L.C. Symphony Plays Favorites from “Golden Age” of American Music for Mother’s Day Pops Concert

This year’s Mother’s Day Pops Concert is not to be missed! Conductor-music director-arranger John Parkinson will lead the Lake County Symphony in an unforgettable program consisting of some of the best of American music from the “Great American Songbook” on May 12 at the Soper Reese Theatre in Lakeport. This timeless collection of melodies and jazz standards were recorded by top vocalists like Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, and Doris Day during what has been called the “Golden Age” of American music. Many of these songs were written specifically for stage and screen productions by some of our most celebrated composers, including George and Ira Gershwin, Cole Porter, Hoagy Carmichael and Stephen Sondheim.

Selections on the Symphony’s playlist include “I Get a Kick Out of You,” (Cole Porter) “Misty,” (Erroll Garner) and “Sophisticated Lady,” by Duke Ellington. “My Funny Valentine,” by Richard Rodgers & Lorenz Hart was recorded over 1,000 times by such artists as Frank Sinatra, Rod Stewart, and Sting, and was featured in TV shows (“The Simpsons”) and in several Hollywood movies, including Michelle Pfeiffer’s version in “The Fabulous Baker Boys.”

“Night and Day,” by Cole Porter was written for the 1932 stage musical “Gay Divorce” and introduced by Fred Astaire during its run at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre in New York. Soon after the opening of the show, it was recorded by Bing Crosby, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, and many other popular artists. Astaire sang it again in “The Gay Divorcee, the 1934 movie made of the Broadway musical. It is one of Porter’s most popular contributions to the Great American Songbook and has remained a popular standard. In more recent years, it’s been recorded by Charlie Parker, Willie Nelson, Rod Stewart, Stan Getz, Ringo Starr, and the Temptations. Rock groups U2 and Chicago also recorded it, and Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett sang a version of this song for their 2021 collaborative album, “Love for Sale.”

The Lake County Symphony always gives an impeccable performance, and Cynthia Rose, who sang at the LCSA Christmas Concert (along with Anthony Neves), is again a featured vocalist, entertaining the audience with her skillful rendition of these classic, enduring melodies. Rose grew up in Lake County and was mentored by her father, pianist Tom Ganoung, who has played throughout Lake County for decades and in special regular events with other professional pianists. Educator/musician Nick Biondo also had a significant impact on Rose. He taught at her high school and, like Rose, is a member of the popular band, The Funky Dozen.

The lake County Community & Youth Orchestra will again be the opening act for the Lake County Symphony with Dr. Camm Linden conducting. They will be performing a custom-arranged montage of six soundtracks from the video game series Pokémon Gen V Black 2 & White 2. If you are not sure what all this means, just ask your kids – or grandkids – they will know!

Tickets for the regular 2 p.m. Mother’s Day Pops Concert are $25 for general seating or $30 for premium seating and may be purchased on the Soper Reese website: https://www.soperreesetheatre.com. Tickets are also available at the Soper Reese box office at 275 S. Main Street on the day of the concert. Attendees are asked to arrive 30 minutes prior to the show when buying tickets at the door, especially those attending the 11 a.m. dress rehearsal concert. This bargain rehearsal concert is free for anyone under the age of 18 and is $5 for everyone else.

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