It’s “Summertime” at the Talcott Mountain Music Festival; HSO to Pay Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong

Marva Hicks
Marva Hicks

SIMSBURY, July 16, 2014 – The Hartford Symphony Orchestra will close the 2014 Talcott Mountain Music Festival with Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong: A Musical Tribute on Friday, July 25, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center at Simsbury Meadows.  Led by Guest Conductor Benjamin Rous, this outdoor concert will feature vocalist Marva Hicks and vocalist and trumpet player Byron Stripling performing the beloved American jazz standards that were defined by Ella and Louis, including “S’Wonderful,” “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” “They Can’t Take That Away From Me,” “Love Is Here To Stay,” “What A Wonderful World,” “Summertime,” “Just One Of Those Things,” and more.

Marva Hicks is an accomplished and versatile performing artist. Her Broadway credits include Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music, Disney’s The Lion King, Caroline, or Change, and Motown The Musical and her TV and movie credits include One Life to Live, L.A. Law, Star Trek: Voyager, Mad About You, Asunder, and Virtuosity. Hicks has toured around the world performing alongside Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, and James Ingram.

With a contagious smile and captivating charm, trumpet virtuoso, Byron Stripling has ignited audiences internationally. As soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra, Stripling has performed frequently under the baton of Keith Lockhart, as well as being featured soloist on the PBS television special, “Evening at Pops,” with conductors John Williams and Mr. Lockhart. Since his Carnegie Hall debut with Skitch Henderson and the New York Pops, Stripling has been a featured soloist at the Hollywood Bowl and performs at jazz festivals throughout the world. He earned his stripes as lead trumpeter and soloist with the Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of Thad Jones and Frank Foster and has played and recorded extensively with the bands of Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, Dave Brubeck, Lionel Hampton, Clark Terry, Louis Bellson, and Buck Clayton in addition to The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, The Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, and The GRP All Star Big Band.

Byron Stripling
Byron Stripling

Admired for his dynamism on the podium, Benjamin Rous began his tenure as Associate Conductor of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra in 2010.  The 2013-2014 season marks debuts with the Santa Fe Symphony, the Hartford Symphony and the Buffalo Philharmonic.  In past seasons he has appeared in concert with, among others, the National Arts Center Orchestra (Ottawa, Ontario), Ensemble Orchestral de Paris (Vendome, France), the Illinois Symphony, the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, and on St. Louis’s Pulitzer Concerts with musicians of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. In the summers he serves as faculty conductor at Greenwood Music Camp in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts.

Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong: A Musical Tribute
with Marva Hicks, vocals; Byron Stripling, vocals and trumpet; Benjamin Rous, conductor
Friday, July 25, 2014 ? 7:30 p.m.
Performing Arts Center at Simsbury Meadows
Program: Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong’s most popular songs, including “Tiger Rag,” “How High The Moon,” “S’Wonderful,” “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” “They Can’t Take That Away From Me,” “Love Is Here To Stay,” “Don’t Mean A Thing,” “A Tisket A Tasket,” “What A Wonderful World,” “Summertime,” “My Man’s Gone Now,” “Oh Lawd I’m On My Way,” “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” “Just One Of Those Things”
Ticket Information: Tickets to the 2014 Talcott Mountain Music Festival range in price from $20-$45; and lawn tickets for kids 12 and under are $5. Discounts are available for tickets purchased in advance. For more ticketing information, please contact HSO ticket services at (860) 244-2999 or visit www.hartfordsymphony.org.
Additional Information: Gates open at 6:00 p.m. for all Talcott Mountain Music Festival concerts. The HSO Education tent is open to all ticket holders from 6:00p.m.-7:15p.m.; families can enjoy free activities such as music-themed games and crafts, the “Instrument Zoo,” and youth performances.  In the case of severe weather, this concert will be performed the following night (July 26) at the same time.

The 2014 Talcott Mountain Music Festival is sponsored by St. Francis Care and The Richard P. Garmany Fund at Hartford Foundation for Public Giving. Broadway Rocks! is sponsored by Hartford HealthCare. Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong: A Musical Tribute is sponsored by Classic Hotels of Connecticut. The 2014 Talcott Mountain Music Festival receives Festival Patron support from Falcetti Music, Paine’s Recycling and Rubbish Removal, Seabury, and UBS Realty Investors, LLC; Festival Benefactor support from Cigna, Ensign-Bickford Industries, Inc., Forethought Life Insurance Company, Simscroft-Echo Farms/Girard Brothers Corporation, The Hartford, Travelers, Viking Fuel Oil Company; and Festival Friend support from Big Y, CL&P, Dornenburg Kallenbach Advertising, Ethel Walker School, Federman Lally & Remis, LLC, Fitzgerald’s Foods, JP Morgan Chase, Metro Bis, Motley Rice, LLC, Murphy, Laudati, Kiel, Buttler & Rattigan, LLC, Robert Hensley & Associates, LLC, Robinson & Cole, Simsbury Bank, Spotwine, Tom & Suzy Reich. The Education Tent Sponsor is Renbrook School. The Fireworks Sponsor is The Master’s School. Generous support for the Hartford Symphony Orchestra is provided by the Greater Hartford Arts Council, the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, and with support from the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts which also receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

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