Broadway stars. Triple threats. Real married couples. The HSO will present Love on Broadway on Saturday, May 19 at 7:30 pm in Mortensen Hall at The Bushnell in Hartford as part of its 2017-2018 POPS! Series. Visit hartfordsymphony.org for tickets and information.
Love on Broadway will star Donald E. Webber, Jr. (Hamilton) and Rebecca Covington Webber (Beautiful: The Carole King Musical), Stephen Trafton (Les Misérables) and Juliette Trafton (The Fantasticks), and Sal Viviano (The Full Monty) and Liz Larsen (Beautiful: The Carole King Musical). The concert will be conducted by HSO Assistant Conductor Adam Boyles.
Come celebrate as these pairs – performing live with the HSO – sing and talk about the ups, downs, and all arounds of love, life, and marriage on the Great White Way, with songs from West Side Story, Once, Phantom of the Opera, Wicked and more.
Donald E. Webber Jr. is currently on Broadway in Hamilton: An American Musical. He was also seen on Broadway in the original casts of Motown: The Musical and Holler If Ya Hear Me. Off-Broadway, he was seen in Whorl Inside a Loop. Donald’s National Tours include: Jersey Boys and Motown: The Musical. Donald has a passion for music, acting, and dancing that started while growing up in Englewood, CA. As the proud son of Donald Sr. and Karita Webber, both musicians, he grew up in church where he learned to sing at a young age and has continued with that passion throughout his career. He attended the University of Southern California and holds a BFA in Acting. After college, he spent years teaching theatre in high schools in the Los Angeles area – it was there that he cemented his love for live theatre and soon decided to move to New York and immediately made his Broadway debut in Motown: The Musical! His life motto is “success without significance means nothing.” It is in that vein, that one of his favorite charities to donate his time to is the Felix Organization!
Rebecca Covington Webber was most recently seen in the Broadway production of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical where she played the role of Janelle Woods. She was also seen on Broadway in Motown the Musical where she portrayed Gwen Gordy, Cindy Birdsong of The Supremes, Gladys Horton of The Marvelettes and many others! Rebecca was also a part of the International and National tours of: Beautiful: the Carole King Musical, Mamma Mia, Ain’t Misbehavin, Motown the Musical, and Thoroughly Modern Millie. As a proud member of Actor’s Equity Association, she has also played some of her favorite roles in regional theaters across the U.S. including Nehebka in AIDA, Ronette in Little Shop of Horrors, Brenda in Smokey Joe’s Café and Charlayne in Ain’t Misbehavin. Originally from Lexington, Kentucky, Rebecca holds a Bachelor of Music from Belmont University in Tennessee and she now lives with her French Bulldog, Ella Frenchgerald, and her husband, Donald Webber, Jr.!
Stephen Trafton was a swing for 12 roles in the Broadway original revival cast of Les Misérables. He understudied and performed the role of Raoul in The National Tour of The Phantom of the Opera. He has performed at many regional theatres across the country playing leading roles such as Curly in Oklahoma!, Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Conrad Birdie in Bye Birdie, Dumaine in Love’s Labour’s Lost, Paris in Romeo & Juliet, and Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast, amongst others. Currently, he serves as the West Side Youth Director at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in NYC. He also created and presently tours the country with a non-profit organization called Living Letters, which are one-person performances that enable people to experience Scripture as it was originally intended. He received a Bachelor of Music in Music Theatre at Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, OH. Stephen lives in Astoria, NY with his wife, Juliette, and their two children, Tadd and Audra.
Juliette Trafton recently starred as Luisa in the longest running musical in the world, The Fantasticks, directed by Tom Jones in New York City. Before that, she performed the role of Christine Daae in the National Tour of The Phantom of the Opera and, regionally, in leading and featured roles in Guys and Dolls (Sarah), Into the Woods, (Rapunzel u/s), Jane Eyre (Jane), Peter Pan (Wendy u/s), and Kiss Me, Kate. As a commercial artist, you can follow her work on national television. A lover of improv, Juliette continues to hone her skills with the Upright Citizens Brigade, but she loves nothing more than performing with her husband, Stephen. Their finest productions yet are their two little ones, Tadd and Audra.
Sal Viviano has sung over 400 Pops Concerts with over 200 Symphony Orchestras around the world. A Detroit native, Viviano began his career as a teenager opening for comedy greats of in showrooms throughout the Midwest. On Broadway, Sal made his debut in The Three Musketeers, and has since co-starred on Broadway in Romance / Romance, City of Angels, Falsettos, The Life and The Fully Monty. Off-Broadway, Viviano co-starred in Closer than Ever (Broadway World Award – Best Actor; Off-Broadway Alliance Award), Golf, The Musical (Backstage Award – Best Actor), and Catch Me if I Fall, to name a few. On tour, he’s starred in countless productions, which include Chicago and Sunday in the Park with George (Helen Hayes Award – Best Actor nom). In film, Viviano starred in the cult classics Black Roses, The Jitters, and recorded songs for Legally Blonde 2, Spike of Bensonhurst, and Life with Mikey. Viviano also holds numerous television credits and has recorded songs with legends such as Cy Coleman, Burton Lane, and Jule Styne. Sal has sung our National Anthem for over 30 seasons for NY’s Mets.
Liz Larsen originated and has played Genie Klein, Carole King’s mother, for over 4 years in Beautiful, The Carole King Musical, on Broadway. This New Hope, PA, native was previously seen on Broadway costarring in shows such as Hairspray, The Rocky Horror Show, and Damn Yankees, receiving TONY, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Awards nominations as well as the Los Angeles Dramalogue Award for Best Featured Actress. On Tour, Larsen co-starred in Blues in the Night, Annie and Evita. Off- Broadway, Liz has been seen in countless shows, such as A New Brain, New Yorkers and Loman Family Picnic, and Personals. Liz received a Helen Hayes Award for Lead Actress in Sunday in the Park with George and a nomination for Baby. Larsen played featured roles countless films and television shows, including Keeping the Faith, Miracle in Spanish Harlem, Law and Order SVU, and Law and Order. Liz has been a soloist with symphonic pops orchestras all over the world including the New York Pops. Larsen is most proud of her sons, Alessandro Gian and Joseph Dante, with dreamboat husband Sal Viviano.