Ridgefield Playhouse to Welcome Bernie Williams, 6/8
The legendary Yankees slugger and chart-topping guitarist, Bernie Williams will return to The Ridgefield Playhouse on Sunday, June 8, as both a musician and award-winning athlete. After one of the most storied careers in baseball (which included four Gold-Glove awards, six American League pennants and an ALCS MVP award), Bernie Williams launched his second career as a jazz guitarist and didn't miss a beat. Having topped the contemporary jazz Billboard Chart with #1 singles, recorded albums with guests as varied as Bruce Springsteen and Jon Secada, and having accepted an invitation to sit in with The Allman Brothers Band at their storied Beacon Theatre residencies, Williams instantly established himself as a formidable talent. An afternoon Celebrity Softball Game with Bernie and Friends in the ballpark adjacent to the Playhouse will start at 1 p.m. A No. 109 Cheese & Wine complimentary wine and cheese tasting will take place in the lobby from 7 to 7:45 p.m. Bernie takes the stage at 8 p.m. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Hillside Food Outreach and the Playhouse Arts for Everyone Program. Piccolo Pizza & Jazzeria (24 Prospect St., Ridgefield) is offering a free glass of wine with dinner the night of the show when tickets/stubs are presented. This event is part of the No. 109 Cheese & Wine Art, Wine and Jazz Series?and is underwritten by Anita and Nicholas Donofrio with partial underwriting by Cultec.
A modern-day multi-talented Renaissance man, Bernie Williams grew up in Puerto Rico where he learned classical guitar at an early age and was to focus on a career in music, that is until the Yankees drafted him. The rest may be sports history, but Bernie Williams is also making his mark in the music world. He has developed a fresh style of jazz influenced by his classical music background along with Brazilian, pop and Latin rhythms. His albums include Moving Forward and The Journey Within. Williams has also written a book, Rhythms of the Game: The Link between Musical and Athletic Performance (2011).
Bernie Williams is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, both in his baseball career and in music. He performed at the Latin Recording Academy's Person of the Year tribute to Gloria Estefan and at the final home game played at historic Yankee Stadium in 2009.
For tickets ($90 Gold Circle Meet & Greet; $70 orchestra, $60 mezzanine/balcony; All tickets include admission to the softball game; $20 game only by calling the box office), call or visit the box office at The Ridgefield Playhouse, (203) 438-5795.The Ridgefield Playhouse is a not-for-profit performing arts center located at 80 East Ridge, parallel to Main Street, Ridgefield, CT; ridgefieldplayhouse.org.