Press Release • February 18, 2020

Philly’s biggest rock band turns it on again in POPS Rocks Phil Collins, March 6–8, 2020.

Under the direction of guest conductor Stuart Chafetz, the full Philly POPS orchestra pays tribute to Phil Collins, an artist who, with his work in Genesis and his solo career, helped define the sounds of the ‘80s and ‘90s. 

Guest artist Aaron Finley of Rock of Ages and Kinky Boots returns after his unforgettable performances in last season’s POPS Rocks the ‘80s. Vocalist Brook Wood makes her Philly POPS debut in this concert series. Brook is currently performing with renowned Broadway singers in the show 50 Years of Rock and Roll around the country, and recently toured with Post Modern Jukebox On Deck. Principal percussionist for the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra and Temple University graduate Brian Kushmaul joins the POPS to bring Phil Collins’ iconic drum sound.

Phil Collins started teaching himself drums at age 5 by playing along to the TV and Beatles records. In 1970, he joined the band Genesis, becoming the lead singer in 1975—following the departure of Peter Gabriel. While with Genesis, throughout the ‘80s and early ‘90s, the group released huge hits like “That’s All,” “Invisible Touch,” “Turn It On Again,” “Follow You Follow Me,” and “Abacab.” In 1996, he left the band to focus on his solo work, which inspired hits like “In the Air Tonight,” “I Don’t Care Anymore,” “Don’t Lose My Number,” and “Two Hearts.” His fame grew worldwide, with him playing both the London and Philly Live Aid performances in the same day. His music lit up MTV with vibrant music videos and made appearances on the soundtracks of unforgettable TV hits like Miami Vice.

“I am so excited to rock out with the Philly Pops and share the music of the multi-talented musician Phil Collins and Genesis!” said guest conductor Stuart Chafetz. “His music defined a generation with exciting grooves, passionate singing, and a timeless catalog of outstanding songs.”

POPS Rocks Phil Collins runs March 6–8 at The Kimmel Center for The Performing Arts.

Tickets are available at www.phillypops.org/philcollins

About Aaron Finley
Born and raised in Bozeman, Montana, Aaron C. Finley’s career has spanned from coast to coast as a professional actor and singer. Educated at Pacific Lutheran University in Seattle, he quickly became at top-tier talent in the Pacific Northwest, appearing in productions of Jesus Christ Superstar (Jesus/Judas), Rent (Roger), Fiddler on the Roof (Perchik), Hairspray (Link Larkin), It Shoulda Been You (Greg Madison). Among his other regional roles, Aaron originated the role of Billy in the new musical Diner, based on the Barry Levinson film, with music and lyrics by Sheryl Crow and direction by Kathleen Marshall.

Aaron made his Broadway debut in 2013, starring as Drew Boley in Rock of Ages. Next, he took over the role of Brian Howard in It Shoulda Been You, directed by David Hyde Pierce. He most recently was seen in the Broadway production of Kinky Boots as leading man, Charlie Price. Among his other work in New York, he participated in a lab production of George Takei’s Broadway musical, Allegiance as well as other workshops and readings of new works.

Follow him on Twitter/Instagram @aaroncfinley and aaroncfinley.com

About Brook Wood
Brook Wood is a singer based in New York City. She is currently touring with some of Broadway’s best singers in Neil Berg’s 50 Years of Rock and Roll all over the country. She originated the role of JP Morgan in the Adirondack Theatre Festival’s production of Nikola Tesla Drops The Beat. She was also seen in the PATH Fund’s Rockers on Broadway at Le Poisson Rouge benefiting Tom Kitt. She most recently toured with “Post Modern Jukebox On Deck” this past summer. Brook is a native of Indianapolis, IN and a proud graduate of Indiana University.

Instagram: @browood

About Brian Kushmaul
Brian Kushmaul is the Principal Percussionist for the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra. He regularly performs with the orchestras of Buffalo, Columbus, Saint Louis, and Pittsburgh. In addition, he teaches drumming for the Chautauqua Institution “I Can Drum” School Residency throughout Chautauqua county. As a drumset artist he has performed with Dave Grusin, Eddie Daniels, Len Boogsie Sharpe, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Phoenix Symphony, and recorded with the Central Standard Time Jazz Quartet.

About Stuart Chafetz
Stuart Chafetz is the Principal Pops Conductor of the Columbus Symphony and the newly appointed Principal Pops Conductor of the Chautauqua and Marin Symphonies. Chafetz, a conductor celebrated for his dynamic and engaging podium presence, is increasingly in demand with orchestras across the continent and this season Chafetz will be on the podium in Detroit, Houston, Milwaukee, Naples, Philly Pops, Cincinnati Pops, Pittsburgh, San Diego, and Winnipeg. He enjoys a special relationship with The Phoenix Symphony where he leads multiple programs annually.

He’s had the privilege to work with renowned artists including Chris Botti, 2 Cellos, Hanson, Rick Springfield, Michael Bolton, Kool & The Gang, Jefferson Starship, America, Little River Band, Brian McKnight, Roberta Flack, George Benson, Richard Chamberlain, The Chieftains, Jennifer Holliday, John Denver, Marvin Hamlisch, Thomas Hampson, Wynonna Judd, Jim Nabors, Randy Newman, Jon Kimura Parker and Bernadette Peters. 

He previously held posts as resident conductor of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and associate conductor of the Louisville Orchestra. As principal timpanist of the Honolulu Symphony for twenty years, Chafetz would also conduct the annual Nutcracker performances with Ballet Hawaii and principals from the American Ballet Theatre. It was during that time that Chafetz led numerous concerts with the Maui Symphony and Pops. He’s led numerous Spring Ballet productions at the world-renowned Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University.

In the summers, Chafetz spends his time at the Chautauqua Institution, where he conducts the annual Fourth of July and Opera Pops concerts with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra in addition to his role as that orchestra’s timpanist.

When not on the podium, Chafetz makes his home near San Francisco, CA, with his wife Ann Krinitsky. Chafetz holds a bachelor’s degree in music performance from the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati and a master’s from the Eastman School of Music.