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Segerstrom Center Hosts “A Broadway Birthday: Sondheim, Lloyd Webber, and Friends” on March 28

March 22 is a special day in theatrical history—it’s the birthday of two of Broadway’s legendary composers, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Stephen Sondheim.

Sondheim was born in New York in 1930. Over his 70-year career he penned lyrics (and often the music) for such noted classics as “West Side Story,” “Company,” “A Little Night Music,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Into the Woods,” and many others. He died in 2021.

Lloyd Webber was born n London in 1948, and is know for the musicals “Phantom of the Opera,” “Cats,” Evita,” “Sunset Boulevard,” and many more.

To celebrate the occasion, Segerstrom Center for the Arts is presenting a special evening on Thursday, March 28 called “A Broadway Birthday: Sondheim, Lloyd Webber, and Friends.”

The “friends” celebrating this unusual joint birthday celebration are the Tony-winning legend Betty Buckley (who starred in two Sondheim musicals, “Cats” and “Sunset Boulevard”), Segerstrom Center favorite Liz Callaway, Alex Joseph Grayson (direct from the acclaimed new revival of “Parade”), Aaron Lazar and Kerry O’Malley (who recently spread holiday cheer in Segerstrom’s Cabaret Series with the “Broadway Hollywood Holiday Songbook”), plus  TV star and Orange County School of the Arts Hall of Fame alumni Matthew Morrison.

Tickets start at $49 and are available for purchase online at www.scfta.org, in person at 600 Town Center Dr. in Costa Mesa, and by phone at (714) 556-2787.

About the Birthday Boys

Stephen Sondheim

According to information from Segerstrom Center, Stephen Sondheim was widely acknowledged as the most innovative, most influential, and most important composer and lyricist in modern Broadway history. He was the winner of an Academy Award, numerous Tony Awards, multiple Grammy Awards and a Pulitzer Prize.

Some of his other accolades include a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Kennedy Center Honors (1993), the National Medal of Arts (1996), the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Gold Medal for Music (2006) and a special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre (2008).

Andrew Lloyd Webber

Andrew Lloyd Webber has received a number of awards, including a knighthood in 1992, followed by a peerage for services to the arts, six Tonys, three Grammys (as well as the Grammy Legend Award), an Academy Award, seven Olivier Awards, a Golden Globe, a Brit Award, the 2006 Kennedy Center Honors.

He is one of 17 people to have won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy, and a Tony. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, is an inductee into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame, and is a fellow of the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers, and Authors.

In 2001, The New York Times referred to him as “the most commercially successful composer in history”.

About the Artists

Betty Buckley

In an award-winning career that has encompassed TV, film, stage and concert work around the globe, Betty Buckley is probably best known as the quintessential musical theatre actress. Dubbed “The Voice of Broadway,” the multitalented artist is one of a precious few who helped change the face of musical theatre acting with her realistic, naturalistic approach to roles and her unique, expressive voice.

In addition to her contributions to the stage, Buckley has also released an astonishing 16 solo albums, a rarity in the world of musical theatre and in an ever-changing music business.

Buckley is no stranger to Segerstrom Center: she starred in the Broadway tour of “Hello Dolly” that came to The Center in 2019, and she has held audiences spellbound during three cabaret appearances in the Center’s Samueli Theatre, the latest in 2019.

“Segerstrom is one of my favorite arts centers in the world, it’s so beautiful,” said Buckley during an interview.

Liz Callaway

Liz Callaway is also a familiar face to Segerstrom Center audiences. She starred in a cabaret show last year with her sister Ann Hampton Callaway.

Callaway is a Tony and Grammy nominee and Emmy Award-winning actress, singer and recording artist. She made her Broadway debut in Stephen Sondheim’s “Merrily We Roll Along,” received a Tony Award nomination for her performance in “Baby,” and for five years, won acclaim as Grizabella in “Cats” (a role originated by Betty Buckley). She has also starred in the original casts of “Miss Saigon,” “The Three Musketeers,” and “The Look of Love.”

Regional and international credits include “Sunday in the Park with George,” “Evita,” and “Sunset Boulevard.”

Alex Joseph Grayson is an actor and musician from Watertown, New York. He accredits his eclectic artistic influences to a nomadic upbringing as a military brat. Over the last decade, Alex has performed on the biggest stages of the American theatre, including Broadway, National Tours, and several regional theaters.

Aaron Lazar is an actor, singer, producer, and entrepreneur from Cherry Hill, New
Jersey. After earning an MFA in musical theater from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Aaron put plans of being a doctor on hold and moved to New York City. His career spans Broadway, Television, Film, and Concerts and has allowed him to share his passion for the arts with audiences worldwide.

Kelly O’Malley was raised in Nashua, New Hampshire. She was educated at Duke University and the American Repertory Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University. Her television credits include the upcoming second season of Marc Cherry’s “Why Women Kill” for Paramount Plus and many other television credits.

Her New York theatre credits include roles on Broadway (and the First National Tour) in “Irving Berlin’s White Christmas,” Into the Woods,” “On a Clear Day You Can See Forever,” and many others.

Matthew Morrison is a versatile actor who is recognized for his work on-stage and on-screen. He has been nominated for Tony, Emmy and Golden Globe Awards. He made his debut on Broadway in “Footloose” but his big break came when he was cast as heartthrob Link Larkin in the hit “Hairspray.” Morrison was later nominated for a Tony Award for his role in “The Light in the Piazza,” and received a Drama Desk Nomination for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for “10 Million Miles.” He also starred in the Tony-winning revival of “South Pacific” at Lincoln Center Theater in New York.

In 2010, Morrison became a true household name when he was cast as a series regular in FOX’s musical comedy television series “Glee,” where he starred as the director of the glee club. The series wrapped in 2015 after six successful seasons.

The post Segerstrom Center Hosts “A Broadway Birthday: Sondheim, Lloyd Webber, and Friends” on March 28 appeared first on Newport Beach News.


Source: Newport Beach Independent

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