The Plainfield Symphony once again brings its audience to Broadway in the upcoming November 17, 2018 concert under the baton of Maestro Charles Prince. The program entitled “The Gershwin Songbook” will feature selections from a number of his works including his much beloved Rhapsody in Blue, performed by award-winning pianist Richard Glazier. The program will also feature the world premiere of a work by Gershwin’s European contemporary Joseph Beer with his daughter Beatrice expected to be in attendance.
George Gershwin (1898-1937) was one of the most remarkable American composers of the 20th century, known for his Broadway musicals as well as his world famous orchestral compositions Rhapsody in Blue, An American in Paris and the opera Porgy and Bess. He is widely regarded as the man who brought “jazz into the concert hall.”
Since hearing Rhapsody in Blue for the first time at the age of 9, pianist Richard Glazier has became an expert in Gershwin repertoire and a collector of everything related to the golden age of the Great American Songbook. Mr. Glazier studied with the legendary pianist Menahem Pressler and has performed in every state of the union, at the United Nations and at Carnegie Hall as a “Steinway Artist.” Glazier's television program, “From Gershwin to Garland – A Musical Journey with Richard Glazier” has been shown on PBS stations around the country.
Joseph Beer (1908 –1987) was a composer, mainly of operettas, singspiele, and operas. Beer started composing music as a young man in Vienna in the 1930s. Beer, who was Jewish, fled Austria in 1938 for France while his family remained in Poland and were killed in Nazi extermination camps. He continued composing new works until the end of his life, and left a large number of works for the stage. Beer's family founded the Joseph & Hanna Beer Foundation to perpetuate the memory of the composer and to increase his recognition by a worldwide audience and inclusion in the standard operatic repertoire. We will be performing his orchestral suite entitled Triptych (Spiritual, Lullaby, Dance), composed in the early 1930’s.
We are pleased to welcome returning Broadway and stage vocal soloist Ron Raines. He is an American actor best known for his role as Alan Spaulding on the television soap opera Guiding Light. Raines is a 2012 Tony Award nominee for the acclaimed production of Sondheim’s Follies in which he starred opposite Bernadette Peters. He has performed in numerous musicals on Broadway and around the country and has appeared in concert with symphony orchestras.
Joining him for the first time with the PSO is Rebecca Faulkenberry, a stage and film/tv actress who has had lead roles from London’s West End to most recently on Broadway in Groundhog Day, the Musical. Previous Broadway roles incude Rock of Ages and Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark.
This program is made possible in part by a 2018 HEART (History, Education, Arts Reaching Thousands) Grant from the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.
The Plainfield Symphony is New Jersey's oldest community symphony and the third oldest in the country.
Season tickets for the 2018-2019 concerts are now on sale and can be purchased on our website, www.plainfieldsymphony.org. Tickets may also be purchased at the concert. For a brochure, please call (908)561-5140. Subscription concerts are held at the Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church located at 716 Watchung Avenue, Plainfield and begin at 7pm.