Tickets & Events


Disney's Broadway Hits

Disney's Broadway Hits

Boston Pops

Symphony Hall - Boston, MA View Map

For 20 years, Disney has astonished millions worldwide with theatrical productions that both entertain and amaze. In an unforgettable night of music, the Boston Pops and Broadway stars Ashley Brown, Josh Strickland, Alton Fitzgerald White, and Merle Dandridge perform beloved songs from 9 Tony and Academy Award-winning scores by some of the greatest composers and lyricists in the world including Alan Menken (Beauty and the BeastThe Little MermaidAladdin), Phil Collins (Tarzan), Elton John and Tim Rice (AidaThe Lion King) and Richard & Robert Sherman / George Styles & Anthony Drewe (Mary Poppins).

Featured Performers

Keith Lockhart, conductor
Keith Lockhart, conductor View biography in full page >

On May 10, 1995, Keith Lockhart, the 20th Conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, opened his very first Boston Pops season, leading a concert featuring guests Sylvia McNair, Mandy Patinkin, and Doc Severinsen, and repertoire ranging from Wagner to “Charlie on the MTA.” He was only 35 years old—the same age as Arthur Fiedler was when he became Boston Pops Conductor in 1930—and was dubbed “The Kid” by longtime Pops Associate Conductor Harry Ellis Dickson. The press coverage from the time of Keith’s appointment to the position in February 1995 was extensive, commenting on not only his musical talent but also his good looks and enviable head of hair, as well as the challenge of following in the illustrious footsteps of John Williams and Arthur Fiedler. But this baby boomer, born in 1959, came to the position with musical chops, a remarkable work ethic, and a deep appreciation for both the institution of the Pops and its audience. His varied conducting experience encompassed both the symphonic and pops repertoire, as well as performances in concert halls and on recordings; he had most recently served as Associate Conductor of both the Cincinnati Symphony and Cincinnati Pops, and made his Boston Pops debut as a guest conductor in 1993, just two years before he was appointed Conductor.

Over the next 25 years, with seemingly endless energy, Keith Lockhart, who holds the Julian and Eunice Cohen Boston Pops Conductor chair, would lead the Boston Pops in more than 2,000 concerts, in every imaginable setting—from hospitals to the Super Bowl—and collaborate with nearly 300 guest artists, drawn from the worlds of classical and popular music, rock, jazz, sports, politics, Broadway, and Hollywood.

Although acclaimed around the world, the Boston Pops—sometimes called “America’s Orchestra”—remains a treasured local fixture, as beloved as the region’s sports teams and historic landmarks. Its reputation has been acknowledged in popular culture, recently in a memorable episode of the animated television series “The Simpsons.” The family decided to take a “hate-cation” to Boston—because of Homer’s resentment of the “Boston Americans” football team and its fans—and ultimately fell in love with the city that has “a Symphony AND a Pops.” Through the years, Keith Lockhart has embraced Boston and in return, Boston has embraced him.

Most of the concerts led by Keith Lockhart take place in Symphony Hall, itself a registered historic landmark, during the orchestra’s spring and holiday seasons. He has also led annual Boston Pops appearances at Tanglewood, Pops concerts at Carnegie Hall and Radio City Music Hall, 45 national tours to more than 150 cities in 38 states, and four international tours to Japan and Korea. He and the Pops have made 80 television shows, including 38 new programs for the PBS series Evening at Pops, and participated in such high-profile sporting events as Super Bowl XXXVI, the 2008 NBA finals, the 2013 Boston Red Sox Ring Ceremony, and the Red Sox Opening Day game at Fenway Park in 2009. The annual July 4 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular draws a live audience of over half a million to the Charles River Esplanade, and millions more view it on television or live webcast. During Keith’s tenure, the July 4 event was televised by a major national network for the first time. In 2017, with Eaton Vance as presenting sponsor and Bloomberg as the exclusive media partner, the Pops organization presented its first self-produced Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular, which was broadcast on Bloomberg Television and all its media outlets. Both companies are continuing their commitments to the event.

Lockhart-led albums on the RCA Victor/BMG Classics label include Runnin’ Wild: The Boston Pops Play Glenn Miller, American Visions, The Celtic Album (Grammy-nominated, the first Boston Pops recording to be so honored), Holiday Pops, A Splash of Pops, The Latin Album (Latin Grammy-nominated), Encore!, and My Favorite Things: A Richard Rodgers Celebration. Recent releases on the in-house label, Boston Pops Recordings, include The Red Sox Album, A Boston Pops Christmas—Live from Symphony Hall, and The Dream Lives On: A Portrait of the Kennedy Brothers, which was a Boston Pops commission premiered in 2010 during the orchestra’s 125th season. Released at the beginning of the 2017 Pops season, Lights, Camera...Music! Six Decades of John Williams features Keith Lockhart leading the Boston Pops in a collection of Williams compositions from the 1960s onward, including some rarities.

Keith’s personal affinity for American music has led him to program full-length Broadway musicals and invite stars of the musical theater world to perform with the Pops. He has worked closely with hundreds of talented young musicians, including Fellows of the Tanglewood Music Center, college students from the Boston Conservatory and Berklee College of Music, and area high school students. He introduced the PopSearch talent competition and the innovative JazzFest and EdgeFest series, featuring prominent jazz and indie artists performing with the Pops. Well aware of the influence of technology on our lives and the concert experience, he was the driving force behind “Pops on Demand,” allowing audience members to vote on their cell phones in such categories as “Favorite Disney Song” and “Favorite John Williams Theme” and see the results in real time. The Lockhart/Pops album Oscar & Tony was the basis of a Pops internet TV broadcast, the first such program offered by a symphony orchestra. In recent seasons, he and the Pops have presented a number of films in concert, both classic (The Wizard of Oz) and contemporary (Home Alone). He is dedicated to building and updating the Boston Pops library of music, which contains over 5,000 arrangements.

With a renewed commitment to bringing the Boston Pops into the Boston community and to important civic events, Keith Lockhart and the Pops have appeared at gubernatorial and mayoral inauguration ceremonies; the holiday tree lighting in Boston’s Public Garden; sporting events including Red Sox, Patriots, Bruins, and Celtics games, and the memorial service for the Boston Marathon bombing victims. He has led free concerts in such major public spaces as the Boston Common and Franklin Park, and each holiday season he brings musicians of the Pops to play for patients at Children’s Hospital and Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. He is a recipient of the 2017 Commonwealth Awards for Achievement, the state’s highest honor in the arts, humanities, and sciences presented by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

More recently Keith and the Pops initiated a conducting competition for students aged 18 to 30 during the 2018 season-long celebration of Leonard Bernstein’s centennial. As part of a 2019 Pops tour concert in Fort Lauderdale, Keith invited student survivors from the shooting at Margery Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland to perform a song, composed by two of them, honoring the resilience of their community. Back at Symphony Hall, both the spring and holiday Pops seasons in 2019 included a sensory-friendly concert designed for families with children or adults diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder or sensory sensitivities.

Keith recently completed a decade-long relationship with the BBC Concert Orchestra, first as principal conductor and then as the orchestra's chief guest conductor. During his tenure as principal conductor, he led the 2012 Diamond Jubilee Concert for Queen Elizabeth II. He continues to serve as artistic director of the Brevard Music Center Summer Institute and Festival in North Carolina. Prior to his BBC appointment, he spent eleven years as music director of the Utah Symphony, which he led at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City. He has appeared as a guest conductor with virtually every major symphonic ensemble in North America, as well as many prestigious orchestras in Asia and Europe. Before coming to Boston, he was the associate conductor of both the Cincinnati Symphony and Cincinnati Pops orchestras, as well as music director of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra. Born in Poughkeepsie, New York, Keith Lockhart began his musical studies with piano lessons at the age of seven. He holds degrees from Furman University and Carnegie Mellon University, and honorary doctorates from several American universities.

Having the gift of being able to communicate with people of all ages, Keith Lockhart readily conveys his passion for the music he loves, which covers a wide spectrum. His programming reflects this breadth of interest and he is completely at ease articulating his professional and personal perspectives. Above all, he believes in and appreciates the experience that only the Boston Pops can provide—an atmosphere of music-making that is both fun and entertaining. He has called the Pops “the great outreach arm of the classical music industry. There’s no orchestra like it in this country or in the world that plays such a wide variety of music at such a high level.”

For more on Keith Lockhart, visit keithlockhart.com or bostonpops.org.

 

Keith Lockhart, conductor Ashley Brown
Ashley Brown View biography in full page >

Ashley Brown originated the title role in Mary Poppins on Broadway for which she received Outer Critics, Drama League and Drama Desk nominations for Best Actress.  Ms. Brown also starred as Mary Poppins in the national tour of Mary Poppins where she garnered a Garland award for "Best Performance in a Musical". Ms. Brown's other Broadway credits include Belle in The Beauty and The Beast, and she has starred in the national tour of Disney's On The Record.  Ms. Brown most recently has been starring as Mother Abbess in multiple Tony award winner Director Jack O'Brien's new production of The Sound of Music.  Ms. Brown recently returned to critical acclaim starring in the Lyric Opera of Chicago's production of Oklahoma.   She previously played Magnolia opposite Nathan Gunn in Francesca Zembello's Showboat at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Ms. Brown has performed with virtually all of the top orchestras in North America including the Boston Pops, the New York Philharmonic, The Hollywood Bowl Orchestra at Disney Hall, The Pittsburgh Symphony, the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall (four times), Fort Worth Symphony, the Cincinnati Pops, Philadelphia Orchestra (two times), the Milwaukee Symphony, the Indianapolis Symphony (three times), Seattle Symphony, the Houston Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Jacksonville (two times) and the Philly Pops. She has also performed with the BBC orchestra opposite Josh Groban.  Ms. Brown made her solo concert debut at The Kennedy Center as part of Barbara Cook's Spotlight Series, and has appeared in New York City at prestigious venues including Feinstein's at the Regency and Birdland.  Other projects include star turns in Hello Dolly at The Goodspeed Opera House, The Sound of Music at the St. Louis MUNY which garnered her a Kevin Kline award, Limelight at the La Jolla Playhouse, and her own PBS special called "Ashley Brown: Call Me Irresponsible" which received a PBS Telly Award.  Other television credits include NBC's "The Sound of Music LIVE."  Ms. Brown is the voice of Disneyland celebrating its 60th anniversary singing the newly penned Richard Sherman song, "A Kiss Goodnight."  Ms. Brown's long-awaited album of Broadway and American Songbook standards is available on Ghostlight/Sony. Ashley is a graduate of the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.

www.ashleybrownonline.com

www.facebook.com/AshleyBrownonline

twitter: AshleyBrown9

Ashley Brown
Josh Strickland
Josh Strickland View biography in full page >

Josh Strickland is a native of Charleston, South Carolina. In 2006, Strickland created the leading role of Tarzan in Disney's Tarzan  on Broadway. In 2009, he made his starring Las Vegas debut in PEEPSHOW at Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort while concurrently co-starring in the hit E! reality show "Holly's World." Strickland debuted his first single "Report to the Floor," which skyrocketed to the top five on the iTunes Dance Charts the first week of its release, followed by "Last Dance." In 2013, Strickland joined the cast of Vegas! The Show  at the Planet Hollywood Casino & Resort in Las Vegas in a starring role. Strickland has also appeared internationally with the all-star cast of Disney's Broadway Hits, including the Royal Albert Hall in London, England. Strickland has also traveled the world appearing in Disney's D23 Expo, including Tokyo, Japan. He is currently reprising his role as Tarzan in Disney's Musical Tarzan  in Oberhausen, Germany at the Stage Metronom Theater.

 

Twitter & Instragram: @joshuajstrick

Josh Strickland Alton Fitzgerald White
Alton Fitzgerald White View biography in full page >

After completing a record-breaking 4,308 performances as King Mufasa in Disney’s The Lion King on Broadway, Alton has added Author and in-demand Keynote Speaker to his growing list of titles. His book, My Pride: Mastering The Challenge Of Daily Performance, an inspirational biography filled with secrets to fulfillment and joy in work and life was published by Disney Editions and has been nominated for several major national book awards. Other Broadway starring roles include Mister in The Color Purple, Coalhouse Walker Jr. in Ragtime, Ken in Smokey Joe’s Cafe, John in Miss Saigon and  The Hawker in The Who’s Tommy. He made his West End debut as Ken in Smokey Joe’s Cafe in London. Alton has performed concert dates all over the world, including music from his best-selling CD, Disney My Way!, full of re-imagined Disney on Broadway classics. Alton has also had Guest Star roles on the hit TV series “Law and Order,” “Bull,” “The Blacklist,” “The Good Fight,” “Code Black,” “FBI” “Elementary,” “Mindhunter” and “Madam Secretary”. He had featured roles in four films in 2019 including the highly anticipated The Goldfinch, as a social worker opposite Oscar Winner Nicole Kidman. He was also featured in The Pulitzer Prize winning and Emmy Award winning RENT LIVE which was performed on FOX television. Alton’s popular TEDx Talk-Redefining Service To Dream The Impossible Dream can be found on YouTube. 

Alton Fitzgerald White
Merle Dandridge
Merle Dandridge View biography in full page >

Having made an indelible mark on stage, television, and video games, Merle Dandridge continues to shine on the small screen, starring in Oprah Winfrey Network's hit series "Greenleaf" which is currently in production in its third season. She previously starred in FX's "Sons of Anarchy," CW's "Starcrossed," and NBC's "The Night Shift."

Born in Japan, raised in Nebraska, and schooled in Chicago at Roosevelt University, Dandridge began her acting career with leading roles on Broadway in Spamalot (Lady of the Lake), Rent  (Joanne), Aida  (Aida), Tarzan (Kala) and Jesus Christ Superstar  (Soul Girl, Disciple). Most recently, she was the first woman to ever play the role of Papa Ge, the sly demon of death, in the Broadway revival of Once On This Island, completely reinventing the character with her fearless portrayal. Dandridge has toured the U.S. and Europe six times and has been featured in several regional theatre productions (including multiple stints at The Geffen and Pasadena Playhouse). She has also performed at The Hollywood Bowl and at Royal Albert Hall in London.

Dandridge has voiced several videogame characters and worked alongside Neil Druckmann in "Uncharted 4: A Thief's End" and starred as Marlene in "The Last Of Us." She has also voiced various characters in "Dota 2," Alyx Vance in "Half-Life 2," and Katherine Collins in the Award-winning independent video game "Everybody's Gone To The Rapture" for which she won the 2016 BAFTA for "Best Performer."

In her Nebraska hometown, Merle has been inducted into the Hall of Fame where she spends time giving workshops, speeches, performances, and participating in projects to raise arts awareness for the school district she grew up in. In Los Angeles, where she currently resides, she serves on the Board of Directors of The Geffen Playhouse and lends her voice and support to Harvest Home LA which provides housing and holistic support to homeless pregnant women.

Merle Dandridge