PHILADELPHIA With a career as diverse as the themes he has written, John Williams is considered by many to be our times musical equivalent to Bach and Beethoven.
For no one writes as many recognizable movie scores and TV theme songs as Williams.
His success and talent will be recognized this weekend as the Philly Pops performs a salute with The Magical Music of John Williams at Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center, with shows Friday through Sunday.
Maestro Michael Krajewski will lead the Philly Pops as they take audiences on a journey through the great music of many popular movies.
The Pops Festival Chorus will sing several selections. Guests will be surprised during the concert by local Star Wars enthusiasts who are members of the 501st Legion, Garrison Carida, the worlds largest costuming organization, in character as Darth Vader, Chewbacca, R2D3, C3PO, and Storm Troopers.
The career of Williams, the composer, conductor and pianist, has spanned over six decades. Williams has won five Academy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, seven British Academy Film Awards and 21 Grammy Awards. With 49 Academy Award nominations, he is the second most-nominated person, after Walt Disney. Many people are surprised about the diversity of Williams catalogue of music as it also includes the well-known calypso-based theme song to Gilligans Island, the popular television show, the theme music for four Olympic Games, NBC Sunday Night Football, the NBC Nightly News, the television series Lost in Space and Land of the Giants. Williams was inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame in 2000, and was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2004.
After The Magical Music of John Williams, the 2014 season ends with a concert series from May 16 to 18, 2014 entitled Sixties Hits Featuring The Midtown Men, who are the four original stars of Broadways Jersey Boys.
IF YOU GO: The Magical Music of John Williams concerts are Friday, April 4 (8 p.m.), and Saturday, April 5 and Sunday, April 6 (3 p.m.) in Verizon Hall at The Kimmel Center of the Performing Arts, 300 S. Broad St. Tickets range in price from $30 to $134 and may be purchased through phillypops.org or by phone at 215-893-1999.
The movies are always a great focus for a POPS concert as everyone knows music provides the transcending themes that evoke emotion and excitement as soon as a film begins. Krajewski has conducted many concerts with these popular songs and scores and knows the great popularity of the genius of John Williams. He said, John Williams music is universally known because of its association with so many highly revered movies. Many of the musical themes like those from Jaws, Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark, are iconic and firmly embedded in peoples minds. The real joy of this concert is hearing these famous themes come to life, live and in person, by the skilled musicians of the Philly POPS.