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A Night at the Great Stages Gala

Glad to have joined Renée Fleming at the Great Stages Gala, a new gala celebration to benefit the great stages of the Academy of Music, the Miller Theater, and the Kimmel Center. The Great Stages Gala—featuring performances with Music and Artistic Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Angélique Kidjo, Renée Fleming, and a star-studded lineup of special guests—honors our shared history and heralds a new era for the performing arts in Philadelphia. Many thanks for the invitation, Renée!

Below are a few photos from my time at the Luminaries Reception, Gala Soiree, Pre-concert Promenade and Concert at the Kimmel Cultural Campus.

Performance Details*

Yannick Nézet-Séguin Conductor Jim Gardner Speaker Renée Fleming Soprano Angélique Kidjo Vocalist Rodgers “The Carousel Waltz,” from Carousel Puts “Evening” Rodgers “You'll Never Walk Alone,” from Carousel Puccini “O mio babbino caro,” from Gianni Schicchi Price Third movement from Symphony No. 1 Kidjo “Ominira” Kidjo “Malaika” Kidjo “Afirika” Cohen “Hallelujah” Bacharach “What the World Needs Now Is Love”

An unforgettable performance celebrating more than a century-long commitment to the transformative power of the arts led by Music and Artistic Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin and The Philadelphia Orchestra, joined by Renée Fleming and Angélique Kidjo, two artists beloved around the world.

The evening begins with Broadway favorites, including Richard Rodgers' The Carousel Waltz and the breathtaking classic "You'll Never Walk Alone" from Carousel, performed by five-time GRAMMY winner and recipient of the National Medal of Arts Renée Fleming. Fleming, who has performed for audiences numbering in the millions including the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony and the Super Bowl, also sang one of the most moving songs ever written for opera, Puccini's "O mia babbino caro," and GRAMMY-winning composer Kevin Puts' serenely beautiful "Evening," from the album for which Renée Fleming and Yannick Nézet-Séguin won a 2023 GRAMMY Award.

Five-time GRAMMY-winning vocalist Angélique Kidjo took the stage for a selection of her iconic songs, including lushly orchestrated versions of the beguiling “Ominira” and the traditional Kenyan folk song “Malaika,” plus her rousing, signature ode to her mother continent “Afirika.” Beloved around the world, Angélique Kidjo takes her fans on genre-bending musical odysseys that incorporate the traditions of Africa with elements of American R&B, funk, and jazz and has been recognized by TIME magazine, Forbes, and the BBC as one of the most influential artists in the world.

Then in a spectacular finale, these two fabled singers joined forces for unforgettable renditions of Leonard Cohen’s anthem “Hallelujah” and Burt Bachrach’s paean to peace and hope “What the World Needs Now Is Love.”

*Details from:



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