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Tuesday, May 31, 2016
An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein at the Madison Theatre
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Oklahoma! star Joan Roberts, right), mentored many young aspiring performers, including Merrick’s Sarah Losner, who will sing in Roberts honor at the Madison Theatre next Saturday.
It’s an evening of memories, as the cast recreates the classic songs from the beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein catalog, in many cases performing songs that they themselves have sung in various iconic productions over the years.
“Marni Nixon appeared in the most popular musical of all time, “The Sound of Music,” Bider said, “and of course was the singing voice in the “King and I,” West Side Story,” and “My Fair Lady.” And she also succeeded Joan in the Roundabout 2001 revival of “Follies.” We are thrilled to have here with us.”
Nixon opens the concert, performing “It’s a Grand Night for Singing,” She also appears in “Do Re Mi,” and does a duet of “My Favorite Things,” with Sarah and Julia Losner, later in the program.
Lee Meriwether, who Binder describes as “another living legend,” played Anna in a production of “The King & I” in a revival of the show in California in the 1990s. Here she will recreate that performance, singing “I Whistle a Happy Tune” and “Hello, Young Lovers.”
Lee Roy Reams, a veteran Broadway star, will captivate the audience singing “Younger Than Springtime” and “Oklahoma!” Reams appeared in the original Broadway production of “42nd Street” and created the role of Lumiere in “Beauty and the Beast,” among his other credits.
Frank Basile, who was married to Celeste Holm, Roberts’ Oklahoma’ co-star, lends his operatic voice to “Soliloquy” and “Some Enchanted Evening.”
And there’s much more in this 90-minute show. “It’s really a concert version of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s greatest hits,” said Angelo Fraboni, Madison Theatre’s artistic director and the production’s executive producer. “It’s great to do a Rodgers and Hammerstein evening as a tribute to Joan, who did so much for Molloy, since she was a Rodgers and Hammerstein girl. We have four to five pieces from each musical, wonderful music performed by outstanding talent, backed up with a student chorus and the Children’s Orchestra Society.”


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