McNair earned a master's degree with distinction from the Indiana University School of Music, received honorary doctorates from Westminster College (1997) and Indiana University (1998), the Ohio Governor's Award for Outstanding Achievement in Arts and Entertainment (1999) and the Indiana Governor's Arts Award (2011). In 2007, McNair received the Gaudium Award from The Breukelein Institute for "extraordinary and distinctive contributions to the arts and public life." Visit SylviaMcNair.com for more.
Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts is owned and operated by Pittsburgh Symphony, Inc., a non-profit organization, and is the year-round home of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. The cornerstone of Pittsburgh's Cultural District, Heinz Hall also hosts many other events that do not feature its world-renowned orchestra, including Broadway shows, comedians, speakers and much more. For a full calendar of upcoming non-symphony events at the hall, visit heinzhall.org.