Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Opens 2013-2014 PNC Pops Season with Broadway Sensation Brian Stokes Mitchell

Guest Conductor Ted Sperling leads Pittsburgh Symphony in performances of Broadway hits

PITTSBURGH – Take a trip to the Great White Way with Broadway superstar Brian Stokes Mitchell and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in “Broadway and Beyond with Brian Stokes Mitchell” on Oct. 17-20 at Heinz Hall.

This opening performance of the 2013-14 PNC Pops season features music from “Carousel,” “Funny Girl,” “Porgy and Bess,” “Man of La Mancha” and many more. Dubbed “The Broadway Baritone Extraordinaire,” Stokes Mitchell is one of Broadway’s best, presenting some of Broadway’s best for the first time on the Heinz Hall stage! He and the Pittsburgh Symphony will be joined on stage by the All Star College Chorus. Ted Sperling will conduct.

Performances are 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday.  Tickets, ranging from $25.75 to $119.75, can be purchased by calling the Heinz Hall box office at 412-392-4900, or visiting www.pittsburghsymphony.org.

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra would like to recognize and thank PNC for its 2013-2014 title sponsorship of PNC Pops. Fairmont Pittsburgh is the official hotel of the Pittsburgh Symphony.

Brian Stokes Mitchell
Brian Stokes Mitchell

Dubbed “The Last Leading Man” by The New York Times, Brian Stokes Mitchell has enjoyed a rich and varied career on Broadway, television and film, along with appearances in the great American concert halls. His musical versatility has kept him in demand by some of the country’s finest conductors and orchestras. He has performed selections from “Porgy and Bess” with the San Francisco Symphony at Carnegie Hall; works by Aaron Copland and various contemporary composers at the Hollywood Bowl with the L.A. Philharmonic; Broadway tunes at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. under the baton of Marvin Hamlisch; and jazz standards with Maestro John Williams at Disney Hall and with the Boston Pops. In 2005, he debuted Pulitzer prize-winning composer David Del Tredici’s “Rip Van Winkle” with the National Symphony Orchestra. His Broadway career includes performances in “Man of La Mancha” (Tony nomination and Helen Hayes Award); “Kiss Me Kate” (Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards); “Ragtime” (Tony nomination); August Wilson’s “King Hedley II” (Tony nomination); “Kiss of the Spider Woman;” “Jelly’s Last Jam;” “Oh, Kay!” and “Mail,” which earned him a Theatre World award for outstanding Broadway Debut. In 2010, Stokes returned to Broadway after seven years in concerts, film and TV. His television career began with a seven-year stint on “Trapper John, MD.” Numerous film and TV appearances recently include a guest role on “Glee,” “One Last Thing,” which debuted at Toronto’s 2005 Film Festival, recurring roles on “Crossing Jordan” and “Frasier,” PBS’ “Great Performances” and DreamWorks’ “The Prince of Egypt.”

Ted Sperling (photo by Laura Marie Duncan)
Ted Sperling (photo by Laura Marie Duncan)

Ted Sperling is a conductor, music director, arranger, singer, pianist and violinist. He was music director and conductor of the first Broadway revival of “South Pacific,” which won seven 2008 Tony Awards. In 2005, Sperling won the Tony and Drama Desk Awards (with Adam Guettel and Bruce Coughlin) for his orchestrations of “The Light in the Piazza,” for which he also was music director. He His recent performances include programs with the New York Philharmonic; “The Mikado” and “The Grapes of Wrath” at Carnegie Hall; “Brooklyn Village” with the Brooklyn Philharmonic and Brooklyn Youth Chorus; and a Leonard Bernstein tribute for New York City Opera as well as concerts with the Chicago Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, National Opera Orchestra, Alabama Symphony and Westchester Philharmonic. Sperling was music director and conductor of the 2009 Tony Award Nominated revival of “Guys and Dolls.” Other Broadway credits as music director/conductor/pianist include “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels”, “The Full Monty,” “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” “Kiss of the Spider Woman,” “Angels in America,” “My Favorite Year,” “Falsettos,” “The Mystery of Edwin Drood,” “Les Misérables,” “Roza” and “Sunday in the Park with George.” Sperling’s work as a stage director includes the world premieres of four musicals: “See What I Wanna See,” “V-Day,” “Charlotte: Life? Or Theater?” and “Striking 12,” as well as a revival of “Lady in the Dark.” He has conducted the scores for the films “The Manchurian Candidate” and “Everything Is Illuminated,” and directed the short film, “Love Mom,” starring Tonya Pinkins, which has been shown in five international festivals. Sperling was a recipient of the 2006 Ted Shen Family Foundation Award for leadership in the musical theater and is the director of the Music Theater Initiative at the Public Theater, as well as the Creative Director of the 24-Hour Musicals.

 The All-Star College Chorus is led by Robert Page and Christine Hestwood and includes students from California University of Pennsylvania, Community College of Allegheny County, Chatham University, Point Park University, Slippery Rock University, University of Pittsburgh, Washington & Jefferson College and Waynesburg University.

Editors Please Note:

Oct. 17-20, 2013

Heinz Hall
TED SPERLING, conductor
ALL-STAR COLLEGE CHORUS (Robert Page and Christine Hestwood, directors)

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