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Lincoln Center’s American Songbook Brings the Stars Together For the Songs of Scott Frankel and Michael Korie

American Songbook

ZEALnyc, February 8, 2018

While many people think every concert or event that occurs at Lincoln Center is of a “classical” nature, that couldn’t be any further from the truth. Take Lincoln Center’s American Songbook series. While many of New York City’s foremost classically-based arts organizations call Lincoln Center home (New York Philharmonic, Metropolitan Opera, New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, among others), Lincoln Center is also home to the Film Society of Lincoln Center, Lincoln Center Theater, Jazz at Lincoln Center, each having multiple venues to house and further their various missions.  In addition, there is a wide-ranging and culturally diverse array of music, theater and dance performances presented each year through the Lincoln Center Festival and Lincoln Center’s Out-of-Doors.

Another one of Lincoln Center’s longstanding institutions, now it its 19th year, is the American Songbook Series. The programming of this series reflects the voices and stories of singers, songwriters, and musicians across numerous styles and genres. From musical theater to Americana to R&B and gospel, the concerts chronicle personal journeys, pay tribute to legendary artists, and showcase the breadth of creativity, emotion, and expression found throughout American song. This year’s series began the end of January and continues through the end of March, hosting some of the most celebrated and sought-after creators and performers of our day.


(l. to r.) Lyricist Michael Korie; photo: Matthew Murphy; Composer Scott Frankel; photo: Kevin McDermott.

(l. to r.) Lyricist Michael Korie; photo: Matthew Murphy; Composer Scott Frankel; photo: Kevin McDermott.

Coming up on February 17 will be an evening devoted to the music of composer Scott Frankel and lyricist Michael Korie, the team behind Broadway musicals Grey Gardens and War Paint, and two of today’s top contributors of new standards to the American musical theater repertoire. For this special evening Frankel and Korie will be joined by one of the foremost leading ladies of the stage, Kelli O’Hara, having starred in Frankel and Korie’s Playwrights Horizons production of Far From Heaven, and the celebrated English stage, television, and film star Julian Ovenden (Downton Abbey). Also making special appearances for this Appel Room performance are Tony nominees Brandon Victor Dixon (The Color Purple), Melissa Errico (Amour), The Honeymooners star Leslie Kritzer, Scarlett Strallen of The Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, and Tony nominee and star of Prince on Broadway Tony Yazbeck.

Scarlett Strallen

Scarlett Strallen

In speaking about this year’s programming, Jane Moss, Lincoln Center’s Ehrenkranz Artistic Director said “Each season of American Songbook juxtaposes the popular music of our time while honoring that of the past and anticipating the voices of the future. From the world of Broadway to television to the backroads of Alabama to Duluth, Minnesota, this year we are covering considerable ground. Each of these artists moves us with their creativity, personal stories, and, for many of them, their much-needed humor.”

The series is hosted at three different venues at Lincoln Center. The Appel Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center, with its floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Columbus Circle, hosts cabaret-style performances that include table seating, close proximity to the performers, and an incomparable view of the Manhattan skyline. The series returns this year to the Rose Theater for the first time since 2005, to a venue which maintains an intimate atmosphere even though it is the largest of Jazz at Lincoln Center’s performance spaces, as well as the David Rubenstein Atrium, an indoor public space offering hundreds of free programs each year.

Julian Ovenden

Julian Ovenden

For more information on this and other upcoming concerts in this series and to purchase tickets, click here.

For the latest news and reviews on theater in New York City and beyond click here.

For a listing of Broadway shows click here.

Cover: Kelli O’Hara; photo: Laura Marie Duncan.


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