|Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Orchestra are thrilled to announce their 2023 Spring Pops season, May 12–June 10, encompassing a celebratory spectrum of concerts and remarkable breadth of musical genres for which “America’s Orchestra” is universally recognized.
Spring Pops 2023 features favorite musical offerings such as a concert version of a Broadway musical (Ragtime: The Symphonic Concert), Disney music (Disney Princess—The Concert), and Film Night (Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi). In addition, it welcomes the returns of Broadway stars Nikki Renée Daniels, Susan Egan, and Alton Fitzgerald White; trumpeter Byron Stripling; pianists Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Michael Feinstein; indie rock band Guster; travel expert Rick Steves; and conductor Charles Floyd—as well as exciting Pops debuts by Broadway vocalists Christy Altomare, Klea Blackhurst, John Cariani, David Harris, Arielle Jacobs, A.J. Shively, Syndee Winters; video game impresario Tommy Tallarico; and Grammy-winning gospel superstar Smokie Norful, among others.
The 136th Boston Pops season takes place in the festive atmosphere of world-famous Symphony Hall, where patrons can sit at cabaret-style tables and order food and drink with family and friends during performances. Tickets to the 2023 Boston Pops season, starting at $33, are available beginning on Tuesday, March 28, at 10 a.m., in person at the Symphony Hall Box Office, by calling 888-266-1200, or by visiting www.bostonpops.org.
This is Maestro Lockhart’s 28th year leading the Pops, making him its second longest-serving conductor since the Pops was founded in 1885, after Arthur Fiedler. Message from Keith Lockhart, Julian and Eunice Cohen Boston Pops Conductor
“What I love most about planning each Boston Pops spring season is the challenge of introducing new artists and musical themes while also focusing on the great musical traditions that our wonderful audiences have come to cherish and expect each year. From iconic Broadway musicals, a legendary John Williams film score, and Gospel Night, to Video Games Live, Guster, and an appearance by intrepid world traveler Rick Steves, I think we’ve found that perfect balance for the 2023 season.”
FURTHER DETAILS ABOUT THE 2023 SPRING POPS SEASON
Broadway and Great American Songbook at Pops: Ragtime: The Symphonic Concert and Two Pianos: Who Could Ask for Anything More?
Opening the Boston Pops’ 2023 season on May 12 and 13 is Ragtime: The Symphonic Concert, a special concert version of the 1997 Tony-winning musical Ragtime prepared for the Pops by its original creators, Terrence McNally, Lynn Ahrens, and Stephen Flaherty. Based on the 1975 novel by E.L. Doctorow, Ragtime weaves together the stories of three intersecting groups in the U.S. in the early 20th century: Eastern European immigrants, the African American community in Harlem, and an upper-class white family; hit tunes from the musical include “Wheels of a Dream,” “Make Them Hear You,” and “Back to Before.” The cast for this concert version is headed by Broadway stars Alton Fitzgerald White, Elizabeth Stanley, John Cariani, Nikki Renée Daniels, David Harris, A.J. Shively, and Klea Blackhurst with stage direction by Jason Danieley.
Later in the season, on May 31 and June 1, two of today’s most acclaimed pianists—Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Michael Feinstein—join forces for the first time in Two Pianos: Who Could Ask for Anything More?, an innovative program celebrating the music of George Gershwin and his peers. The Pops and Keith Lockhart are musical partners, with new arrangements of beloved Great American Songbook melodies scored especially for the occasion.
Family-Friendly Programs: Disney Princess—The Concert, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Video Games Live, A Symphonic Journey with Rick Steves
On May 20 and 27, audiences can relive the experiences of their childhood as an all-star quartet of Broadway, television, and animated film icons sing the music of every Disney princess in Disney Princess—The Concert. Drama Desk-nominee Christy Altomare, Tony-nominee Susan Egan, Broadway favorite Arielle Jacobs, and Broadway World Award-winner Syndee Winters—alongside their “magical” music director, Benjamin Rauhala, and enchanting Prince, Adam J. Levy—join conductor Keith Lockhart and the Pops for this celebration of music, animation, and stories. Popular songs to include “How Far I’ll Go” (from Moana), “A Whole New World” (Aladdin), “Colors of the Wind” (Pocahontas), “Part of Your World” (The Little Mermaid), “Almost There” (The Princess and the Frog), and “Let It Go” (Frozen). Patrons are encouraged to add to the festivity by dressing up as their favorite Disney character. (Please note that this production features Broadway performers appearing as themselves. Costumed Disney characters do not appear at this event. Presentation licensed by Disney Concerts. © DISNEY)
During Maestro Lockhart’s tenure, the Pops has been at the forefront of performances of film music alongside screenings of beloved Hollywood classics, including recent performances of Star Wars: A New Hope, Jaws, Back to the Future, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Wizard of Oz, and Singin’ in the Rain. This year, the Pops presents live orchestral accompaniments of Pops Conductor Laureate John Williams‘ blockbuster score to Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983) with screenings of the complete film on May 25, 26, and 27. (Star Wars: Return of the Jedi is produced under license by Disney Concerts in association with 20th Century Fox and Warner/Chappell Music. STAR WARS and related properties are trademarks and/or copyrights, in the United States and other countries, of Lucasfilm Ltd. and/or its affiliates. © & TM)
Video game music has become one of the hottest genres for concert performance in recent years, and this year for the first time became eligible for Grammy Award consideration. On June 3, the Pops ventures into the world of gaming with Video Games Live, an immersive concert experience featuring music from iconic video games—Halo, Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy, Skyrim, Metal Gear Solid, and many more—and accompanying visuals that will evoke the energy and excitement of a rock concert with the fun and interactivity only video games can provide. Created, produced, and hosted by game industry impresario Tommy Tallarico, the evening will include a costume contest and a meet-and-greet with top game composers, designers, and industry talent. Emmanuel Fratianni conducts.
Returning to Spring Pops on June 8 & 9 after a successful 2019 debut, PBS travel expert Rick Steves will take audiences on a Symphonic Journey through Europe. The performance, conducted by Keith Lockhart, combines Europe’s most stirring Romantic-era musical movements with stunning high-definition cinematography and Steves’ insights into European culture and history. As he did the last time he was at Symphony Hall, Steves will host a pre-concert talk at 6:30 p.m.
A Joyful Noise: Roots of Jazz: Trumpet Titans, Guster, and Gospel Night
On May 17 and 18, trumpet virtuoso Byron Stripling explores with the Pops and Keith Lockhart the extraordinary musical legacies of jazz trumpeters Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie, and Miles Davis, plus timeless music such as New Orleans staple “When the Saints Go Marching In,” tunes from “Charleston” composer and jazz pioneer James P. Johnson, and works by Duke Ellington. The program continues the popular Roots of Jazz series that began with a BSO NOW concert stream that aired during the pandemic and continued last season with Duke Ellington Reimagined.
On June 6 and 7, the Pops and Maestro Lockhart are joined by the indie-rock band Guster. Guster originated at Tufts University in the mid-’90s and has garnered a loyal following through its distinctive vocal harmonies, elliptical lyrics, and social consciousness with songs like “Satellite,” “Fa Fa,” and “Amsterdam.” Together, with the Pops, they will perform some of their greatest hits. The performance on June 6 will also feature winners of the Fidelity Investments Young Artists Competition. These talented young musicians, chosen from high-school entrants across Massachusetts, will receive mentoring from Lockhart, Guster, and others, culminating in their first performances at Symphony Hall. (This year, WBZ TV has partnered with Fidelity Investments and the Boston Pops in support of the competition and expanding the reach of our message throughout the community.)
To close the season on June 10, returning conductor Charles Floyd leads the 29th annual Gospel Night performance, featuring the Boston Pops Gospel Choir and special guest Smokie Norful. Best known for his 2002 album I Need You Now and the 2004 release Nothing Without You for which he won a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Soul Gospel Album, Norful has released five #1 Billboard Albums and been named Billboard’s “Gospel Artist of the Year” several times. He is the founding senior pastor of Victory Cathedral Worship Center in Illinois.
Boston Pops Spring 2023 Ticket Purchasing
Tickets for the Boston Pops season at Symphony Hall, starting at $33, are available at bostonpops.org or 617-266-1200 beginning on March 28 at 10 a.m. Performances start at 8 p.m., except for the 2 p.m. matinee performances of Ragtime: The Symphonic Concert on May 12 and Disney Princess—The Concert on May 20 and 27.
Groups of 20 or more may receive up to 10% off regular ticket prices and waived handling fees. Please call the Group Sales Office at 800-933-4255 for more details.
The Boston Symphony has a dedicated line for disabled patrons who would like to purchase tickets to BSO, Boston Pops, or Tanglewood concerts, or who need information about disability services at Symphony Hall or Tanglewood. This line can be reached by dialing 617-638-9431. For access via TDD/TTY, please call 617-638-9289. Patrons with disabilities can access Symphony Hall through the Cohen Wing on Huntington Avenue or through the Massachusetts Avenue entrance.