TONY AWARD-WINNER BRIAN STOKES MITCHELL TO JOIN PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED
HAMILTON STAR LESLIE ODOM, JR., POP SENSATION ANDY GRAMMER, AND AMERICAN FOLK-ROCK SINGER-SONGWRITER MELISSA ETHERIDGE AS HEADLINERS FOR THE 2017 BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR UNDER THE DIRECTION OF KEITH LOCKHART
ADDITIONAL PROGRAMMING HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE A WORLD PREMIERE OF A
NEW WORK BY FAMED COMPOSER ALAN MENKEN AND TONY AWARD-WINNING LYRICIST JACK FELDMAN; MUSIC BY THE ONE-AND-ONLY
JOHN WILLIAMS FROM THE RECENTLY RELEASED BOSTON POPS ALBUM,
“LIGHTS, CAMERA…MUSIC! SIX DECADES OF JOHN WILLIAMS”; AND SPECIAL APPEARANCES BY THE U.S. ARMY FIELD BAND AND SOLDIERS’ CHORUS AND
MIDDLESEX COUNTY VOLUNTEERS FIFES AND DRUMS
NEW INFORMATION: A NEW BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR APP FOR IOS AND ANDROID DEVICES PROVIDES UP-TO-THE MINUTE DETAILED EVENT AND SCHEDULE INFORMATION AND WAYS TO SHARE EXPERIENCES ON SOCIAL MEDIA, AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD AT Boston Pops iOS App; Boston Pops Android App; NEW APP TO FEATURE A JULY 4 TRIVIA QUIZ AND MAP WITH TAGS SHOWING POINTS OF INTEREST ON THE ESPLANADE INCLUDING INFORMATION ABOUT ENTRY GATES, WATER STATIONS, SAFETY, AND FOOD AND BEVERAGE OPTIONS
BLOOMBERG’S ALIX STEEL AND CAROL MASSAR TO CO-HOST PROGRAM, WITH ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY MATT MILLER
BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR TO RECEIVE MULTI-PLATFORM DISTRIBUTION TO APPEAL TO WIDEST SPECTRUM OF VIEWERS AND LISTENERS: OPTIONS INCLUDE BLOOMBERG TV AND RADIO BROADCASTS (SEE TUNE IN INFO BELOW); LIVE VIDEO CONCERT STREAM AT BLOOMBERG.COM AND ON THE BLOOMBERG MOBILE AND OTT PLATFORMS; AND ADDITIONAL LISTENING OPTIONS THROUGH BLOOMBERG HD RADIO STATIONS, IHEARTRADIO, AND THE BLOOMBERG RADIO APP ON APPLE AND ANDROID DEVICES
EATON VANCE IS PRESENTING SPONSOR FOR BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR
BLOOMBERG IS MAJOR SPONSOR AND MEDIA PARTNER
FOR PHOTOS OF KEITH LOCKHART, GUEST ARTISTS, AND SPONSORS, CLICK HERE: https://app.box.com/s/mygwuythkyjz0097rgc040n6az90r0iz
The Boston Pops is pleased to announce that Tony Award-winner Brian Stokes Mitchell will join previously announced guest artists Leslie Odom, Jr., Andy Grammer, and Melissa Etheridge as headliners for the 2017 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular, under the direction of Keith Lockhart. In addition, Alan Menken, the iconic American musical theater and film score composer best known for his scores for films by the Walt Disney Animation Studios, and Tony Award-winning lyricist Jack Feldman are composing a new work, “The Sum of Us,” for soloist, chorus, and orchestra, to receive its world premiere at Boston’s famed Independence Day celebration. This year’s Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular will also showcase the U.S. Army Field Band and Soldiers’ Chorus, along with the Middlesex County Volunteers Fifes & Drums, adding their own special patriotic flair to the day’s festivities. The program will also spotlight musical selections from the Boston Pops’s recently released album, Lights, Camera…Music! Six Decades of John Williams. Alix Steel, co-anchor of “Bloomberg Daybreak Americas” on Bloomberg Television, and Carol Massar, co-anchor of “Bloomberg Markets” on Bloomberg Radio, will co-host the 2017 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular, with additional reporting by Matt Miller, co-anchor of “Bloomberg Markets: European Open” on Bloomberg Television.
The traditional fighter jet Military Flyover in coordination with the “Star-Spangled Banner,” will open the evening’s Boston Pops program, and a spectacular 20-minute fireworks show designed by Grucci Fireworks, and accompanied by the music of the Boston Pops and other popular music of the past and present, will bring the celebration to an end.
On July 4, gates open at 9 a.m. and the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular concert begins at 8 p.m., followed by the event’s fireworks display at approximately 10:30 p.m. On July 3, the gates open at 5 p.m. and the performance begins at 8 p.m.; there will be no fireworks on July 3. For information about credentials and press access to the July 3 and 4 performances, as well as info about access to the fireworks barges on July 1 and 2, contact Steve MacDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org or 617-817-2111. Attendees of the event can ride the MBTA for free after 9:30 p.m. on July 4.
TUNE-IN INFORMATION BLOOMBERG’S BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR VIDEO AND RADIO BROADCASTS
The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular will receive a multi-platform distribution to appeal to the widest spectrum of viewers, from the loyal traditional television watcher and radio listener to the adventurous viewer, both here in Boston, throughout the country, and around the world, providing access to a wide variety of viewing and listening options, including online video streaming, HD radio, and mobile phone and tablet viewing apps.
The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular will be broadcast on Bloomberg Television (see Tune In information below); radio listeners in the greater Boston area can hear the concert through Bloomberg’s flagship station in Boston on 1200 AM and on SiriusXM satellite subscription radio on Channel 119.
The multi-platform distribution also features live concert video streams on Bloomberg.com and on the Bloomberg mobile and OTT platforms. Radio listeners across the country can also hear the concert through their Bloomberg HD radio station, or listen to it online at subscription-based iheartradio, 94.5 FM-HD2. For mobile listeners, the program can also be heard on the Bloomberg Radio app on either Apple or Android devices. Visit bostonpopsjuly4th.org for further details about the wide variety of options for viewing or listening to the show.
Where to Tune in for Bloomberg’s Television Broadcast in the Greater Boston Area
Cable customers in the Greater Boston area can view the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular on DISH: Channel 203; Verizon: Channel 104; and DirectTV: Channel 353. For Comcast subscribers within the greater Boston area, Bloomberg TV can be found on channels 45, 757, or 844, depending on the location in the market. Viewers beyond the greater Boston area should check their local cable listings for information on where to tune in to see Bloomberg TV’s Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular in their local areas. For a TV Tune-In Chart on where to view the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular on Bloomberg Television in the Greater Boston area visit bostonpopsjuly4th.org.
DETAILS OF A NEW JULY 4 APP
A new Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular App for iOS and Android devices launched on June 23, providing up-to-the-minute detailed event, safety and security, and schedule information, as well as ways to share experiences on social media. It can be downloaded here: Boston Pops iOS App; Boston Pops Android App.
The new Boston Pops App will also feature a map with tags showing points of interest on the Esplanade, including information about entry gates, water stations, and food and beverage options. An interactive Trivia Quiz and a commemorative camera filter for photos that offer users custom event photo frames to enhance your photos are also among the highlights of the new app.
PRODUCTION TEAM FOR THE 2017 BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR
The live broadcast will be produced by Michael Mathis, a multiple Emmy Award-winning producer and writer with more than 25 years of experience creating, developing and producing telecasts and special events. Producer of the broadcast for many years, Mr. Mathis has recently produced such video projects as Christmas in Rockefeller Center and The Nobel Peace Prize Concert. Joining the production team for the first time in 2017, Sandra Restrepo Considine will take on the role of director of the telecast. Among her many prestigious accomplishments, Restrepo Considine directed the first live televised musical performance of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Broadway sensation “Hamilton” during last year’s Grammy Awards and MTV’s weekly, live music series “Wonderland”; she also served as show director for more than 250 episodes of ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular was created by David G. Mugar.
The 2017 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular production team also includes BSO Chief Operating and Communications Officer and Event Executive Producer Kim Noltemy; Boston Pops Director of Artistic Planning and Event Executive Producer Dennis Alves, Broadcast and Event Executive Producer Pamela Picard, and Event Executive Producer and Operations Director Richard MacDonald.
THE BOSTON POPS AND THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS’ DEPARTMENT OF CONSERVATION AND RECREATION
The Boston Pops thanks the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ Department of Conservation and Recreation, Governor Charlie Baker, Lieutenant Governor Karen Polito, and Department of Conservation and Recreation Commissioner Leo Roy for their continued support of the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular at the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation’s (DCR) Hatch Memorial Shell located on the Charles River Esplanade.
Comprehensive security restrictions as determined by local, state, and federal authorities are in place to ensure that all concert attendees and the neighboring communities and residents have a safe and memorable experience. It is strongly advised that those heading to the Esplanade during the holiday weekend visit http://bostonpopsjuly4th.org for a complete listing of up-to-date security information.
Public access to the Hatch Shell/Esplanade area for concert-goers begins at 5 p.m. on July 3 and 9 a.m. on July 4. Those hoping to sit on the lawn must pass through a security checkpoint where all bags and coolers will be examined by security personnel. During the screening process, metal cutlery, alcoholic beverages, and glass containers will not be allowed and will be confiscated. After gaining access to the Oval, attendees will be given a wristband so that they can gain re-entry should they need to leave during the course of the day (different colored wristbands will be given on July 3 and July 4). Each year more than 1,000 water-craft attend the event, and important boating security restrictions are also posted on http://bostonpopsjuly4th.org.
For further information about security issues, please contact Massachusetts State Police Spokesperson David Procopio at email@example.com.; 508-820-2622.
BRIEF BACKGOUND ON THE BOSTON POPS FIREWORKS SPECTACULAR
One of the country’s premier Independence Day celebrations—which annually draws a crowd of more than 500,000 people to DCR’s Hatch Memorial Shell located on the Charles River Esplanade—carries on in the tradition of founders Arthur Fiedler (Boston Pops Conductor, 1930-1979), who initiated the free Esplanade Concerts in 1929, and David Mugar, who revitalized the tradition with fireworks and cannons in 1974, and a flyover added in 1995. Over the years, this free concert and fireworks extravaganza has attracted not only the people of greater Boston, but also millions of visitors to our great city. Now under the auspices of the Boston Pops, longtime Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular Executive Producers Pamela Picard and Richard MacDonald continue to manage the planning and operations of the event. The Boston Pops is honored that Mr. Mugar has now taken on an advisory role. Following the protocol of all recent Fourth-of-July celebrations, the Boston Pops is working closely with local and state officials on all aspects inherent to the success of the event. For a brief history of the Boston Pops July 4 celebration, click here.
The first male pop star in a decade since John Mayer to reach the Top 10 at Adult Pop Radio on his first two singles, Andy Grammer has taken the music world by storm with a succession of anthemic pop hits. His debut album featured the platinum singles “Keep Your Head Up” and “Fine By Me.” Andy’s second album, Magazines or Novels, featured the triple-platinum infectious smash hit “Honey, I’m Good,” which was one of the best-selling songs of 2015, and the certified gold anthem “Good to be Alive (Hallelujah).” His current single “Fresh Eyes” is Top 10 at Adult Pop Radio, is certified gold, and has become a streaming phenomenon with over 150 million streams. Grammer has made over 30 national television appearances and has shared the stage with such artists as Taylor Swift, Shawn Mendes, Florence + the Machine, Rachel Platten, and Train. He is currently working on his new album, which will debut this year.
Melissa Etheridge stormed onto the American rock scene in 1988 with the release of her critically acclaimed self-titled debut album, which led to an appearance on the 1989 Grammy Awards show. For several years, her popularity grew around such memorable originals as “Bring Me Some Water,” “No Souvenirs,” and “Ain’t It Heavy,” for which she won a Grammy in 1992. Etheridge hit her commercial and artistic stride with her fourth album, Yes I Am (1993). The collection featured the massive hits, “I’m the Only One” and “Come to My Window,” a searing song of longing that brought Etheridge her second Grammy Award for Best Female Rock Performance. In 1995, Etheridge issued her highest charting album, Your Little Secret, which was distinguished by the hit single, “I Want to Come Over.” Her astounding success that year led to Etheridge receiving the Songwriter of the Year honor at the ASCAP Pop Awards in 1996.
Known for her confessional lyrics and raspy, smoky vocals, Etheridge has remained one of America’s favorite female singer-songwriters for more than two decades. In February 2007, she celebrated a career milestone with a victory in the “Best Song” category at the Academy Awards for “I Need to Wake Up,” written for the Al Gore documentary on global warming, An Inconvenient Truth. As a performer and songwriter, Etheridge has shown herself to be an artist who has never allowed “inconvenient truths” to keep her down. Earlier in her recording career, Etheridge acknowledged her sexual orientation when it was considered less than prudent to do so. In October 2004, Etheridge was diagnosed with breast cancer, a health battle that, with her typical tenacity, she won. Despite losing her hair from chemotherapy, Etheridge appeared on the 2005 Grammy telecast to sing “Piece of My Heart” in tribute to Janis Joplin. By doing so she gave hope to many women afflicted with the disease.
Melissa Etheridge recently released Memphis Rock & Soul, her first album since 2014’s critically lauded This Is M.E. Recorded at Royal Studios in Memphis, the album has received stellar reviews. The 12-track recording features original material, as well as interpretations of classic songs from the legendary Stax catalog, celebrating its artists and legacy and spotlighting the vital role Stax Records played in the Civil Rights Movement.
LESLIE ODOM, JR.
Multifaceted performer Leslie Odom, Jr., has most recently been seen in the blockbuster Broadway musical Hamilton, for which he won the Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Musical for the role of Aaron Burr. He is also a Grammy Award-winner as a principal soloist on Hamilton’s Original Broadway Cast Recording, which won the 2015 award for Best Musical Theater Album. Mr. Odom originated the role of Aaron Burr in a sold-out run at The Public Theater in 2015, earning a Drama Desk Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical and a Lucille Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical.
Leslie Odom, Jr., made his Broadway debut at the age of 17 in Rent, before heading to Carnegie Mellon University’s prestigious School of Drama, where he graduated with honors. He is the recipient of a 2002 Princess Grace Award for Acting, which is dedicated to identifying emerging talent in theater, dance, and film. Additional theater credits include Leap of Faith on Broadway, for which he won the 2012 Astaire Award for Outstanding Male Dancer on Broadway and was nominated for a Drama League Award; the 2014 musical Venice, which also played at The Public Theater; and the Encores! Off-Center production of Tick, Tick… Boom!, marking his first time working with Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda.
On the small screen, Mr. Odom is best-known for his portrayal of Sam Strickland in the NBC musical series Smash, and his recurring role as Reverend Curtis Scott on Law & Order: SVU. He’s also appeared in episodes of Gotham, Person of Interest, Grey’s Anatomy, House of Lies, Vanished, and CSI: Miami. On the big screen he starred in the 2012 film Red Tails opposite Terrence Howard, Cuba Gooding, Jr., and David Oyelowo. As a recording artist, his self-titled debut album was part-funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign which raised $40,971. The album was released in 2014 by Borderlight Entertainment, Inc. Leslie Odom, Jr., was raised in Philadelphia, and currently resides in New York City.
BRIAN STOKES MITCHELL
Brian Stokes Mitchell received Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards for his star turn in Kiss Me, Kate. He also gave Tony-nominated performances in Man of La Mancha, August Wilson’s King Hedley II, and Ragtime. Other notable Broadway shows include Kiss of the Spider Woman, Jelly’s Last Jam,and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. In April 2016 he made a long-awaited return to Broadway starring once again with Audra McDonald in Shuffle Along, a new musical written and directed by George C. Wolfe with choreography by Savion Glover.
An extremely versatile and in-demand singer, Stokes has performed at venues spanning jazz, opera, pops, country, and musical theater worlds. He has worked with John Williams, Marvin Hamlisch, Keith Lockhart, Michael Tilson Thomas, Leonard Slatkin, The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Big Band, The Mormon Tabernacle choir, and the Muppets. Stokes has made multiple appearances at Carnegie Hall, and has been invited twice to perform at the White House and has performed for Presidents Clinton and Obama.
Brian Stokes Mitchell began piano studies at age six, and his musical curiosity led to an interest in orchestration, arranging, and film scoring which he first started studying on his own in his late teens. He later studied film scoring, orchestration, and conducting through UCLA and privately, and scored and conducted a number of Trapper John, MD episodes, a series on which he was also a regular cast member. His musical talent has extended to the present day as producer, arranger, and orchestrator on his own albums including his latest recording, Simply Broadway.
In addition to a seven-year stint on Trapper John, MD, Stokes’ extensive screen credits include memorable appearances on everything from PBS’s Great Performances to Frasier, Glee, Jumping the Broom and recent recurring roles on Madam Secretary, Mr. Robot,and the upcoming Hulu series, The Path. As a voice-over artist he has played dozens of characters on animated TV episodes. NPR aired his narration of Aaron Copland’s Lincoln Portrait with the U.S. Marine band.
Eaton Vance, a leading global asset manager based in Boston, is the Presenting Sponsor for the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular for an initial three years starting in 2017. Bloomberg, the global business and financial information and news leader, has made an initial three-year commitment to be a major sponsor and media partner beginning with the 2017 event.
About Eaton Vance
Eaton Vance is a Boston-based, leading global asset manager whose history dates back to 1924. With offices in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia, Eaton Vance and its affiliates Parametric Portfolio Associates, Atlanta Capital Management, Calvert Research and Management, and Hexavest offer individuals and institutions a broad array of investment strategies and wealth management solutions. The Company’s long record of providing exemplary service, timely innovation, and attractive returns through a variety of market conditions has made Eaton Vance the investment manager of choice for many of today’s most discerning investors. For more information, visit eatonvance.com.
Bloomberg, the global business and financial information and news leader, gives influential decision- makers a critical edge by connecting them to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas. The company’s strength – delivering data, news and analytics through innovative technology, quickly and accurately – is at the core of the Bloomberg Professional service. Bloomberg’s enterprise solutions build on the company’s core strength: leveraging technology to allow customers to access, integrate, distribute and manage data and information across organizations more efficiently and effectively. For more information, visit www.bloomberg.com or request a demo.
# # #
Bernadette Horgan, Director of Public Relations (firstname.lastname@example.org; 617-638-9285); Taryn Lott, Assistant Director of Public Relations (email@example.com; 617-638-9283)
For information about credentials and press access to the July 3 and 4 performances, as well as access to fireworks barges on July 1 and 2, contact Steve MacDonald (firstname.lastname@example.org; 617-817-2111).