Luke Frazier to Bring BROADWAY FOR THE HOLIDAYS to Ohio University
Luke Frazier - founder and conductor of The American Pops Orchestra, Washington, DC's innovative hometown orchestra - will present "Broadway for the Holidays," a special concert not to be missed as part of the Ohio University "Performing Arts & Concert Series" on Monday, December 4 at 7:30 PM.
The show is co-presented by The Chaddock Group. Frazier, an Ohio University alumnus and native of Parkersburg, West Virginia, created the show and conducts the Ohio University Orchestra featuring a 150 voice chorus.
The show features special guest stars Hilary Morrow (Birdland Jazz Club), Mary Michael Patterson (Broadway's The Phantom of the Opera), Claybourne Elder ("Gossip Girl," Broadway's Sunday in the Park..) and Luke Hawkins (Star tap dancer from "America's Got Talent").
Highlights of this evening of classic seasonal songs include "Santa Baby," "The Christmas Song," "O Holy Night," "Merry Christmas, Darling," "River," and "Mele Kalikimaka."
The concert, directed by Kelly Crandall d'Amboise, takes place at Templeton-Blackburn Alumni Memorial Auditorium (47 East Union Street, Athens, OH). Tickets are available at (740) 593-1780 or www.Ohio.edu.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Luke Frazier, a rapidly rising star in the Pops world, has proven himself as both an innately musical conductor and a sensitive pianist. His commitment to re-envisioning pops programming has quickly established him as a dynamic force across the music community. Frazier has demonstrated his versatility and range by conducting in venues both grand and intimate, from Lincoln Center to Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center to the Rainbow Room. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Marvin Hamlisch put it best, calling Frazier "so talented, and sensitive to every nuance."
As a testament to his mission to reimagine pops programming, Frazier founded the American Pops Orchestra in 2015, presenting all original programming. His commitment to the American Songbook is also evident through his involvement on the Board of the Great American Songbook Foundation. In demand as a clinician, adjudicator, and speaker, Luke recently addressed the National Symphony Orchestra's "Summer Music Institute" students. He appeared as the Keynote Speaker for the National Society of Arts and Letters (NSAL) Award for Excellence in the Arts at the Kennedy Center and also addressed the VSA, an international organization for the arts and disability. In addition to founding the National Broadway Chorus in Washington DC, he presented an original program honoring the 100th anniversary of Ella Fitzgerald's birth with the DC Youth Orchestra in Spring 2017.
Mr. Frazier has worked with artists such as Angela Lansbury, Darren Criss, Vanessa Williams, Liz Callaway, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Mo Rocca, Lea Salonga, Laura Osnes, Eric Owens, Liza Minnelli, Chita Rivera, Rita Moreno, Lindsay Mendez, Renée Fleming, Michael Feinstein, Christine Ebersole, Elaine Paige, Arturo Sandoval, and Norm Lewis, among many others. Twitter: @LSFConductor | www.LukeFrazierMusic.com
Luke Frazier and THE AMERICAN POPS ORCHESTRA present innovative orchestral programming, featuring groundbreaking concepts to develop and inspire a new audience for the 21st century. This professional orchestra boasts outstanding musicians from New York and Washington DC. The American Pops presented six original orchestral programs in its opening 2015-2016 season, featuring leading Broadway singers, dancers, and actors.
Highlights of the first season included "Stairway to Paradise: A Gershwin Spectacular" starring two-time Tony Award winner Christine Ebersole - which was hailed by DC Metro Theater Arts for "inspired arrangements of beloved Gershwin songs that reinvigorate the material and highlight the skill of his musicians" - and "A Broadway Christmas" featuring Elaine Paige, the first Lady of the British Musical Stage. APO's second season included a 75th birthday concert for Barbra Streisand, hosted by Fran Drescher; a celebration of the 80s, hosted by Olympic champion Greg Louganis; and a special World War II-era evening, commemorating Veterans Day.
Other high-profile performances include a special event at The Kennedy Center hosted by Tommy Tune; the Hispanic Heritage Awards, with Presidential Medal of Freedom winner Arturo Sandoval, which was nationally broadcast on PBS; theatreWashington's Helen Hayes Awards; The Giving Pledge at the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of American History; the Beacon Prize, given by Human Rights First to honor commitment to the American ideals of freedom and human dignity; and the DC Standing Ovation Awards, celebrating excellence in the DC Public Schools
The APO made its New York debut in December 2015 at the all-star Edith Piaf Centennial Celebration at The Town Hall. According to The New York Times, "As much as any individual singer, what warmed thevening was the sumptuous lilt of the American Pops Orchestra, conducted by Luke Frazier." www.TheAmericanPops.org
Claybourne Elder is a Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel Award nominee best known for his performances in New York and on Broadway originating the roles of Buck in Bonnie and Clyde, Hollis in Stephen Sondheim's Road Show, and Ollie in Tennessee Williams' One Arm. He was also seen in the NY revivals of Two by Two (starring Jason Alexander), as Joe Jr. in Allegro, as Eddie in Do I Hear A Waltz and the Soldier in Sunday in the Park... both at City Center, as well as Off Broadway in Venice at The Public Theatre. Regionally he has played Joe in Angels in America Parts I and II directed by David Cromer, as George in Sunday in the Park... at the Signature Theatre (Helen Hayes Award Best Musical), as the Wolf/Cinderella's Prince in Moises Kaufman's production of Into the Woods. On television he played Pete O'Malley on the CW series "The Carrie Diaries." www.ClaybourneElder.com
Mary Michael Patterson hails from a small town west of Fort Worth, Texas. She grew up studying at the iconic theatre in the round, Casa Manana. It was there she knew she wanted to dedicate her life to the arts. Since graduating with highest honors from the University of Michigan's prestigious Musical Theatre department, she has worked all over the United States and on Broadway. Mary Michael most recently starred in the world premiere of Luck Be a Lady, a review celebrating the iconic music of Frank Loesser at Asolo Repertory Theatre. Other credits include Christine Daae in The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, the 2011 Broadway revival of Anything Goes, Liesl in The Sound of Music (Carnegie Hall), Marianne Dashwood in the world premiere of Sense and Sensibility: The Musical (Denver Center), Judy Haynes in White Christmas (Syracuse Stage), Kathy Selden in Singin' in the Rain (Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Music Theatre of Wichita) and Cosette in Les Miserables (Casa Manana Theatre). Concert work includes guest appearances with the newly formed American Pops Symphony Orchestra in Washington D.C., and the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra at the Shenandoah Valley Music Festival. She has also done numerous shows at the St. Louis MUNY, and Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera. Mary Michael is a certified Yoga teacher, and loves sharing the healing benefits of mindfulness. www.MaryMichaelPatterson.com
HILARY MORROW appeared with the American Pops in Cinderella: A Magical Musical Tale after her APO debut as a featured soloist in She Did it Her Way last season. She recently performed at the famed jazz club Birdland in New York City and at the Human Rights First Beacon Prize Awards. Last winter, she toured a musical theatre master class series for underserved schoolchildren in Maine with Maestro Luke Frazier. Previous credits include: Brünnhilde in Hugo Ball: a Dada puppet AdveNTurE!!/?1!!//, Snowella Mistletoe in A Very Pointless Holiday Spectacular, Charlotte Stackhouse in Let Trump Be Trump and Isabella Andreini in a one-woman show entitled, Oh, What Can't A Woman Do? She received her BA in musical theatre from American University and is a member of the National Broadway Chorus. hilarymorrow.squarespace.com
LUKE HAWKING is so thrilled and honored to me performing with the American Pops Orchestra. He has danced in the Broadway productions of Xanadu, Cirque du Soleil's Banana Shpeel (NYC) and Joya (Cancun, Mexico) as well as New York City Center Encores! productions of No, No, Nanette; Gentlemen Prefer Blondes; and On Your Toes. He has starred in many regional productions as Don Lockwood in Singin' in the Rain, Ren in Footloose, Huck in Big River, Bert in Mary Poppins, Action in West Side Story, Will Parker in Oklahoma!, Tulsa in Gypsy, Robert in The Drowsy Chaperone and Bill Calhoun in Kiss Me, Kate. His TV and Film credits include tap dancing alongside Channing Tatum in the Coen Brothers' movie Hail, Caesar!, the 2015 Tony Awards, "Gossip Girl," "One Life to Live," "America's Got Talent" and "The Colbert Report." Luke regularly teaches tap at The Broadway Dance Center, is co-owner of the Hawkins School of Performing Arts in Folsom California and Co-Artistic Director of The Hawkins Tap Company. Luke is a soloist tap dancer with the Manhattan Symphonie Orchestra that tours China annually. @luketaps | www.LukeHawkins.com
Kelly Crandall D'AMBOISE (Director) is thrilled to be the Resident Director of The American Pops Orchestra this season. Recent work includes choreography for the APO, Newsies! at Connecticut Repertory Theatre, Urinetown at Next Stop Theatre and Tick, Tick...Boom! at Convergence. Upcoming: You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown at Imagination Stage and Jesus Christ Superstar at CRT. As an Associate Director and/or Choreographer, Kelly has worked on numerous productions including Cabaret, La Cage aux Folles, The Studio, and Crazy for You at Signature Theatre, The Lincoln Center Hall of Fame 2017 and Babes in Toyland at Lincoln Center, the Broadway workshop of Cheer, and productions at South Coast Rep., North Shore Music Theatre, Westport County Playhouse, Trinity Rep, and Busch Gardens Entertainment. Broadway performance credits include the original company of The Boy from Oz with Hugh Jackman, Chicago, Susan Stroman's A Christmas Carol at MSG, and the national tour of The Producers. Film and TV credits include A Christmas Carol starring Jim Carrey and directed by Robert Zemeckis, What Women Want, Penn & Teller's Sin City Spectacular, The Tony Awards, and The Academy Awards with Robin Williams. Kelly is an Artistic Associate and Resident Casting Director at Signature Theatre.