The American Pops Orchestra and DC Youth Orchestra Program to Honor ELLA AT 100 at DC Parks

The American Pops Orchestra and DC Youth Orchestra Program to Honor ELLA AT 100 at DC ParksElla Fitzgerald is turning 100 and to celebrate her life and legacy, the DC Youth Orchestra Program (DCYOP) and The American Pops Orchestra (APO) are partnering once again. The two organizations will bring some of Fitzgerald's greatest hits to the DC community with free outdoor performances in two iconic DC parks.

The first concert will be held on Saturday, April 29 at Meridian Hill Park at 6:00 pm. The second will be held on Sunday, April 30 at the Marvin Gaye Park at 3:00 pm.

Hosted by Tamika Smith and featuring APO soloists Moya Angela from America's Got Talent, NBC's Maddie Baillio from Hairspray Live! and Rachelle Fleming, and under the direction of Maestro Luke Frazier, the event will feature Fitzgerald favorites including "A-Tisket, A-Tasket", "Just One of Those Things" and "The Lady is a Tramp" among many others. "DC has the most public park space of any city, is home to the nation's youth orchestra and is where Ella got her start. We wanted to celebrate Ella Fitzgerald's centennial with two free concerts in the park and are thrilled to partner with APO and its incredible roster of artists!" says Elizabeth Schurgin, Executive Director at DCYOP. As to why the DC Youth Orchestra, Maestro Luke Frazier, founder and conductor at The American Pops Orchestra-recently named one of the Washingtonian's 40 under 40 to watch-explains that "DCYOP is developing the next generation of orchestra musicians and patrons of the arts. As an Artist-in-Residence at this great organization, I am proud of our work together in bringing the magic of song and music to the greater DC community."

Since1960, the DC Youth Orchestra Program (DCYOP) has been an integral part of the Washington community fostering the musical development of more than 50,000 youth. The first youth orchestra to perform at the Kennedy Center, DCYOP has toured 22 countries, played for US presidents and diplomats, and worked with esteemed musicians Copland, Maazel, Rostropovich, and most recently, Gustavo Dudamel and Yo-Yo Ma. The program has received the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award and the Mayor's Award for Outstanding Contributions to Arts Education. DCYOP provides group lessons and ensemble opportunities to youth ages 4-18. DCYOP is proud to be an inclusive program and welcomes all students with a desire to learn, regardless of background, socioeconomic status or ability. Our 600 students represent 200 different schools and 100 unique zip codes. For more information visit www.dcyop.org.

American Pops Orchestra (APO) was founded in 2015 by Maestro Luke Frazier with the aim of breathing new life into orchestra pops programming and inspiring new audiences to discover the wealth of material in the Great American Songbook in dynamic ways. APO, along with the National Broadway Chorus-also founded and directed by Luke Frazier-is a part of the National Broadway Collective. For more information visit www.theamericanpops.org.

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