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The New York Pops Gala: For the First Time In Forever: The Songs of Kristen and Bobby Lopez

The New York Pops Gala: For the First Time In Forever: The Songs of Kristen and Bobby Lopez

Last night the New York Pops sparkled with effervescent magic, as they celebrated their 39th Birthday Gala: For The First Time In Forever: The Songs Of Kristen And Bobby Lopez. The overture was at its finest as the tunes from Ave Q, Frozen, Frozen 2, The Book of Mormon, Finding Nemo, Coco, Wanda Vision and In Transit filled Carnegie Hall. Steven Reineke, conducted his orchestra with majesty

Steven Reineke

Steven Reineke

First up was the original voice of Anna from Frozen Kristen Bell, who delighted with “For the First Time In Forever.”

Kristen Bell

Kristen Bell

Kristen was joined by the Else from the London stage version Samantha Barks (Éponine in the film version of the musical Les Misérables.)

Samantha Barks

Samantha Barks, Kristen Bell

Samantha Barks, Steven Reineke

Kristen then duetted on”Love Is An Open Door” with the original voice of Prince Hans, Santino Fontana in the film Frozen. Santino proved he has they comedic acting and vocal chops that have made him win a Tony, two Drama Desk Awards, an Outer Critics Circle Award, Lortel Award, Obie Award, and Clarence Derwent Award.

Santino Fontana

Santino Fontana, Kristen Bell taking selfies.

Santino Fontana, Kristen

Bobby Lopez’s and Jeff Marx’s first hit was Ave Q to sing “The More You Run Someone,” original cast members Stephanie D’Abruzzo and Ann Harada.

Stephanie D’Abruzzo, Ann Harada

Stephanie D’Abruzzo

Ann Harada

Thrilling the audience the original Elder Price from The Book of Mormon, recreated his hit from that show “I Believe.”

Andrew Rannells

Andrew Rannells

Andrew Rannells

Joining Rannells was Josh Gad who was the original Elder Arnold Cunningham for You and Me (But Mostly Me)

Josh Gad, Andrew Rannells

Josh Gad

Josh Gad, Andrew Rannells

Josh Gad, Andrew Rannells

Josh Gad, Andrew Rannells

Josh Gad, Andrew Rannells

Gad was then joined by Nikki M. James, who played Nabulungi in The Book of Mormon, she won the 2011 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical. They recreated “Baptize Me.” James never sounded better, but Gad seemed under the weather, but brought his comedic chops.

Josh Gad, Nikki M. James

Josh Gad, Nikki M. James

Nikki M. James

Josh Gad, Nikki M. James

Josh Gad, Nikki M. James

From Finding Nemo, Mykal Kilgore and Camp Broadway brought to life a rousing “Go With The Flow.”

Mykal Kilgore and Camp Broadway

Mykal Kilgore

Mykal Kilgore

Mykal Kilgore

The Pops honored Nicola M. Heryet, Corporate Honoree

Nicola M. Heryet, Steven Reineke

John Osborn, Corporate Honoree

John Osborn, Steven Reineke

Ron Schaefer, PopsEd Honoree

Ron Schaefer, Steven Reineke

June Freemanzon, Legacy Honoree

Eric Gabbard, June Freemanzon, Steven Reineke

Eric Gabbard, June Freemanzon, Steven Reineke

Looking absolutely stunning Betsy Wolfe, sang one of my favorite Lopez’s song “Getting There” from In Transit.

Betsey Wolfe

Betsey Wolfe

One of my favorite moments was when Jaime Camil (Papi) recreated his Grammy winning song “Remember Me” from Coco.

Jamie Camil

Jamie Camil

Jamie Camil

The Kids On Stage, along with The New York Pops gave a musical and joyous version of “Do You Want To Build a Snowman” from Frozen.

Rocking the house the original Elsa from Broadway Caissie Levy showed why she was a “Monster”.

Caissie Levy

Patti Murin the original Anna from Broadway sang “[The Next Right Thing” from Frozen 2.

Patti Murin

Josh Gad was back to “In Summer” from Frozen.

Josh Gad

Back to join Patti Murin was the dynamic Samantha Barks on “I Can’t Lose You” from Frozen.

Samantha Barks, Patti Murin

Patti Murin

Singing the hit from Frozen 2, “Into The Unknown,” was Samantha Barks and the Lopez’s eldest daughter Katherine.

Katherine Lopez

Katherine Lopez, Samantha Barks

Samantha Barks

The next part was so much fun. The whole Lopez family gave us a Wanda Vision medley, showing how Kristen Lopez is seriously funny.

Kristen & Bobby Lopez

Kristen & Bobby Lopez

Annie, Katherine and Kristen Lopez

Kristen & Bobby Lopez

The original cast of Ave Q, Jennifer Barnhart, Stephanie D’Abruzzo, Jordan Gelber, Ann Harada, Maggie Lakis, Rick Lyon and Rob McClure gave us “For Now.”Sound designer Dan Gerhard again had problems with mics, but the cast made the mistake look like a in joke.

Rick Lyon

Stephanie D’Abruzzo

Rick Lyon, Mykal Kilgore, Rob McClure, Stephanie D’Abruzzo and Ann Harada

Mykal Kilgore, Rick Lyon, and Rob McClure

Ann Harada, Maggie Lakis and Jordan Gelber

Jennifer Barnhart, Mykal Kilgore, Rick Lyon, Rob McClure

Rob McClure

And for the finale “Let It Go” from Frozen was sung by the whole cast as they exchanged mics, because again the sound man was not on the ball. Santino Fontana showed how this could be comical and practical.

Santino Fontana

All in all The New York Pop 39th Birthday Gala: For The First Time In Forever: The Songs Of Kristen And Bobby Lopez was an overwhelming success. I can’t wait to see what they do for their 40th.

All photo’s curtesy of Genevieve Rafter Keddy

 

 

Broadway

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

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