DSO's PNC Pops Series kicks off with "Queens of Soul," October 11-13

- Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik will conduct; DSO will perform with guest vocalists Shayna Steele, Kelly Levesque, and Brie Cassil

- Veterans and active military members can access discounted $10 tickets to two performances

Detroit, (September 26, 2019) – The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) kicks off its 2019-2020 PNC Pops Series with Queens of Soul, a symphonic celebration of soul and R&B divas like Aretha Franklin, Tina Turner, Whitney Houston, Patti LaBelle, Alicia Keys, and more.

Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik—who also arranged and co-created the show—will conduct the DSO and guest vocalists Shayna Steele, Kelly Levesque, and Brie Cassil.

The concerts take place Friday, October 11 at 10:45 a.m. and 8 p.m., Saturday, October 12 at 8 p.m., and Sunday, October 13 at 3 p.m. at Orchestra Hall, within Midtown Detroit’s Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center.

In 2017, the DSO’s pops programming took on a fresh title: the PNC Pops Series, thanks to the generous support of PNC Bank. “This is a terrific series that showcases both the DSO and a wide variety of popular music, said Ric DeVore, PNC regional president for Detroit and Southeast Michigan. “That combination is sure to put a smile on the faces of everyone who attends the concerts.”

Thanks to a generous grant from the FCA Foundation, the charitable arm of North American automaker FCA US, the DSO welcomes military veterans, active military, and their families to access discounted tickets for the 8 p.m. performance on Friday, October 11 and the 3 p.m. performance on Sunday, October 13. See below for more information about the ticket discount. The FCA Foundation and the DSO thank our veterans and active military members for their service.

About Jeff Tyzik

Grammy Award winner Jeff Tyzik is one of America’s most innovative and sought-after pops conductors. Tyzik is recognized for his brilliant arrangements, original programming, and engaging rapport with audiences of all ages. In addition to his role as Principal Pops Conductor of the DSO, Tyzik holds The Dot and Paul Mason Principal Pops Conductor’s Podium at the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and also serves as principal pops conductor of the Oregon Symphony, Florida Orchestra, and Rochester Philharmonic – a post he has held for 23 seasons.

Frequently invited as a guest conduc­tor, Tyzik has appeared with the Boston Pops, Cincinnati Pops, Milwaukee Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Toronto Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and Royal Scottish National Orchestra. In May 2007, the Harmonia Mundi label released his recording of works by Gershwin with pianist Jon Nakamatsu and the RPO, which stayed in the Top 10 on the Billboard classical chart for over three months. Alex Ross of the New Yorker called it “one of the snappiest Gershwin discs in years.”

Committed to performing music of all genres, Tyzik has collaborated with such diverse artists as Megan Hilty, Chris Botti, Matthew Morrison, Wynonna Judd, Tony Bennett, Art Garfunkel, Dawn Upshaw, Marilyn Horne, Arturo Sandoval, The Chieftains, Mark O’Connor, Doc Severinsen, and John Pizzarelli. He has created numerous original programs that include the great­est music from jazz and classical to Motown, Broadway, film, dance, Latin, and swing. Tyzik holds Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the Eastman School of Music.

About Shayna Steele

Schooled in jazz by her godfather and gospel by her choir director (the Grammy-nominated Michael McElroy), Shayna Steele’s first musical stint was an appearance on Ed McMahon’s Star Search when she was 15 years old.

Since then, she’s collaborated with countless artists – George Clinton, Bette Midler, John Legend, Snarky Puppy, Queen Latifah, Rihanna, and many more – and released her own music, begin­ning with I’ll Be Anything, a collaboration with longtime friend David Cook. Her latest album is Watch Me Fly, released this spring on Membran.

With rave reviews from every corner of the world, she’s packed her schedule: touring with her band, appearing on TV (from late night shows to the Grammy Awards), performing on Broadway, and giving private lessons to the next gener­ation of singers.

About Kelly Levesque

Kelly Levesque is a New York-based singer-songwriter who has performed as a soloist at prestigious venues around the world, including Royal Albert Hall, the Sydney Opera House, the Kennedy Center, and more. She is also an intrepid collabo­rator, sharing the stage with the likes of Sting, Andrea Bocelli, Smokey Robinson, and Patti LaBelle. Levesque has been fortunate to perform for inter­national royalty, four United States presidents, and Pope Benedict XVI.

Levesque has performed on two recordings that hit the Top 5 of the Billboard Classical Crossover Albums chart. Her song “Never Forever” was released with the support of the Miss America Organization and Safe Horizon to raise awareness and money for domestic violence victims. She wrote “I Won’t Let You Down” for the KNOWAutism Foundation to benefit chil­dren and families who are affected by autism.

About Brie Cassil

Brie Cassil is a New York-based singer, actress, and composer. Her theater credits include productions like Beauty and the Beast, Urinetown, Rent, The Marvelous Wonderettes, and the new rock musical Chix. She has also performed on the opera stage, fronted the rock band Rebel, and led musical theater work­shops overseas.

Ticket Information

Tickets for Queens of Soul begin at $24 and can be purchased at dso.org, by calling (313) 576-5111, or in-person at the Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center Box Office (3711 Woodward Ave., Detroit).

Groups of 10 or more can save up to 30% on the price of a single ticket for most DSO concerts. For more information, contact Group Sales Manager Jim Sabatella at (313) 576-5130 or jsabatella@dso.org.

Veterans, active military, and their families may use the code HEROES1920 to unlock $10 tickets for the 8 p.m. concert on Friday, October 11 and the 3 p.m. concert on Sunday, October 13. The code can be used at dso.org or by calling the Box Office at (313) 576-5111.

About the DSO

The most accessible orchestra on the planet, the acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra is known for trailblazing performances, collaborations with the world’s foremost musical artists, and a deep connection to its city. As a community-supported orchestra, generous giving by individuals and institutions at all levels drives the continued success and growth of the institution. Conductor Leonard Slatkin, who recently concluded an acclaimed decade-long tenure at the helm, now serves as the DSO’s Music Director Laureate, endowed by the Kresge Foundation. Celebrated conductor, arranger, and trumpeter Jeff Tyzik is the orchestra’s Principal Pops Conductor, while the outstanding trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard holds the Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Jazz Creative Director Chair. Making its home at historic Orchestra Hall within the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, the DSO offers a performance schedule that features Classical, PNC Pops, Paradise Jazz, and Young People’s Family Concert series. One of America’s most acoustically perfect concert halls, Orchestra Hall celebrates its centennial in 2019-2020. In addition, the DSO presents the William Davidson Neighborhood Concert Series in seven metro area venues, as well as a robust schedule of eclectic multi-genre performances in its mid-size venue The Cube, constructed and curated with support from Peter D. & Julie F. Cummings. A dedication to broadcast innovation began in 1922, when the DSO became the first orchestra in the world to present a radio broadcast and continues today with the free Live from Orchestra Hall webcast series, which also reaches tens of thousands of children with the Classroom Edition expansion. With growing attendance and unwavering philanthropic support from the people of Detroit, the DSO actively pursues a mission to embrace and inspire individuals, families, and communities through unsurpassed musical experiences.