Although his 100th birthday — June 28 — has passed, the Richard Rodgers centenary celebrations continue. On October 5, the Westchester Philharmonic will present an evening devoted to the tunes of the late composer.
A 20th anniversary benefit for the Philharmonic, the evening will include Rodgers' collaborations with both Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein. Those scheduled to take part in the two-part evening — "Rodgers & Hart on Broadway" and "Rodgers & Hammerstein at the Movies" — include Liz Callaway, Phylicia Rashad and Lucie Arnaz. Paul Lustig Dunkel will conduct the orchestra, and the concert's special guest will be Linda Rodgers, daughter of the famed composer.
During his lifetime, Richard Rodgers penned over 900 songs. His partnerships with Lorenz Hart and later with Oscar Hammerstein II produced some of the most successful musicals in Broadway history. His works with Hart included On Your Toes, Babes in Arms, I Married an Angel, The Boys from Syracuse, Pal Joey and By Jupiter, and the Rodgers-Hammerstein collaboration spawned Oklahoma!, Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I, Flower Drum Song and The Sound of Music. The hit revival of Oklahoma! currently plays Broadway's Gershwin Theatre, and Flower Drum Song is now in previews at the Virginia Theatre.
The concert will be held at The Performing Arts Center, which is located at Purchase College, the State University of New York, in Purchase, N.Y. Tickets are available by calling the Philharmonic box office at (914) 682-3707, ext. 10. For more information, go to www.westchesterphil.org.
—By Andrew Gans