New York University's last major celebration of the year -- a salute to music, theatre and the performing arts -- takes place Nov. 10 with a tribute to legendary Broadway composer Jerry Herman at the Bobst Library on Washington Square.
NYU says its Musical Theatre Hall of Fame was established to honor those making significant contributions to "this uniquely American art form." Previous inductees to the NYU Musical Theatre Hall of Fame include Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, George and Ira Gershwin, George M. Cohan, and John Kander and Fred Ebb, among others.
Jerry Herman's tribute includes a musical salute by NYU musical theatre and performing arts students, a medley of Herman's work performed by director-vocalist Lee Roy Reams and composer-arranger-conductor Don Pippin, as well as a rendition of "The Best of Times Is Now" by Mr. Herman himself. There will be a gala dinner on Nov. 10, at 6:30 PM, in the atrium of NYU's Bobst Library at 70 Washington Square South. The event is open to the press.
NYU president Dr. L. Jay Oliva, who will participate in the event said, "I may not be able to imagine the changes that will occur in politics or economics or science in the years ahead, but I do know that art and music and theatre and all forms of performing arts will exist. They existed a thousand years ago and in all the ages past -- in the hieroglyphics of the pyramids and the drumbeats of Africa, in the psalms and masses of the church, in the erotic dances of Siam and the minuets in the courts of the French kings, in the majesty of Shakespeare and the sadness of Russian lullabies, and in every moment of human history." Dr. Oliva will also bestow NYU's Millennial Awards in the Performing Arts to four others, including several up-and-coming musical theatre composers, who will present recent works.
The additional four award recipients are:
• Jason Robert Brown, composer and lyricist of the award-winning musical Parade; Mr. Brown's song, "Hear My Song", will be performed by Alexandra Carlson, Dayna Gross, Bram Heidinger, and Adam Jacobs, students from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts.
• Adam Guettel, a composer and lyricist who has received the Stephen Sondheim Award, and Obie Award, a Lucille Lortel Award, and an ASCAP New Horizons Award for his work. Mr. Guettel's song, "Hero and Leander", which will be performed by NYU alumnus Matt Perri.
• Michael John LaChiusa, a composer, lyricist and librettist whose works have included Chronicle of Death Foretold, Hello Again, First Lady Suite and Marie Christine, which is now in previews at Lincoln Center's Vivian Beaumont Theatre. Mr. LaChiusa's song, "Tom," will be performed by Jennifer Goode, who is now appearing on Broadway in Les Miserables.
• Mike Reid (composer) and Sarah Schlesinger (lyricist and NYU faculty member), whose collaborations include Different Fields, The Ballad of Little Joe, and In This House. Mr. Reid and Ms. Schlesinger's song, "Bright November Morning," will be performed by NYU student Bob Frisch.
Dr. Oliva's co-hosts for the ceremony will be Stan Martin, the long-time radio host, and Jennifer Goode, an NYU performing arts alumna.
-- By Murdoch McBride