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Neighbors of Kane County

Lyric Opera and broadway star Jenn Gambatese sings the music of Rodgers & Hammerstein with the ESO Feb 12-14

Feb 09, 2016 03:03PM ● By Neighbors Magazines

Jenn Gambatese, who starred as Maria in the Chicago Lyric Opera’s 2014 production of The Sound of Music, and appeared the following season as Carrie Pipperidge in their production of Carousel, joins with ESO resident conductor Stephen Squires and the Elgin Symphony Orchestra to present the music of Rodgers and Hammerstein February 12-14. 

The performance includes songs from Carousel, The King and I, Oklahoma, The Sound of Music and South Pacific, and also features baritone Sean MacLaughlin and host Oscar Andy Hammerstein III. A Rodgers & Hammerstein Celebration will be presented at the Schaumburg Prairie Center for the Arts on Friday, February 12 at 7:30 pm and at Elgin’s Hemmens Cultural Center on Saturday, February 13 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, February 14 at 2:30 pm. Saturday concertgoers are invited to Mingle with the Musicians after the show at the Elgin Public House, 219 East Chicago Street.  Concert tickets start at only $30 and can be purchased through the ESO Box Office (847-888-4000) or by visiting www.ElginSymphony.Org.

Gambatese has also appeared on Broadway as Penny Pingleton in Hairspray, Jane in Tarzan and as Natalie in All Shook Up.  She also played Glinda in the first North American tour of Wicked. Other Broadway credits include Is He Dead?, A Year with Frog and Toad, and Footloose.  Off-Broadway and regional credits include The School for Lies, We Have Always Lived in the Castle and Annie Get Your Gun

Originally from outside Cleveland, Ohio, Gambatese studied at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where she double majored in drama and sociology. She graduated with a BFA magna cum laude.

Gambatese will be joined by Sean MacLaughlin, who has appeared on Broadway as Raoul in The Phantom of the Opera, as Lestat in The Woman in White, and in Bombay Dreams. MacLaughlin’s Off Broadway credits include Transport Group productions of The Audience and Requiem for William, and South Pacific at Carnegie Hall. His film/TV credits include Something the Lord Made, Trading Mom, and WTTW’s Great Performances: South Pacific.

Host Oscar Andy Hammerstein III is a painter, writer, lecturer, and family historian and has devoted much of his life to studying and preserving his family’s heritage and contribution to American culture. He lectures frequently at universities, institutes, and theatrical and civic organizations on his family’s pivotal role in shaping the development of musical theater and popular entertainment in this country from the 1860’s to the present. In 1997, he co-wrote/curated the exhibit, “Direct from Broadway, A 200-Year History of New York City Theatre,” for the Paine-Weber Gallery space in New York City.

In addition to being the Resident Conductor of the Elgin Symphony Orchestra, Stephen Squires is the Music Director of the Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra, Music Director of the Millar Brass, and Music Director of the Illinois Brass Band.  He has guest conducted the Chicago Symphony, the Syracuse Symphony, the Green Bay Symphony, the Columbus (OH) Symphony and the Chicago Composers Orchestra. In addition, he is an accomplished recital accompanist, freelance trumpeter, and frequent guest conductor at educational festivals throughout the country.