Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Announces Details of the Star-Spangled Spectacular at Oregon Ridge Park, Featuring: Soprano Jaqueline Echols and Emcee and Narrator Ryan Wagner and the Winners of the 8th Annual “O, Say Can You Sing” Competition July 3 & July 4, 2015

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Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Announces Details of the
Star-Spangled Spectacular at Oregon Ridge Park, Featuring:

Soprano Jaqueline Echols and Emcee and Narrator Ryan Wagner

and the Winners of the 8th Annual “O, Say Can You Sing” Competition
July 3 & July 4, 2015


Baltimore, Md. (June 17, 2015) –Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) Assistant Conductor Nicholas Hersh will lead the orchestra in their annual Independence Day celebrations at Oregon Ridge Park on July 3 and 4 at 8 p.m.

The Orchestra will perform Fourth of July favorites including Broadway show tunes, film scores, Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture and Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever. Voice of the Baltimore Orioles Ryan Wagner will emcee the two concerts and serve as narrator for Ernest Thayer’s Casey at the Bat.

The patriotic concert also features “O, Say Can You Sing” competition winners Karleigh Hubble (July 3) and Sarah Barker (July 4) performing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and soprano Jaqueline Echols will make her BSO debut singing favorites by Puccini and Gershwin as well as other light classics. The concert culminates in a grand fireworks display.

Patrons are invited to arrive early with lawn chairs, blankets and picnic dinners. Attendees will also be able to purchase local fare from Baltimore-based food trucks made possible in Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s partnership with The Gathering.


Star-Spangled Spectacular
Friday, July 3, 2015 at 8 p.m. – Oregon Ridge Park
Saturday, July 4, 2015 at 8 p.m. – Oregon Ridge Park

Nicholas Hersh, conductor
Jacqueline Echols, soprano
Ryan Wagner, Emcee and Narrator
Karleigh Hubble, (July 3) Winner of the “O, Say Can You Sing Competition”
Sarah Barker, (July 4) Winner of the “O, Say Can You Sing Competition”

Program to include Broadway show tunes, film scores and Fourth of July favorites: Casey at the Bat, Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture, Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever.


Artist Biographies

Nicholas Hersh, conductor

Assistant Conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Nicholas Hersh has served as Music Director of the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra in Indiana and Assistant Conductor with the National Repertory Orchestra in Colorado. He has appeared in concert with the New World Symphony in Miami and the Southern Great Lakes Symphony in Detroit, and he has served as cover conductor with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra and the Aspen Music Festival. In 2011 and 2012, he was a Conducting Fellow at the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen, and he is a recipient of the Solti Foundation US Career Assistance Award.

Mr. Hersh grew up in Evanston, Illinois and started his musical training with the cello. He earned a bachelor’s degree in music from Stanford University and a master’s degree in conducting from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, studying with David Effron and Arthur Fagen. He also counts Robert Spano, Hugh Wolff and Larry Rachleff among his conducting mentors, and he has participated in master classes with Bernard Haitink and Michael Tilson Thomas.

Mr. Hersh’s performance credits span a diverse range of genres beyond the traditional concert canon, including opera, Broadway, pops, choral, Viennese dance, ballet and film music. An avid performer of new music, he has conducted world premieres of two silent film scores live with pit orchestra and projection, as well as an opera, a symphony and numerous concert pieces. He also continues to earn acclaim for his skill as an arranger and orchestrator. Mr. Hersh’s arrangements include commissions from the Cleveland Pops, the National Repertory Orchestra and the Jackson Symphony, and in 2013 his orchestral arrangement of Queen’s famous “Bohemian Rhapsody” saw worldwide success after the video of its premiere went viral on the Internet.


Jaqueline Echols, soprano

Lyric soprano Jacqueline Echols has been praised for her “dynamic range and vocal acrobatics” (Classical Voice) in theaters across the United States. Her 2015-2016 season includes her return to Washington National Opera for Micaëla in Carmen and Woglinde and Forest Bird in the full Ring Cycle, as well as her house and role debuts as Pip in Los Angeles Opera’s production of Moby Dick. Recent seasons have seen Ms. Echols with North Carolina Opera as the title role in La Traviata and Musetta in La bohème, as well as with the Glimmerglass Festival as Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Giulietta in King for a Day and Echo in Ariadne auf Naxos directed by Francesca Zambello. A graduate of Washington National Opera’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program, Echols was seen in previous seasons at the Kennedy Center as the Unicorn in the world premiere of Jeanine Tesori’s The Lion, the Unicorn, and Me, the First Lady in Mozart’s The Magic Flute under the baton of Music Director Philippe Auguin and as Clorinda in Rossini’s La Cenerentola. Additional appearances include Cincinnati Opera as Countess Ceprano in Rigoletto, First Lady in The Magic Flute and Clara in Porgy and Bess; Micaela in Carmen with Eugene Opera; and New York Harlem Productions as both Clara and Bess in Porgy and Bess, for which she was featured in the documentary Porgy and Me which premiered in Germany in January 2010. A native of Detroit, Ms. Echols is a 2012 second prize winner at the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition. She completed her master’s degree and artist diploma at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), where she appeared as the Female Chorus in The Rape of Lucretia, the Countess in The Marriage of Figaro, Anne Truelove in The Rake’s Progress and Pamina in The Magic Flute.


Ryan Wagner, Emcee and Narrator

Ryan Wagner is honored to have been asked to host and narrate this truly remarkable event. A Baltimore native, Ryan was always a very loud child. After college he immediately moved to New York City to pursue a career on the stage, including two years spent as a cast member of the Broadway National Tour of The Wizard of Oz and countless plays and musicals at theatres around the country. He then took a break from the world of acting to pursue a career in the world of professional sports, and in 2011, Ryan was selected as one of two original hosts of the MLB Fan Cave, a social and digital media concept created by Major League Baseball to engage fans around the world. Following his year in “The Cave,” Ryan returned home to Baltimore and was hired as the public address announcer for the Baltimore Orioles, work he continues to do today. Additionally, Ryan works as a freelance voiceover artist, spokesperson, host, emcee and general Jack-of-all-Trades. He also continues to act and sing in musicals around the area. In his free time Ryan enjoys craft beer, napping and road trips, but never at the same time.


“O, Say Can You Sing” Competition Winners 2015

Karleigh Hubble
Karleigh Hubble, 17, is a 2015 graduate of South Carroll High School. She was a participant in the 2014 Maryland All-State Mixed Chorus, and participated with the South Carroll High School chorus at the 2014 Maryland State Choral Festival. She loves musical theatre and has performed as Bombalurina (CATS) and Reno Sweeney (Anything Goes) in her high school theatre productions and as Éponine in TACTICC’s production of Les Misérables. She is an accomplished dancer and has studied classical ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary styles of dance since the age of four, and is a soloist with the Visionary Dance Company with the American School of Inspiration. She has studied voice with Lydia Courtney Pope (LC Studios, Eldersburg) and Aly Cardinalli (American School of Inspiration). Karleigh will be attending Rowan University in the fall to study Musical Theatre.

Sarah Barker
Soprano Sarah Barker, 17, is a graduating senior at Liberty High School in Eldersburg, Maryland, where she was a member of the Honors Vocal Ensemble directed by Zayna Burnham and then Michael Rainbow. She sings with the Young Artists of America at Strathmore and performs as a soloist and hymn leader at Wesley Freedom United Methodist Church. She has studied voice privately with Lydia Courtney and as part of the Carroll County Eisteddfod festival, Maryland All State Chorus, ACDA Eastern Honor Choir, Maryland Summer Center of the Arts and the Solo Vocal Artist program at Westminster Choir College. This fall, she will be continuing her voice studies at Carnegie Mellon University with the goal of pursuing a career in opera.


Tickets are general admission lawn seating and are available through the BSO Ticket Office, or at the park gate. Advanced tickets are $18 for adults and $9 for children under 12. If purchased at the gate, tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children under 12.

Free parking is available at the Verizon lot on Shawan Road with shuttle to the park. Permits for onsite parking can be purchased for $12 in advance from the BSO Ticket Office or for $15 at the gate.

Concertgoers are invited to bring lawn chairs, blankets and picnics for a full evening of entertainment with the BSO.



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