Far, Far Away
The force is strong with this one!
David Charles Abell, Music Director & Principal Conductor READ BIO
Born in North Carolina, David grew up in the Mt. Airy Neighborhood of Philadelphia. At the age of fourteen, he turned his attention to conducting and went on to study with Leonard Bernstein and Nadia Boulanger. He earned degrees from Yale University and the Juilliard School after intensive study of viola, piano, and composition. He has worked with such distinguished artists as Judi Dench, Emma Thompson, Idina Menzel, Heather Headley, Bryn Terfel, Matthew Morrison and Michael Feinstein. Previously, as Guest Conductor and Principal Guest Conductor of The Philly POPS, he conducted Cole Porter’s Broadway: Too Darn Hot, Lenny’s Revolution, Blockbuster Broadway, and A Philly POPS Christmas in 2013, 2014, 2015, and again for the record-setting run of A Philly POPS Christmas in 2019 and the streamed performance in 2020. David has appeared regularly on television, most notably conducting the 10th and 25th Anniversary concerts of Les Misérables. He has conducted five times at London’s BBC Proms, including a live telecast of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!. Recordings include the musicals Miss Saigon, Martin Guerre and Man of La Mancha, Something’s Gotta Give with baritone Simon Keenleyside, Forever with soprano Diana Damrau, and highlights from La Bohème and Madama Butterfly with the Royal Philharmonic.
In the UK, David recently conducted his own critical edition of Kiss Me, Kate for Opera North. He has conducted many of the premier British orchestras, including the London Symphony, City of Birmingham, Bournemouth, and Royal Philharmonic. His work with the BBC Symphony Orchestra includes a centenary concert honoring his mentor Leonard Bernstein in 2018. A much-respected artist in London’s West End, David conducted the Olivier Awards ceremony for four years and was Andrew Lloyd Webber’s personal choice to lead the world premiere of Love Never Dies at the Adelphi Theatre. David’s recent projects have included a series of Gershwin concerts at Kyiv National Theatre of Operetta in Ukraine, Carousel at the Vienna Volksoper and Sweeney Todd at the Zurich Opera House. David also conducted Barrie Kosky’s production of The Magic Flute at Opera Philadelphia, West Side Story at the Glimmerglass Festival, and Silent Night, Kevin Puts’ acclaimed opera about the World War I Christmas Truce, in Kansas City, Cincinnati and Detroit.
The force is strong with this one!
The Philly POPS sets course for a galaxy far, far away with the music that changed cinema forever!
From the goosebumps of the “Main Theme” of the very first blockbuster film, to the suspense of the “Duel of the Fates,” John Williams’ soaring scores are rich with unforgettable themes. Williams composed the scores for all nine Star Wars films, starting with A New Hope in 1977, and has won seven GRAMMY awards and 10 nominations for the saga.
Join the Rebellion and come in costume as your favorite character to hear the 65-piece Philly POPS orchestra performing the iconic soundtracks as they were recorded.
Main Title (IV. A New Hope) – By John Williams
Anakin’s Theme (I. The Phantom Menace) – By John Williams
Duel of the Fates (I. The Phantom Menace) – By John Williams, Arr. Robert W. Smith
Across the Stars ( II. Attack of the Clones) – By John Williams
Battle of the Heroes (III. Revenge of the Sith) – By John Williams, Arr. Jerry Brubaker
The Adventures of Han (IIIa. Solo: A Star Wars Story) – By John Williams
Jyn Erso & Hope Suite (IIIb. Rogue One) – By Michael Giacchino
Cantina Band (IV. A New Hope) – By John Williams
Princess Leia’s Theme (IV. A New Hope) – By John Williams
The Imperial March (V. The Empire Strikes Back) – By John Williams
Main Title (King’s Row) – By Erich Wolfgang Korngold
Parade of the Ewoks (VI. Return of the Jedi) – By John Williams
Luke and Leia (VI. Return of the Jedi) – By John Williams
Main Theme (The Mandalorian) – By Ludwig Goransson
Scherzo for X-Wings (VII. The Force Awakens) – By John Williams
Rey’s Theme (VII. The Force Awakens) – By John Williams
The Rebellion is Reborn (VIII. The Last Jedi) – By John Williams
The Speeder Chase (IX. The Rise of Skywalker) – By John Williams
The Rise of Skywalker (IX. The Rise of Skywalker) – By John Williams
Throne Room & End Title (IV. A New Hope) – By John Williams