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Black Tie International:  Gala Benefit for Young People's Chorus of NYC

Maurice Hines

Maurice Hines.  Photo by:  S. Suchman




Other Guest Artists include Dafnis Prieto, New York Voices,
 Rob Kapilow, and Broadway’s Sean Bradford and Janet Dacal


Tickets on Sale Now


The award-winning Young People’s Chorus of New York City™ (YPC) and its artistic director and founder Francisco J. Núñez welcome The New York Pops and the legendary star of stage, screen, and television Maurice Hines, who will headline the chorus’s 2010 fundraising gala—It’s up to you, New York—on Monday, March 15, at 7 p.m. in Frederick P. Rose Hall, home of Jazz at Lincoln Center, where the YPC is the resident chorus.  YPC, also in residence at the 92nd Street Y and WNYC, New York Public Radio, continues to better the lives of thousands of children of all economic, religious, and ethnic backgrounds from ages 7 to 18.  Funds raised from this gala will support general operating expenses, as well as scholarships for more than half of the members of the chorus.

Maurice Hines, The New York Pops, all five divisions of the YPC, as well as children from the YPC’s Satellite program in New York City schools, will be joined by a roster of exciting guest artists onstage at the Rose Theater.  Among them will be the superstar Latin and jazz percussionist Dafnis Prieto, New York Voices, composer Rob Kapilow, and Broadway’s Sean Bradford and Janet Dacal.

Mr. Hines will perform several numbers from Sophisticated Ladies with cast members from the acclaimed musical revue based on the music of Duke Ellington. Following the March 15 gala, he will star in a new production of the brassy retrospective of big band song and dance from the Roaring 20s to the Swing Era at Washington, D.C.’s Arena Stage in April and May.

 Among other gala highlights, the members of the YPC will sing a lively compilation of musical odes to all parts of the city from “Downtown” and “On Broadway” to “Uptown Girl” and “Crosstown M42,” written by Rob Kapilow and mouth sounds artist from Prairie Home Companion, Fred Newman, which takes listeners on a virtual musical ride on the M42 bus from the Hudson River on the West Side to the East River.  Dafnis Prieto will demonstrate why the jazz community is calling him “the most impressive young drummer to come on the jazz scene during the past decade,” and Broadway stars Janet Dacal from In the Heights and Sean Bradford from Broadway’s The Lion King will perform with the YPC, including the premiere of “We Lift you Up,” an inspirational song by Mr. Núñez and composer Jim Papoulis written in tribute to the courage of the Haitian people and all responders, as Haiti begins to recover from the recent devastation.

Tickets for the 7:00 p.m. concert only, begin at $50 and are available now from and at the Rose Theater, 60th Street and Broadway.

Following the 7:00 p.m. concert, dinner will be served in the Allen Room, where guests will dine on cuisine against a backdrop of stunning views of Central Park and the Manhattan skyline through the room’s floor-to-ceiling glass wall. 

The gala evening, co-chaired by Nancy Bloom, Adam Chinn, Shauna Denkensohn, Suzan Kremer, and Roger Ross, will honor YPC board member Holcomb B. Noble and corporate sponsor Toyota for their extraordinary support of the YPC

For Gala tickets, please e-mail or call
212-289-7779, Ext. 31.  More information is available from

In addition, a brand-new LX150 Vespa scooter, which boasts 70 to 70 miles per gallon, is being raffled off at $100 per ticket with all proceeds going to the Young People’s Chorus of New York City™. Raffle tickets are available at the Gala or by calling
212-289-7779, Ext. 31.

For more than two decades, the Young People’s Chorus of
 New York City™
under Founder and Artistic Director Francisco J. Núñez has provided children of diverse abilities and ethnic backgrounds with a unique program of music education and choral performance, while maintaining a model of artistic excellence and harmony that enriches the community. In the process, YPC has become one of today’s most influential children’s choruses, with global performances, acclaimed recordings, collaborations with many of the world’s most highly regarded composers and performers, and commissioners of new works through their celebrated Transient Glory® series.  More than 1,100 children participate annually through YPC’s core after-school program, its Satellite program in seven New York City schools and its national affiliates in Erie, PA, and Tenafly, NJ.  Season highlights include a Carnegie Hall collaboration with the Kronos Quartet, their Swiss debut with the Geneva Chamber Orchestra, and their third trip to Japan for 15-city tour this summer.

New York-born Maurice Hines has won acclaim as an actor, director, jazz singer, dancer, and choreographer. His career began performing and touring with his younger brother Gregory as the opening act for such headliners as Lionel Hampton and Gypsy Rose Lee.  Soon their father joined them, and as Hines, Hines & Dad, they won fame in the U.S. and Europe, including 35 appearances on The Tonight Show.  His success as Nathan Detroit in the National Touring Company’s “Guys and Dolls” launched his solo career.  Since then he’s starred in “Eubie!” on Broadway, “Bring Back Birdie,” “Sophisticated Ladies,” and many other productions.  His film debut in Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Cotton Club” and the creation of the dance company, Ballet U.S.A. with Mercedes Ellington followed, and he was soon directing and choreographing both stage productions and music videos.  Most recently, Mr. Hines was named artistic director of the Lincoln Theatre in Columbus, home to Central Ohio’s flourishing African-American culture and a Midwest precursor to the Harlem Renaissance.

All About Jazz has written that Cuban-born drummer, composer, and percussionist Dafnis Prieto ”is easily the most impressive young drummer to come on the jazz scene during the past decade. Possessing awesome virtuosity and astonishing versatility, Prieto has made important contributions to the music of a broad range of leaders… His compositions are elaborate composites melding Afro-Cuban rhythms and modern jazz harmonies into music that is ecstatic and intelligent.”  Just 29, Mr. Prieto has toured the U.S. and Europe and has performed with many of the world’s great jazz artists, such as Eddie Palmieri, Roy Hargrove, Don Byron, Branford Marsalis, Herbie Hancock, Arturo Sandoval, Chucho Valdez, and with his own band, the Dafnis Prieto Quintet. As a composer, he has created music for dance, film, and chamber ensembles and composed the title track for Arturo O’Farril’s Grammy winning album, “Song for Chico.”  Mr. Prieto is a member of the jazz percussion faculty at New York University.

The New York Pops is the largest independent pops orchestra in the United States and the only professional symphonic orchestra in New York City specializing in popular music. Led by Music Director Steven Reineke, the orchestra performs an annual subscription series and birthday gala at Carnegie Hall, enjoying one of the highest subscription renewal rates of any series at Carnegie Hall. The New York Pops was founded by former NBC Music Director Skitch Henderson in 1983 with a mission to create greater public awareness and appreciation of America’s rich musical heritage through presentation of concerts and education programs of the highest quality.

New York Voices, the Grammy-winning vocal ensemble renowned for their excellence in jazz and the art of group singing, celebrates their 20th anniversary this year.  Like the great groups that have come before, they have learned from the best and taken the art form to new levels. Their interests are rooted in jazz, but often Brazilian, R & B, classical, and pop influences are infused with equal creativity and authenticity, and they have sung with some of the most respected names in the business, from the Count Basie Orchestra and the Boston Pops to Nancy Wilson, Bobby McFerrin, George Benson, and Paquito D’Rivera. Following a performance with the Cincinnati Pops, the Cincinnati Enquirer wrote “"The group's incomparable blend, hip delivery and great arrangements resulted in one swinging party.  Their four-part harmonizing was so close, it was hard to tell where one voice ended and another began."

Janet Dacal, who this month debuts in the role of Nina in Broadway’s In the Heights, originated the role of Carla in the original Off-Broadway production. She has also been featured in Frank Wildhorn's Wonderland, Good Vibrations, Señor Discretion Himself, Five Course Love, Four Guys Named Jose, and Annie, among others. Ms. Dacal has recorded and toured with such major artists as Gloria EstefanJon Secada and Luis Enrique.

Sean Bradford, currently featured in the cast of Kander and Ebb’s Scottsboro Boys, made his Broadway debut in the role of Simba in The Lion King.  Mr. Bradford graduated from Northwestern University in 2006, and since then appeared in The Yellow Wood directed by B.D. Wong and June B. Jones for Theatreworks USA.

Composer Rob Kapilow is dedicated to bringing music into people's lives and opening new ears to musical experiences. Crosstown M42, which teamed him with mouth sounds artist Fred Newman of Prairie Home Companion fame, uses the voice to replicate a symphony of sounds. The piece takes listeners on a bus ride from the West Side of Manhattan to the East Side and melds traditional choral sound with more than 50 everyday sounds made into music.




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