Women Rock at the Grand Rapids Symphony’s D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops, July 27-28

Media Contact
Emma DeWitt
Public Relations Intern
616.454.9451 ext. 139

GRAND RAPIDS, MI., July 12, 2017 – Beginning in the late 1960s, the arrival of women as singers and recording artists began to change the course of rock and roll music. The musical influence of artists such as Janis Joplin, Tina Turner, Carole King and Aretha Franklin, later joined by Pat Benatar, Joan Jett and Heart, launched a movement that still is felt today.

The songs originally written or performed by legendary women of rock are coming to West Michigan for the third week of the Grand Rapids Symphony’s  D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops.

Women Rock featuring songs made famous by 10 women will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday on July 27-28 at Cannonsburg Ski Area, 6800 Cannonsburg Rd NE. Guest conductor Robert Thompson leads the Grand Rapids Pops in concerts underwritten by Bank of America and Miller Johnson as Benefactor Sponsors. Grand Rapids Symphony is only the second orchestra in the United States to present the brand new show created by Grammy Award-winning arranger Jeff Tyzik.

Single tickets for all concerts in the D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops are on sale. Call the Grand Rapids Symphony at (616) 454-9451 ext. 4 during business hours or (616) 885-1241 evenings or go online to PicnicPops.org

Women Rock pays homage to a generation of powerful, female songwriters, such as Holly Knight, a 2013 inductee into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame. Knight wrote Love is a Battlefield, recorded by Pat Benatar, and The Best, recorded by Tina Turner. Both songs are featured on Women Rock.

Three of Broadway’s brightest, young female stars perform songs such as I Feel the Earth Move by Carole King, Hit Me with Your Best Shot by Pat Benatar, and You Make Me Feel like a Natural Woman by Aretha Franklin.

Carole King once said, “Not only do you want to leave the audience wanting more, you want to leave yourself wanting more.” These three performers will leave you wanting more at the end of the night.

Several songs in this show are by Carole King, the most successful female composer and singer-songwriter in the late 20th century, who has written or co-written more than 100 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 for artists including The Shirelles, Bobby Vee, Herman’s Hermits, the Righteous Brothers and more. Her singing career came later with her hit album Tapestry topping the U.S. charts for 15 weeks in 1971.

Tina Turner began her career in 1960 as a member of the Ike & Tina Turner Revue, scoring hits with songs including River Deep – Mountain High, A Fool in Love and Proud Mary. Her 1984 recording, What's Love Got to Do With It, became Turner's biggest hit and won three Grammy Awards including Record of the Year. Proud Mary and What’s Love Got to Do With It both are in Women Rock.

Four-time Grammy Award winner Pat Benatar created a name for herself with songs including Hit Me With Your Best Shot and Love is a Battlefield, both in Women Rock. Benatar's career includes 10 platinum albums and eight Number 1 singles.

The show begins with Piece Of My Heart by Janis Joplin, a singer described as earthy, husky and explosive. She released three albums in her short career, the most popular being Pearl. The album did not reach popularity until three months after she died suddenly at age 27. Joplin was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995 and received a Lifetime Grammy Achievement award in 2005.

Influenced by hard rock and heavy metal, the band Heart rose to fame in the 1970s, led by sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson. The group ranks 57th on the list of “100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock” and has sold over 35 million records worldwide. Heart’s song These Dreams is featured on Women Rock.

Aretha Franklin, dubbed the “Queen of Soul,” the most charted female artist in the history of recorded music, has won 18 Grammys and sold over 75 million records worldwide, earning a position at No. 9 on the list of “100 Greatest Artists of All Time” and No. 1 on the “100 Greatest Singers of All Time.” Franklin is best known for her songs I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You), Respect, and Baby I Love You. Her song Freeway of Love is heard on Women Rock.

American R&B artist and pop singer Martha Reeves rose to fame as leader of the Motown girl group, Martha Reeves and the Vandellas. Growing up in Detroit, she was most closely associated with gospel music. With the Vandellas, Martha Reeves had over a dozen hits with songs including Heat Wave and Jimmy Mack. Their biggest hit, Dancing in the Street, is featured on Women Rock.

Joan Jett, the “Queen of Rock ’n’ Roll” and the “Grandmother of Punk,” entered the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015. With Joan Jett & The Blackhearts she recorded I Love Rock and Roll, which will be sung by the entire cast of Women Rock.

Women Rock  stars Cassidy Catanzaro, Katrina Dideriksen, and Shayna Steele.

Cassidy Catanzaro, the lead singer and songwriter of the all-female rock band Antigone Rising, has sold nearly 2 million albums and toured the U.S. following a record deal with both Starbuck’s Hear and Atlantic Records. She released her third solo album, “What is REAL,” in April 2016 and toured with legendary acts such as The Rolling Stones and Aerosmith. Cassidy has songwriting credits with Demi Lovato, with world-renowned producer Max Martin, with Rob Thomas of Matchbox 20, and with the Mount Holly Band.

Katrina Dideriksen, an alumna of New York University, has established her career in Broadway productions such as Tracy Turnblad in the Luxor production of Hairspray. Other major roles include Mimi in Rent and Rizzo in Grease. In New York-based workshops and concerts, Dideriksen’s roles have included Denise in FOUND! and Cheryl in Sleeping Beauty Wakes. As a recording artist, her voice can be heard on albums including Things To Ruin: The Songs of Joe Iconis, Rock & Roll Jamboree, and Kerrigan & Lowdermilk LIVE.

Shayna Steele, a vocal force to be reckoned with, has established herself in a musical career, appearing on Broadway in Rent, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Hairspray. She has been featured at multiple festivals with Grammy-winner Snarky Puppy in 2014 and is a vocalist with the Grammy-nominated Broadway Inspirational Voices. She has worked with artists such as David Cook, John Legend, Queen Latifah, Dolly Parton, Rihanna and Kelly Clarkson.

Next week, join the Grand Rapids Symphony for the audience favorite Classical Fireworks show on Thursday, Aug. 3 with Music Director Marcelo Lehninger making his conducting debut at the D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops.

Capping off the D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops is the marvelous mariachi sound of Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán on Saturday, August 5. Both special-event shows begin at 8 p.m.

About Cannonsburg Ski Area

Gates at Cannonsburg Ski Area open at 5:45 p.m. each night for picnicking and pre-concert entertainment, including free, kid-friendly activities such as face painting, crafts, and a musical instrument petting zoo.

Pack your own picnic baskets and coolers or purchase food from the grill at the Cannonsburg concession stand. Alcoholic beverages are permitted on the grounds, and parking is free for concertgoers.


Single tickets for lawn seats in advance to Women Rock are $19 for adults, $16 for college students and seniors, or $5 for ages 2-18. Single tickets for general admission chair seating are $30. Single tickets for an individual, reserved table seats are $51 or $408 for an entire table for eight.

MySymphony360 members can attend for $15. Active duty, reserve and National Guard members of the U.S. Military may purchase up to two tickets for $15 each. Children younger than age 2 are admitted for free.

All single tickets for all concerts are $5 more on the day of the show.

Group discounts are available for groups of 10 or more people by calling (616) 454-9451 ext. 192.

Tickets can be purchased through the GRS box office by calling (616) 454-9451 ext. 4 weekdays or (616) 885-1241 evenings; or in person at 300 Ottawa Ave. NW, Suite 100; or online at GRSymphony.org.

Tickets also may be purchased through Ticketmaster at (800) 982-2787, or at Ticketmaster outlets at select D&W Fresh Markets, Family Fare stores and Walmart. Tickets purchased at these locations will include a Ticketmaster service fee.

About the Grand Rapids Symphony

Organized in 1930, the Grand Rapids Symphony is nationally recognized for the quality of its concerts and educational programs. Led by Music Director Marcelo Lehninger, Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt and Associate Conductor John Varineau, nine concert series are presented, featuring a wide range of music and performance styles. More than 400 performances are given each year, touching the lives of some 200,000, nearly half of whom are students, senior citizens and people with disabilities all reached through extensive education and community service programs. Affiliated organizations include the Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus; Grand Rapids Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra; and Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses. GRS provides the orchestra for performances by Opera Grand Rapids and the Grand Rapids Ballet and sponsors the biennial Grand Rapids Bach Festival, which was held in March 2017 and returns in 2019.

To learn more about the Grand Rapids Symphony, please visit the website or

| Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | Flickr |

This activity is supported in part by an award from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.