Category: 2018-19 Pops

Music from 'Star Wars,' 'Star Trek,' 'Lord of the Rings' and much more close Grand Rapids Symphony's 2018-19 Pops season

Grand Rapids Symphony   Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt often refers to film composer John Williams as “my hero.” Bernhardt and Williams have been friends for more than 25 years, ever since Williams, formerly conductor of the Boston Pops , first hired Bernhardt to guess conduct in Boston back in 1992. But Williams, a five-time Academy Award winner, is a hero to anyone who loves a good action and adventure film, whether it was composed by Williams or not. ... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Trumpeter Byron Stripling returns to GR Pops stage with 'Ragtime, Blues and All that Jazz'

The great jazz pioneer Louis Armstrong spent his life traveling the world as an ambassador for the musical form that’s America’s greatest contribution to the arts. Trumpeter and singer Byron Stripling has lived a similar life, performing the timeless music in the style originated by Armstrong and his contemporaries. “Nothing can ever get old in jazz, because it’s meant to be felt differently all the time,” Stripling said in an interview with the Lexington... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Celebrate the season with the Grand Rapids Symphony's annual Cirque de Noel show

Twinkling lights on evergreen trees with presents all around. Sleigh rides on new-fallen snow, partridges in pear trees, surrounded by ladies dancing while pipers pipe and drummers drum. When you think about it, Christmas not only is the most wonderful time of year, it’s the most visual, too. Everyone loves music at Christmas, but the Grand Rapids Symphony ’s annual Old National Bank Cirque de Noël gives you plenty to look at as well. Cirque de la Symphonie , a... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Join the Grand Rapids Pops for 'Sinatra and Beyond' with Off-Broadway star Tony DeSare this weekend

Entertainer Tony DeSare got his first taste of the spotlight in high school when he was asked to do a few songs to fill time between performances of his middle school and high school orchestras. The self-described shy kid sat down at a piano and played Georgia on My Mind , Fly Me to the Moon and a few more songs. “By the time I was done, the whole place was standing on their feet,” he told The Daily Press in Hampton, Virginia, in January . “I was never the... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Save 50 percent off Christmas cheer with Grand Rapids Symphony's 'Before It Snows!' ticket sale

That annual holiday headache is just around the corner. “What do I get for (fill in the blank) for Christmas?” Don’t just buy stuff. Stuff you have to store. Stuff she’ll have to dust. Stuff he’ll probably return anyway for store credit. Instead, give the gift of experiences, where nothing’s sold separately, no assembly is required, and it doesn’t matter whether batteries are included because you won’t need any. Give someone you... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Recap: With John Pizzarelli, the Grand Rapids Symphony’s ‘McCartney and More’ is much, much more

By Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk - John Pizzarelli does a wicked Paul McCartney impression from the mannerisms and cadence to the Liverpool accent. “If you’re going to do Paul McCartney, you’ve got to do Paul McCartney,” Pizzarelli explains. As good as it is, the singer and guitarist does an even better job playing McCartney’s music. The Grand Rapids Pops opened its 2018-19 Fox Motors Pops on Friday, Sept. 21, with “McCartney and More” ... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Saturday, September 22, 2018

Jazz guitarist John Pizzarelli brings music of Paul McCartney to Grand Rapids Symphony

Jazz guitarist and vocalist John Pizzarelli has played and recorded with such luminaries as Rosemary Clooney, Johnny Frigo and Buddy DeFranco. He was the opening act on Frank Sinatra’s last tour. But Pizzarelli, age 58, grew up listening to The Beatles, and eight years ago, he collaborated with Paul McCartney on his album Kisses on the Bottom , which was released in February 2012. “It was quite an experience listening to him talk about the Beatles and how they made... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Plenty of great music coming to Grand Rapids Symphony's stage in 2018-19

At the climax of the 2010 film “The King’s Speech,” King George VI overcomes the stutter he’s had since childhood to announce that Great Britain was at war with Nazi Germany. As Colin Firth, who portrays King George, addresses the British people throughout the world, the gravitas of the moment is supplied by music from Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 in the film that won the Oscar for Best Picture. The Grand Rapids Symphony performs Beethoven’s Symphony... Read More
Posted by Jeffrey Kaczmarczyk at Tuesday, September 4, 2018

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