The Philly POPS Little BIG Band to Give Free Performance in Malcolm X Park
The Philly POPS steps outside the concert hall for a celebration of the legendary musicians who walked the streets of West Philadelphia. A Musical Celebration of West Philadelphia features the music of John Legend and The Roots, Patti LaBelle, John Coltrane, Jill Scott, the Stylistics, Will Smith, and Boyz II Men, performed by The Philly POPS little BIG Band with guest vocalists Melanie Ashe and Jon Williams.
This POPS Outside performance takes place September 7, 2019 at 5pm in Malcolm X Park. A Musical Celebration of West Philadelphia is a community-inclusive event that helps connect the POPS with West Philly neighborhoods and shares the city's musical treasures with all.
This concert is made possible by the Office of Arts, Culture, and The Creative Economy (OACCE), through "Performances in Public Spaces." OACCE presents a number of free concerts and cultural events in local spaces throughout the summer through "Performances in Public Spaces," as part of their Arts in Action program. The Philly POPS is proud to be taking part in this program for the second year in a row with this performance, having presented A Musical Celebration of Germantown at Vernon Park the previous year.
The POPS BIG Band is composed of 18 musicians - saxophones, trumpets, trombones, drums, piano, guitar and bass. The BIG Band plays swing and jazz and has expanded its repertoire into all kinds of popular music from Latin to blues and rock. The Philly POPS BIG Band members were chosen for their passion for popular music. Each is also a teaching artist, adept at instructing the next generation of musicians.
The new Philly POPS BIG Band debuted on July 4, 2017 with two performances during the city of Philadelphia's Wawa Welcome America 2017 festival. In the morning, the ensemble played at the Celebration of Freedom ceremony and parade on Independence Mall. In the evening, the BIG Band opened the city's Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert and Fireworks show on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. NBC10 and Telemundo62 televised both performances.
The Philly POPS BIG Band is led by Matt Gallagher, principal trumpet for the POPS. He is an associate professor at University of the Arts and is one of the most sought-after trumpet players on the East Coast. He has performed with Broadway show production and such world-class organizations as the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. He's appeared with Aretha Franklin and Diana Krall, among many others and recorded with Céline Dion, Jennifer Lopez, Jennifer Hudson and LL Cool J.