Mason Opera, Orchestra Present Tribute to Rodgers and Hammerstein, Andrew Lloyd Webber

Posted: October 21, 2010 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: October 20, 2010 at 2:08 pm

The songs of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II have been featured on both the stage and silver screen and are cherished by generations of musical theater lovers, while Andrew Lloyd Webber’s blockbuster musicals have been performed in front of countless audiences in productions from Broadway to high schools and colleges across the United States.

This month, George Mason University Opera joins the George Mason University Chamber Orchestra for “A Tribute to the Music of Rodgers and Hammerstein and Andrew Lloyd Webber.” The production will be performed in Harris Theater on Mason’s Fairfax Campus.

Show times are

  • Friday, Oct. 29, at 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, Oct. 30, at 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, Oct. 31, at 2 p.m.

Patricia Miller, University Professor of Music and the director of Mason’s vocal studies program, will lead the Mason Opera; Maureen Codelka, an adjunct professor in Mason’s School of Music, will direct.

Dennis Layendecker, Heritage Chair of Music and the director of the School of Music and the university orchestras, will conduct the Mason Chamber Orchestra for these performances.

“These songs are so familiar to everyone,” Miller says. “So many of us have memories attached to these timeless melodies and have lived with this music all of our lives. It takes a trained voice to do them justice. When you hear the beautiful melodies from ‘The King and I’ and ‘Carousel,’ and from ‘The Phantom of the Opera,’ accompanied by the richness of the orchestra, it is very much like ‘Mi Chiamano Mimi’ from ‘La Bohème or ‘Habanera’ from ‘Carmen.’

“This production has allowed the opportunity for a wonderful collaboration between our instrumental and vocal students, under the guidance of our vocal faculty, as well as the direction of Dennis Layendecker, who will conduct these performances.”

The first half of the program will feature favorites from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s most beloved musicals, including

  • “The Carousel Waltz” from “Carousel”
  • “Some Enchanted Evening,” “There is Nothin’ Like a Dame” and “A Wonderful Guy” from “South Pacific”
  • “I Have Dreamed” and “Shall We Dance?” from “The King and I”
  • “I Enjoy Being a Girl” from “Flower Drum Song”
  • “The Surrey with the Fringe on Top” and “Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’” from “Oklahoma!”

The second half will feature the most popular songs from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sensational musicals, including

  • “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” from “Evita”
  • “All I Ask of You” and “Music of the Night” from “The Phantom of the Opera”
  • “Memory” and “Jellicle Ball” from “Cats”
  • “Sunset Boulevard” and “With One Look” from “Sunset Boulevard.”

For more information about the Mason Opera or this production, contact the School of Music at 703-993-1380 or music@gmu.edu.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students and seniors. A limited number of tickets are free for students with a valid Mason ID. Charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or see cfa.gmu.edu.

Write to gazette at gazette@gmu.edu