Young People's Chorus Of NYC Celebrates 30th Anniversary In Annual Benefit Concert
The Young People's Chorus of New York City (YPC) and Artistic Director/Founder Francisco J. Núñez celebrate the chorus' 30th anniversary in its 2018 Annual Benefit Concert, to be held at Jazz at Lincoln Center on Monday, March 5, at 7:00 p.m. This year's musical guests are Tony Award-winning, Broadway songwriting duo Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, whose works for the stage include Anastasia and Once On This Island; singer and actress Jenn Colella, currently starring in Broadway's Come From Away; singer/actor Jordan Donica, whose roles include Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson in the national tour of Hamilton; and classical baritone Lester Lynch, who has performed at Teatro alla Scala, Covent Garden, and with the San Francisco Opera, among other companies.
This year's Benefit Concert features a variety of musical performances, including Ahrens and Flaherty's "Why We Tell the Story" (from Once On This Island) sung by over 400 YPC choristers to celebrate YPC's three-decade story of empowering young people through music. The evening's performances are directed and choreographed by Jacquelyn Bird.
The concert will be followed immediately by a dinner in the Ballroom of the Mandarin Oriental at 80 Columbus Circle and Broadway, where YPC will honor three individuals whose generosity strengthens YPC's efforts on behalf of New York City children. YPC's corporate honorees are Michael Fraccaro, chief human resources officer of MasterCard, and Saori Kawano, president and founder of Korin Japanese Trading Company. YPC's Humanitarian Award honoree is Hiroko Onoyama, a cherished, longtime YPC board member.
The Young People's Chorus of New York City is a world-renowned youth chorus founded in 1988 on a mission of diversity and artistic excellence by Artistic Director Francisco J. Núñez, a MacArthur Fellow and Musical America's 2018 Educator of the Year. While harnessing the power of music to fulfill the potential of children, the program has heightened an awareness of the ability of children to rise to unforeseen levels of artistry. Over 1,600 children from ages 8 to 18 participate annually in YPC through its after-school, in-school, and community programs. YPC's repertoire ranges from renaissance and classical traditions to gospel, folk, pop, contemporary, and world music. YPC has performed on four continents, has won over a dozen gold medals in international choral competitions, and has invigorated the repertoire for young voices by commissioning and premiering over 100 compositions from today's most distinguished composers. YPC is a recipient of the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, America's highest honor for youth programs. For more information, visit ypc.org.
Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty have been collaborators in musical theater and film since 1983. For Broadway's Ragtime, they won Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards. They were nominated for two Academy Awards and two Golden Globes for Twentieth Century Fox's animated feature Anastasia. They are currently represented on Broadway by two hit shows-Anastasia and the revival of Once on This Island. For more information, visit ahrensandflaherty.com.
Jenn Colella is a Tony Award nominee for her role as Capt. Beverley Bass in Broadway's Come From Away, a role that garnered her a San Diego Theatre Critics Circle Award, a Helen Hayes Award, Toronto's My Theatre Award, a Dora Award, an Outer Critics Circle Award, and the Drama Desk Award for outstanding featured actress in a musical. She initially pursued a career in standup comedy before moving on to her Broadway debut and an Outer Critics Circle nomination for her role as Sissy in Urban Cowboy. She has since appeared on Broadway in High Fidelity, Chaplin, and a year-long run of If/Then and off-Broadway in such productions as Don't Quit Your Night, Lucky Guy and Closer Than Ever. She also appears on TV as a frequent guest star and teaches master classes at Juilliard, NYU, the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Columbia, and other universities across the country. For more information, visit jenncolella.com.
Jordan Donica has performed on Broadway in The Phantom of the Opera (Raoul) and will be featured in the upcoming Bart Sher-helmed production at Lincoln Center Theater of My Fair Lady (Freddy Eynsford-Hill). He recently starred in the original national tour of Hamilton (Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson) in Los Angeles and San Francisco, and among his regional credits are South Pacific, The Greenshow; Jesus Christ Superstar in the role of Jesus; and as Romeo in the Shakespeare in the Park production of Romeo and Juliet. He was featured in the Kennedy Center's Washington National Opera Gala and Pasadena Pops Symphony's Gershwin and Friends conducted by Michael Feinstein; and the American Songbook Hall of Fame. For more information, visit jordan-donica.com.
Lester Lynch, widely known for his charismatic portrayals and commanding voice, has established himself among today's most important dramatic baritones on the opera and concert stages throughout Europe and in the U.S. He records principally for the Pentatone label, with recent recordings including Verdi's Otello, in the role of Iago with the Gulbenkian Orchestra, and a disc of spirituals and hymns, On My Journey Now. For more information, visit lesterlynch.com.