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Pit Stop Players Present DARK SIDE OF THE TUNE Concert, 10/30


The Pit Stop Players, a thirteen-member instrumental ensemble composed of veteran Broadway pit musicians, will kick off their third season with a concert at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music on Sunday, October 30, 2011 at 7:00 pm. The critically acclaimed group will offer creepy-themed music the night before Halloween, in a program titled "Dark Side of the Tune."

"I've always had a soft spot for music that scares the living daylights out of people," said Joshua Rosenblum, the group's founder and music director, "So we'll be ushering in Halloween with a few choice terrifying tunes. And if the music doesn't frighten anyone, my Michele Bachmann mask will."

Instead of traditional Halloween concert fare, such as "Night on Bald Mountain" and "The Sorcerer's Apprentice," the concert will include evocative but lesser-known creations by Bolcom, Ives, Prokofieff and Schubert, as well as five works composed especially for the occasion. The new offerings include pieces by Gary William Friedman (The Me Nobody Knows, The Electric Company), Josh Schmidt (Adding Machine, The Minister's Wife), Michael Starobin (Orchestrator: Sunday in the Park with George, Next to Normal), and the conductor's 15-year-old son, Julian Rosenblum, in his professional debut.

The Pit Stop Players, who collectively have played in pit orchestras for over 120 Broadway productions, include Ed Matthew, Steve Kenyon, and Don McGeen, woodwinds; Chris Jaudes, trumpet; Wayne Goodman, trombone; Dan Culpepper, horn; Robin Zeh, violin; Paul Woodiel, violin; Alissa Smith, viola; Mairi Dorman-Phaneuf, cello; Garah Landes, piano; Jeff Carney, bass; and Greg Landes, percussion.

Rosenblum, who founded the Pit Stop Players in 2009 as a means of giving Broadway musicians a chance to climb out of the pit and take center stage, says that nearly any genre is fair game for their programs, including traditional and contemporary classical, jazz, rock, fusion, and film music. However, the primary emphasis is on new compositions and arrangements, written and orchestrated specifically for the group.

The players will be in Halloween costumes, and audience members are encouraged to come dressed for the occasion as well.

Composer, conductor and pianist Joshua Rosenblum has led the orchestras for thirteen Broadway and Off Broadway shows, including Wonderful Town, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Music Man, Miss Saigon and Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas. He is also the composer/creator of BUSH IS BAD, the hit Off Broadway satirical revue, and the composer/co-lyricist of Fermat's Last Tango, Einstein's Dreams, Garbo and Me, and the forthcoming The Haunted Hotel. His instrumental music has been recorded on two CDs: Impetuosities and Sundry Notes, both on the Albany Records label. Rosenblum has written pieces on commission for Philip Smith, principal trumpeter of the New York Philharmonic; Ethel, America's premiere post-classical string quartet; and the Chase Brock Experience dance troupe, among many others. He teaches Composing for Musical Theater at Yale University, his alma mater, and was recently awarded a grant from the Signature Theatre in Washington, D.C., as part of the American Musical Voices Project: The Next Generation.

Gary William Friedman is the composer of the TONY nominated, OBIE Award winning musical The Me Nobody Knows. His other musical theater accomplishments include the award winning Taking My Turn, which was presented on PBS Television's Great Performance Series. In addition to the theater, his music spans the genres of jazz, film, symphonic and liturgical works. His orchestral, operatic and dance works have been commissioned and performed at venues including the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Lancaster Music Festival, the Columbus Symphony, The Festival at Sandpoint, Idaho, and Encompass New Opera Theatre. In addition to scoring features and highly acclaimed television films, he served as Music Director for TV's The Electric Company, for which he wrote many songs including the popular "Spider Man Theme Song". Friedman has co-produced and arranged several internationally acclaimed jazz recordings by his wife, Stevie Holland. Fanfare Magazine's review of Colloquy, Friedman's recent classical CD release, described Friedman as "a composer who has mastered his craft", and whose "music successfully combines accessibility with artistic integrity, lyricism with abstraction, and abundant heart with refined design."

Julian Rosenblum is currently a sophomore at Hunter College High School. A pianist and a percussionist as well as a composer, Julian has arranged pieces for his school concert band, and plays in both the concert and jazz bands. In addition to his musical interests, Julian is also an avid computer programmer and web developer. When he is not writing code or making music, he posts tri-weekly on his blog Julian plans to major in computer science in college, while sustaining his musical pursuits as a hobby.

Josh Schmidt is a composer/sound designer based in NYC. As Composer/Co-Author - A Minister's Wife (Lincoln Center), ADD1NG MACH1N3 (Minetta Lane), Whida Peru (59E59); Gift of the Magi (American Players Theatre); Incidental Scores: When the Rain Stops Falling (Lincoln Center) Fifty Words (MCC Theater). As Sound Designer - Crime and Punishment (59E59), many others. REGIONAL: Composer/Sound Designer for over 100 productions at venues across the country. RECORDINGS: ADD1NG MACH1N3, A Minister's Wife - both released on PS Classics and available on ITunes, Amazon, etc. ASSOCIATE ARTIST: Alley Theatre in Houston, Writers Theatre in Glencoe. MEMBER: ASCAP. AWARDS: Lortel, Outer Critics, Jeff, ASCAP, NEA/TCG.

Michael Starobin is an award-winning orchestrator and arranger working on Broadway and in Hollywood. He has orchestrated some of Broadway's most innovative musicals, such as Falsettos, Sunday in the Park with George, Assassins (2004 Tony Award for Best Orchestrations) and Next to Normal (2009 Tony Award for Best Orchestrations). He was the conductor and orchestrator for Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame, and contributed orchestrations to Disney's Once Upon a Mattress and Tangled, as well as to the film versions of Chicago and Nine. In 2009, the Queens Symphony performed the world premiere of his Sondheim Variations for string orchestra and percussion. His ongoing partnership with the Pit Stop Players includes three original pieces written specifically for the group.

$25 ($15 for Students) (or cash at the door). For more information, visit:

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