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Thursday, 13 April 2017 16:05

TSO The Best of Rodgers and Hammerstein with Chilina Kennedy

Written by  Dennis Kucherawy
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Soloists include Canadian Broadway star Chilina Kennedy

with Multi-Award-Winning Amabile Choirs of London, Ontario

Next Week - Tuesday and Wednesday, April 18th at 8 p.m., Wed. Matinee at 2 p.m. – Roy Thomson Hall

Straight from two years starring on Broadway in the Tony Award-winning “Beautiful – The Carole King Musical,” acclaimed Stratford and Shaw Festival veteran Chilina Kennedy returns to sing next week

with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) as it

performs “The Best of Rodgers & Hammerstein.”


A triple-theatre entertainer, she joins Broadway tenor Ryan Silverman (“Chicago,” “Side Show” and “The Phantom of the Opera”) and the award-winning Amabile Choirs of London, ON, a renowned multi-generational and inclusive choral organizations which are returning to play with the TSO for the third time. Steven Reineke will conduct.

This is a chance to see and hear Chilina Kennedy perform before she repeats her acclaimed performance as Carole King in Toronto with “Beautiful’s” national tour.  The engagement lasts from June 27th to August 20th.  Kennedy then is scheduled to return to Broadway.

TSO’s The Best of Rodgers and Hammerstein will feature memorable songs and melodies from each of the 11 musicals on which they collaborated.  The classic pieces and songs will include:

From “Carousel”:

·      “The Carousel Waltz”

·      “Solioquy” (“My Boy Bill”), and

·      “You’ll Never Walk Alone.”

From “South Pacific”:

“You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught”

“A Wonderful Guy”

“Some Enchanted Evening,” and

“There is Nothing Like a Dame”

From “The Sound of Music”:

·      “Prologue” and “The Sound of Music”

·      “Edelweiss,” and

·      “Climb Ev’ry Mountain”

… and much more from “Oklahoma,” “State Fair,” “Allegro,” “The King and I,” “Me and Juliet,” “Pipe Dream,” “Cinderella, and “The Flower Drum Song.”

Chilina Kennedy is no stranger to Rodgers & Hammerstein’s songs.  She has performed many of them, but has only performed one musical of theirs.  That was the May 2014 Drayton Festival hit production of “South Pacific” in which she played Nellie Forbush, the leading role.

Her favorite songs from the show, she told Song & Script in an e-mail interview, are “You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught” because of its message against racism and “Some Enchanted Evening.”  “It always wins my heart,” she said.

“The Sound of Music” remains her favorite Rodgers and Hammerstein musical: “I’ve loved it since I was a child and have always wanted to play Maria.”

Rodgers & Hammerstein still are regarded as musical theatre pioneers. It began in 1943 with “Oklahoma,” which author Tom Santopietro wrote in his book “The Sound of Music Story,” “revolutionized” musical theatre.  It did so by incorporating design, song and dance together to serve the story.  Prior to that, shows were either traditional European-style operettas or star-driven, light-hearted productions in which the sole purpose of plots was to introduce songs.

Rodgers and Hammerstein built upon the 1927 breakthrough musical “Show Boat” that book writer/lyricist Hammerstein had created with composer Jerome Kern.  “(They) began writing musicals in which action and character formed such an essential part of the libretto that composer and lyricist were now free to delve deeper into characters’ inner lives, exploring subtext and psychological motivation in their masterful `South Pacific,’ `Carousel’ and `The King and I. By the time their partnership ended, they had produced 11 scores in a mere 17 years,” wrote Santopietro.

“I think their collaboration produced material that was ahead of its time,” says Chilina Kennedy.  “The music is just glorious and the lyrics and subject matter are not only smart but they deal with important human circumstances.  `South Pacific’ is a perfect example of that. But Maria’s relationship to love and with God (in ‘The Sound of Music’) is another perfect example.”

Tickets:  TSO – The Best of Rodgers and Hammerstein

To order tickets and for information, call the box office at:

416-598-3375 or visit www.tso.ca


Roy Thomson Hall

60 Simcoe Street

Toronto, ON.

Visit Song & Script for our wide selection of Rodgers & Hammerstein CDs and DVDs.  Also available is Chilina Kennedy’s debut CD “What You Find in a Bottle.”

By Dennis Kucherawy

Last modified on Thursday, 13 April 2017 16:45
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