Press Release • July 27, 2018

Philadelphia, PA (July 27, 2018) – Tickets are now on sale for the first three Philly POPS shows of the 40thAnniversary 2018-19 concert season – Leslie Odom Jr.: 40th Anniversary CelebrationStorm Large: A Crazy Kind of Love and JAZZED! The Philly POPS BIG Band with Terrel Stafford.

“The 2018-2019 season marks our 40th Anniversary season and there is a lot to celebrate. We’re highlighting Philadelphia’s rich musical history in all of our programs.” said Frank Giordano, CEO and President of The Philly POPS. “The season starts with Hamilton’s Leslie Odom, Jr., a Grammy and Tony winner who grew up in this musically inspired city and attended two School District of Philadelphia schools.Storm Large will interpret the American Songbook for today’s audiences. Unlike Leslie, she will do it in a bold and sizzling style. The history of Jazz in Philadelphia is quite extensive — and so is the current acclaim accorded to Terell Stafford, who will lead JAZZED! alongside our BIG Band.”

Guests may also purchase Create Your Own mini-subscriptions to save up to 15% on any three Verizon Hall concerts, including the Storm Large and JAZZED! shows, plus Christmas, Heather Headley’s Broadway My Way, and spring shows (before they go on sale to the general public on September 10th): POPS Rocks: The 80’sUptown Nights with Byron StriplingCole Porter’s Broadway: Too Darn Hot and American Bandstand: A Philadelphia Story. Create Your Own subscribers enjoy advance-notice of special events, flexible ticket exchanges, ticket replacements, pre-paid parking, dining discounts, and more.
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Leslie Odom, Jr.: Celebrating the POPS 40th Anniversary 
September 28-30, 2018 
Michael Krajewski, conductor featuring Leslie Odom, Jr., vocalist  

Leslie Odom, Jr. rocketed to stardom with his Grammy and Tony-award winning portrayal of Aaron Burr in Hamilton. Since then, he’s released two albums. His elegant interpretation of the classics of the American Songbook make him the perfect performer to kick off the POPS 40th Anniversary Celebration.  He’s said that he wants to make the kind of music Nat King Cole would make today — and he’ll do that with us. The Philly POPS backs him up in a show that spans from “Autumn Leaves” to “Unforgettable” and “Mona Lisa” right on up to tunes from that Broadway show that made him famous. He pays homage to his Broadway debut in Rent with a POPS orchestra-centric, all-strings version of “Without You”, also featuring his guitarist, Steven Walker. 

The concert weekend will include performances by Masterman and CAPA, the two School District of Philadelphia Schools which Odom attended.  Both are part of the POPS in Schools program and student performers will be invited to attend one of his concerts.

Storm Large: A Crazy Kind of Love 
November 9-11, 2018 
Michael Krajewski, conductor featuring Storm Large, vocalist  

A mesmerizing six-foot blonde, Storm Large is a musician, actor, playwright, author, and most famous as an unforgettable interpreter of American popular music. She sold out the Kennedy Center with her debut as guest vocalist for the electric band Pink Martini and The New York Times called her “sensational” when she performed at Carnegie Hall in 2013. “I‘ve always liked the whole idea of the Rat Pack and Frank Sinatra, all those kinds of very cool atmospherics,” she has said. Storm’s Crazy Kind of Love set features tunes from “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” through “Somebody to Love” and “Forever Young”. Her sizzling interpretations of POPS classics form the perfect counterpoint to Leslie Odom, Jr.’s more mellow revue of American popular music. 

JAZZED! The Philly POPS BIG Band with Terrell Stafford 
January 18-20, 2019 
Terell Stafford, trumpet featuring Matt Gallagher, leader, The Philly POPS BIG Band  

Philadelphia has a storied history with America’s musical art form: Jazz. This program visits the past — the sounds of North, South, and West Philly, and the music of John Coltrane, Stanley Clarke, and especially Philly-born Billie Holiday. This new January series will celebrate a particular kind of Philly sound — the jazz of the ’40s and ’50s with Temple University’s internationally-acclaimed jazz trumpeter Terell Stafford. Terell conducts the All-City Jazz Orchestra honor band as part the School District’s All-City Jazz Festival that’s presented by the POPS, leads the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia, and serves as Temple’s Director of Jazz Studies and Chair of Instrumental Studies. 

Stafford is the Director of the All-City Jazz Orchestra, the honor band for All-City Jazz.  The Philly POPS is in its fifth year partnering with the School District and is pleased to present the All-City Jazz Festival at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts on April 16, 2019 during International Jazz Month.


About The Philly POPS   
The Philly POPS, the largest standalone pops orchestra in the United States, delights audiences with the inspired performance of American popular music. The POPS celebrates this distinctive musical heritage through an expanding repertoire of innovative concert performances and a robust set of educational and engagement initiatives. 

Now celebrating its 40th Anniversary Season, the POPS, the official POPS orchestra of Pennsylvania and the City of Philadelphia’s partner in civic celebration, serves a consistently growing audience of over 200,000 annually. Music Director Michael Krajewski and the 65-piece Philly POPS orchestra keep listeners tapping their toes to an impressive repertoire of songs from American traditional music up through to today’s chart-toppers. The Philly POPS BIG Band, an 18-20 piece ensemble performing a rock and rhythm and blues repertoire, premiered in 2017 to enthusiastic response at the July 4 Welcome America Concert on the Parkway.  

Outside the concert hall, free Salute Series performances – including Memorial Salute, July 3 POPS on Independence, July 4 POPS on the Parkway and the I’ll Be Home for Christmas: A Salute to the Military and First Responders concert – celebrate the American tradition of service around important national holidays.POPS in Schools enhances music education for Philadelphia School District students; POPS Outside brings POPS music to local communities. The Philly POPS performs as a founding resident company of The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, and at venues throughout the mid-Atlantic region.