Pasadena, CA – Principal Pops Conductor Michael Feinstein and the Pasadena POPS continue the 2018 Sierra Summer Concert Series with a momentous tribute to Leonard Bernstein on Saturday, August 18 at 7:30pm. The POPS presents Bernstein’s New York as part of the Leonard Bernstein at 100 centennial being celebrated around the globe, but Feinstein has something more in store for this special performance. Having been lucky enough to know and spend time with Bernstein, Michael will recount first-hand stories from Candide to On the Town and West Side Story
and will give an intimate look inside the legend’s friendships with Copland, Sinatra and more. Feinstein will present Bernstein as only he can, examining how the melting pot of the Big Apple influenced his life and music to reveal what made Bernstein “Bernstein”.
The POPS will commemorate Bernstein’s 100th with an evening full of wide-ranging music. The setlist will cover songs from his enduring Broadway classics, with “Somewhere” and On the Town’s “New York, New York,” along with the best from his contemporaries, including his close friend Aaron Copland’s “Hoe Down” and Sinatra’s “New York, New York.” Feinstein says of the evening’s program, “It was his full embrace of the world of music that made him unique in what he did. It seemed necessary to all of us to create something that would reflect that nature. The concert is not exclusively Bernstein; it also is music that influenced him, music written by his contemporaries, and music he influenced.”
A slew of talent will join the POPS orchestra for the special tribute. The guest soloists include Julian Ovenden, who will reprise many of the songs he’s performed from Bernstein’s cannon throughout the years. Ovenden has an exceptional voice and is particularly adept at the music of Leonard Bernstein, though most know him for his many screen credits, notably Downton Abbey, Person of Interest, and Smash. La Cañada native Finn Sagal brings youth and charisma to the stage, with his larger-than-life voice. This rising star is one to watch – he is the winner of the 2017 Songbook Academy® Award, and currently serves as the Great American Songbook Youth Ambassador.
All concerts are held at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Grounds open for picnicking and dining at 5:30pm and performances begin at 7:30pm. Don’t miss the best outdoor dinner party in town with spacious circular table seating with fine linens, or lawn seating for those who want to bring a blanket – each option carries on the tradition of picnic-dining with your family and friends with Michael Feinstein and Pasadena’s premier orchestra! Among many venue amenities, concert goers can enjoy pre-ordered gourmet dining packages for on-site pickup just steps from their table from Julienne, Marston’s and Claud & Co. The venue also hosts mouth-watering food trucks and the convenience of two full beverage centers serving fine wines, beer, coffee and soft drinks.
Audiences get the ultimate outdoor concert experience with large LED video screens to see the artists and orchestra up close, superior sound and the high-quality production value that is a signature of the Pasadena POPS. For those who want to make a night of it, exclusive hotel packages are available for POPS patrons at Pasadena’s landmark Hotel Constance.
The Arboretum is located at 301 North Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA. Subscribers may pre-purchase parking on-site at the Arboretum, and all concertgoers enjoy free parking at the adjacent Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with complimentary non-stop shuttle service to the Arboretum’s main entrance.
Single tickets start at $25 and are available by calling the box office at (626)-793-7172, online at PasadenaSymphony-Pops.org or at the Arboretum on the day of the concert.
- What: The Pasadena POPS presents Bernstein’s New York
Michael Feinstein, Principal Pops Conductor, Tom & Erika Girardi Chair
Julian Ovenden & Finn Sagal, soloists
- When: August 18, 2018 at 7:30pm
- Where: The LA County Arboretum | 301 N Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007
- Cost: Tickets start at $25.00
- Dining: Gates open at 5:30pm for picnicking. Guests are welcome to bring their own food and drink or visit one of the many onsite food vendors.
- Parking: Subscribers have the opportunity to purchase onsite Arboretum parking. Single ticket holders may park for free at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with free non-stop shuttles to the main gate.
Principal Pops Conductor
Tom and Erika Girardi Chair
Michael Feinstein has built a dazzling career over the last three decades bringing the music of the Great American songbook to the world. From recordings that have earned him five Grammy Award nominations to his Emmy nominated PBS-TV specials, his acclaimed NPR series and concerts spanning the globe – in addition to his appearances at iconic venues such as The White House, Buckingham Palace, Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall and Sydney Opera House – his work as an educator and archivist define Feinstein as one of the most important musical forces of our time.
In 2007, he founded the Great American Songbook Foundation, dedicated to celebrating the art form and preserving it through educational programs, Master Classes, and the annual High School Songbook Academy. This summer intensive open to students from across the country has produced graduates who have gone on to record acclaimed albums and appear on television programs such as NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.” Michael serves on the Library of Congress’ National Recording Preservation Board, an organization dedicated to ensuring the survival, conservation and increased public availability of America’s sound recording heritage.
The most recent album from his multi-platinum recording career is A Michael Feinstein Christmas from Concord Records. The CD features Grammy Award -winning jazz pianist Alan Broadbent (Paul McCartney, Diana Krall, Natalie Cole). Feinstein earned his fifth Grammy Award nomination in 2009 for The Sinatra Project, his CD celebrating the music of “Ol’ Blue Eyes.” The Sinatra Project, Volume II: The Good Life was released in 2011. He released the CDs The Power Of Two – collaborating with “Glee” and “30 Rock” star Cheyenne Jackson – and Cheek To Cheek, recorded with Broadway legend Barbara Cook. For Feinstein’s CD We Dreamed These Days, he co-wrote the title song with Dr. Maya Angelou.
His Emmy Award-nominated TV special Michael Feinstein – The Sinatra Legacy, which was taped live at the Palladium in Carmel, IN, aired across the country in 2011. The PBS series “Michael Feinstein’s American Songbook,” the recipient of the ASCAP Deems-Taylor Television Broadcast Award, was broadcast for three seasons and is available on DVD. His most recent primetime PBS-TV Special, “New Year’s Eve at The Rainbow Room” – written and directed by “Desperate Housewives” creator Marc Cherry – aired in 2014. For his nationally syndicated public radio program “Song Travels,” Michael interviews and performs alongside of music luminaries such as Bette Midler, Neil Sedaka, Liza Minnelli, Rickie Lee Jones, David Hyde Pierce and more.
Feinstein was named Principal Pops Conductor for the Pasadena Symphony in 2012 and made his conducting debut in June 2013 to celebrated critical acclaim. Under Feinstein’s leadership, the Pasadena Pops has quickly become a premier orchestral presenter of the Great American Songbook with definitive performances of rare orchestrations and classic arrangements. He launched an additional Pops series at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in Palm Beach, Florida in 2014.
Michael’s book The Gershwins and Me – the Los Angeles Times best-seller from Simon & Schuster – features a new CD of Gershwin standards performed with Cyrus Chestnut at the piano.
Feinstein serves as Artistic Director of the Palladium Center for the Performing Arts, a $170 million, three-theatre venue in Carmel, Indiana, which opened in January 2011. The theater is home to diverse live programming and a museum for his rare memorabilia and manuscripts. Since 1999, he has served as Artistic Director for Carnegie Hall’s “Standard Time with Michael Feinstein” in conjunction with ASCAP. In 2010 he became the director of the Jazz and Popular Song Series at New York’s Jazz at Lincoln Center.
Feinstein’s at the Nikko, Michael’s nightclub at San Francisco’s Nikko Hotel, has presented the top talents of pop and jazz since 2013. He debuted at Feinstein’s/54 Below, his new club in New York, late in 2015. His first venue in New York, Feinstein’s at the Regency, featured major entertainers such as Rosemary Clooney, Glen Campbell, Barbara Cook, Diahann Carroll, Jane Krakowski, Lea Michele, Cyndi Lauper, Jason Mraz and Alan Cumming from 1999 to 2012.
He has designed a new piano for Steinway called “The First Ladies,” inspired by the White House piano and signed by several former First Ladies. It was first played to commemorate the Ronald Regan centennial on February 6, 2011.
In 2013 Michael released Change Of Heart: The Songs of Andre Previn in collaboration with four time Oscar and eleven time Grammy Award-winning composer-conductor-pianist Andre Previn. The album celebrates Previn’s pop songs and motion picture classics. Earlier album highlights include Hopeless Romantics, a songbook of classics by Michael’s late friend Harry Warren, recording with legendary jazz pianist George Shearing. His album with songwriting icon Jimmy Webb, Only One Life – The Songs of Jimmy Webb, was named one of “10 Best CDs of the Year” by USA Today.
Feinstein received his fourth Grammy nomination for Michael Feinstein with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, his first recording with a symphony orchestra. The year before, Rhino/Elektra Music released The Michael Feinstein Anthology, a two-disc compilation spanning 1987 to 1996 and featuring old favorites and previously-unreleased tracks.
Michael was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, where he started playing piano by ear as a 5-year-old. After graduating from high school, he moved to Los Angeles when he was 20. The widow of legendary concert pianist-actor Oscar Levant introduced him to Ira Gershwin in July 1977. Feinstein became Gershwin’s assistant for six years, which earned him access to numerous unpublished Gershwin songs, many of which he has since performed and recorded.
Gershwin’s influence provided a solid base upon which Feinstein evolved into a captivating performer, composer and arranger of his own original music. He also has become an unparalleled interpreter of music legends such as Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, Johnny Mercer, Duke Ellington and Harry Warren. Feinstein has received three honorary doctorates.
Through his live performances, recordings, film and television appearances, and his songwriting (in collaboration with Alan and Marilyn Bergman, Lindy Robbins, Bob Merrill and Marshall Barer), Feinstein is an all-star force in American music.
For more information, please visit www.MichaelFeinstein.com.
Julian Ovenden has built a reputation over the last fifteen years as one of the most versatile performers of his generation, in constant demand across the globe on stage, screen, concert hall and recording studio. Julian’s artistic training began at an early age as a chorister in the world famous choir of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. He subsequently won music scholarships to both Eton College and then to New College, Oxford University before completing his training on a major Arts Council Bursary at The Webber-Douglas Academy of Performing Arts.
His acting career began in a production of King Lear for the Royal Shakespeare Company directed by the visionary Yukio Ninagawa. He was then cast by Michael Grandage in two Olivier Award winning hit shows at the Donmar Warehouse: Stephen Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along and Grand Hotel.
He starred in Adrian Noble’s A Woman Of No Importance at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and Richard Jones’ Annie Get Your Gun opposite Jane Horrocks at The Young Vic as well as originating the role of Armand in Michel Legrand’s Marguerite in the West End opposite Ruthie Henshall. He starred opposite Nathan Lane in a production of Simon Gray’s Butley on Broadway and created the title role in Maury Yeston’s Death Takes A Holiday for The Roundabout Company in New York.
Recent stage work includes a hit run at The Donmar and West End transfer of My Night With Reg, starring in Harvey Weinstein’s first foray into stage musicals with Finding Neverland and playing Georges Seurat in the first French production of Sunday in The Park With George, at the Chatelet in Paris. In 2017 Julian collaborated with the acclaimed director Lyndsey Turner on The Treatment at The Almeida. As well as his stage work, Julian is well known to audiences on both sides of the Atlantic for his wide body of work in TV, most notably in the worldwide phenomenon Downton Abbey. He played Andrew Foyle in the hugely popular wartime series Foyle’s War. He appeared in Jonathan Nolan’s smash hit Person of Interest for 3 years. He has starred in many other TV shows including Netflix’s The Crown, Steven Spielberg’s Smash, The Forsyte Saga, The Assets, The Royal, Any Human Heart, Poirot, Charmed, Related, Cashmere Mafia, A Christmas Carol and Family Guy. In 2015 he starred as Captain Von Trapp in a live to air movie of The Sound of Music, the first foray into live musicals for ITV. Recently Julian starred as Willam De Nogaret in the Jeremy Renner produced hit Knightfall for the History Channel/ HBO. He returns to Prague this year to start work on the second season.
In films, Julian starred opposite Emma Watson in the thriller Colonia, with Richard E Grant in First Night, with Toni Servillo and Connie Nielsen in The Confessions, Head Full of Honey with Nick Nolte and Matt Dillon and is about to start shooting a comedy Surviving Christmas with Joely Richardson and Game of Thrones’ Gemma Whelan.
As a vocalist, Julian has appeared with many of the world’s leading orchestras including The New York Philharmonic, The Royal Philharmonic, The Royal Concertgebouw, The LPO, The New York Pops, The Gothenburg Symphony, The Australian Symphony and enjoys a special relationship with the John Wilson Orchestra. He has headlined at many of the world’s leading music venues including Carnegie Hall, The Alice Tully Hall, The Appel Hall, Lincoln Centre, The Royal Albert Hall, The Royal Festival Hall, Sydney Opera House, The Royal Opera House, The Wigmore Hall, The Chatelet, Birmingham Symphony, The Bridgewater Hall, The National Concert Hall in Dublin etc. In 2013, Julian recorded a debut album for Decca records entitled If You Stay and has since recorded Rogers and Hammerstein at the Movies with John Wilson for Warner Classics and Christmas at Downton Abbey for Warner Music that went double platinum earlier in 2016. In late 2015, he signed a multiple record deal with East West/Warners and his latest album Be My Love was released in April 2016. Julian is proud to have performed at many Royal command performances, in particular for the Queen’s 90th Birthday party in Windsor Castle.
Finn Sagal was the winner of the 2017 Songbook Academy® and served this past year as the Songbook Youth Ambassador. He is a recent graduate of La Cañada High School where he performed with the award-winning LCHS Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. Jeff Brookey, as well as in various musicals, including “Into the
Woods”, “The Sound of Music”, “Guys and Dolls”, and most recently performed Javert in “Les Miserables”. Finn also is an accomplished alto saxophone player and played principal alto saxophone and soloist in the Colburn School Wind Ensemble, and lead alto in his high school jazz band.
During the past year, Finn has had wonderful opportunities to perform and represent the Songbook Foundation across the country. He made his official debut as Songbook Youth Ambassador at the Great American Songbook Hall of Fame Induction Gala honoring Ella Fitzgerald, Mitzi Gaynor, and Oscar-winning lyricist, Ray Gilbert. He performed The National Anthem at a NFL COLTS game in Indianapolis, he performed with Michael Feinstein at his clubs in San Francisco and NYC, and also at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas with Liza Minelli. He was most excited to perform this past Spring at Jazz at Lincoln Center in NYC. Finn would like to thank Michael Feinstein and the Great American Songbook Foundation for the amazing experience!
Finn is very much looking forward to attending UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music in the Fall, and majoring in Vocal Performance/Opera with Juliana Gondek.
The Pasadena Symphony Association
Recent Acclaim for the Pasadena Symphony and POPS
“The Pasadena Symphony signals a new direction…teeming with vitality…dripping with opulent, sexy emotion.” Los Angeles Times.
“…full of pulsating energy from first note to last… the strings were lushly resonant, the wind principals were at the top of their games, and the brass rang out with gleaming vigor.” –Pasadena Star News.
Formed in 1928, the Pasadena Symphony and POPS is an ensemble of Hollywood’s most talented, sought after musicians. With extensive credits in the film, television, recording and orchestral industry, the artists of Pasadena Symphony and POPS are the most heard in the world.
The Pasadena Symphony and POPS performs in two of the most extraordinary venues in the United States: Ambassador Auditorium, known as the Carnegie Hall of the West, and the luxuriant Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden. Internationally recognized, Grammy-nominated conductor, David Lockington, serves as the Pasadena Symphony Association’s Music Director, with performance-practice specialist Nicholas McGegan serving as Principal Guest Conductor. The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein, is the Principal Pops Conductor, who succeeded Marvin Hamlisch in the newly created Marvin Hamlisch Chair.
A hallmark of its robust education programs, the Pasadena Symphony Association has served the youth of the region for over five decades through the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) comprised of five performing ensembles, with over 250 gifted 4th-12th grade students from more than 50 schools all over the Southern California region. The PYSO Symphony often performs on the popular television show GLEE.
The PSA provides people from all walks of life with powerful access points to the world of symphonic music.