Extraordinary vocal performers Patti LuPone, Bryn Terfel, Jacob Collier, David Foster & Katharine McPhee, and Edwin Perez will showcase how human voices transcend time and culture to lift our spirits.
(WASHINGTON)—The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Artistic Advisor-at-Large and 2023 Kennedy Center Honoree Renée Fleming today announce the programming of the 2023–2024 Renée Fleming VOICES series. Presenting an expansive range of vocal performances from many genres and traditions, the seventh series continues to show how human voices are used in a variety of ways to communicate and to lift our spirits.
The series starts with Jacob Collier’s Djesse World Tour, presented together with the National Symphony Orchestra. The five-time Grammy Award® winner performs his original songs with reimagined full orchestration (September 5, 2023). Then, the world-class bass-baritone Sir Bryn Terfel, alongside harpist Hannah Stone and pianist Annabel Thwaite, perform traditional Welsh folk music and songs by notable composers, including Schubert and Ivor Novello. This is a co-production with the Fortas Chamber Music Concerts (November 19, 2023). Sixteen-time Grammy Award®–winning musician, composer, and producer David Foster joins forces with acclaimed singer and television/Broadway star Katharine McPhee to bring an evening of music featuring songs from Chicago, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Josh Groban, Michael Bublé, and McPhee’s biggest songs from American Idol, Smash, and Waitress (February 25, 2024).
Described by People magazine as having “a miracle of a voice,” stage legend Patti LuPone returns with a brand-new show A Life in Notes. Together with her longtime musical director Joseph Thalken, this “personal musical memoir” will celebrate, through songs, her legendary career on Broadway, on screen, and beyond (May 17, 2024). And to cap off the season, Edwin Perez and his band welcome everyone to an outdoor, free salsa music and dance event, co-produced with Dance Sanctuaries. The performance celebrates the salsa dura music and includes a preshow class (June 22, 2024).
Tickets to all Renée Fleming VOICES performances are available now online at kennedy-center.org/subscriptions, and via phone at (202) 416-8500. Groups of 20 or more may contact Kennedy Center Group Sales at (202) 416-8400.
The following description explains why these artists were chosen by Renée Fleming:
Djesse World Tour – Orchestra Edition
Tuesday, September 5, 2023 at 8:00 PM
Kennedy Center Concert Hall
“An utterly original, unique talent, Jacob Collier is poised to become one of the most influential forces in contemporary music. Since launching his genre-defying career on YouTube in 2013, with extraordinary multi-track performances of a musical and vocal complexity difficult to even imagine, he has fearlessly (and enjoyably) followed his astonishing gifts wherever they have led. Singer, songwriter, inventive arranger, and master of a variety of musical instruments, he often gets his audience singing with him, in parts, no less. He gives all of us a deeper understanding of music, and I admire that tremendously.”
Sir Bryn Terfel
Sunday, November 19, 2023 at 2:00 PM
Kennedy Center Concert Hall
“I’m thrilled that my beloved colleague, the great Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel, is coming to the Concert Hall. Both in opera and on the concert stage, Bryn is an absolute force of nature. His once-in-a-generation voice, deep expressive gifts, and musical sensitivity have made performing with him a constant joy. We have sung and recorded together countless times, from a duo musical theater album (Under the Stars) to Mozart’s Don Giovanni. The sheer breadth of his career is amazing, and I know from experience that he is just as charismatic in concert as he is in opera. If you didn’t happen to attend the coronation of King Charles III in May, when Bryn shook the rafters of Westminster Abbey with a Welsh Kyrie, this is your chance to hear this phenomenal artist in person.”
An Intimate Evening with Katharine McPhee and David Foster
Sunday, February 25, 2024 at 8:00 PM
Kennedy Center Concert Hall
“This is just a phenomenally gifted duo, and the fact that they are a couple offstage only adds to the musical synergy. I first saw them perform together during the early months of the pandemic, when they led the way connecting and consoling everyone locked down at home with live performances on Instagram. But their individual careers leading up to that were dazzling. Katharine first made her mark as a finalist on American Idol, and she has since gone from strength to strength in recordings, appearances on Broadway and London’s West End, and starring roles in network television (Smash and Scorpion). And David Foster is a musical legend. Composer, conductor, arranger, producer, instrumentalist, session player—it’s hard to think of anyone who has filled so many roles with such mastery. He has written and collaborated on more mega-hits than I can count, many of which he and Katherine will perform in this Concert Hall event.”
Patti LuPone: A Life in Notes
A personal musical memoir on and off the stage
Friday, May 17, 2024 at 8:00 PM
Kennedy Center Concert Hall
“Patti LuPone represents the pinnacle of achievement as a singing actor, the rare kind of triple threat performer who has helped make the Broadway musical one of our country’s unique cultural treasures. Equally fluent with a script or a score, she has moved with aplomb between theater (both plays and musicals), television, film, and cabaret, all the while putting her own unforgettable stamp on iconic roles from Reno Sweeney to Mama Rose to Mrs. Lovett. Her latest triumph, Joanne in Sondheim’s Company, garnered her third Tony® and second Olivier Award. And her solo concerts are legendary, ever since she first launched her cabaret career with midnight shows at a New York club—incredibly, singing after her Saturday night performances as Broadway’s original Evita! This is an utterly distinctive, powerhouse artist, and I know her show in the Concert Hall will have audiences shouting for encores.”
A Night of Salsa Music and Dance with Edwin Perez
Saturday, June 22, 2024 at 7:30 PM
“I’m fascinated how a unique musical style or sound can spring from a very specific mix of geography, community, and circumstance. Salsa Dura was born in the 1970s, out of Latin American salsa traditions, Cuban descarga jam sessions, and the nightclub scene in New York City, with a strong feeling of social consciousness. The sound brings the instrumentalists into equal prominence with the singer, and allows for extended improvisation, which, like any jazz aficionado, I love. Edwin Perez, with his Salsa Dura band, sits at the head of this tradition. Born in Puerto Rico, he launched his musical career in the Bronx, and his voice has been heard in films, on Broadway, and on television. It will be fantastic to experience his sound at The REACH, in a night of outdoor music and dancing, including a salsa class!”
Artists and performances are subject to change.
ABOUT RENÉE FLEMING VOICES
Renée Fleming VOICES is a concert series at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Curated by world-renowned soprano Renée Fleming, the VOICES series heralds the extraordinary power and vitality of the human voice across a wide range of genres, including Meow Meow, Jamie Barton, Cécile McLorin Salvant, Nellie McKay, Theo Bleckmann, Lawrence Brownlee, Billy Childs, Alan Cumming, Rinde Eckert, Cynthia Erivo, Megan Hilty, Ute Lemper, Jane Monheit, Patina Miller, and Gregory Porter, among others.
“The range of human vocal expression is virtually limitless—there are as many kinds of VOICES as there are kinds of people. My goal for this series at the Kennedy Center is to celebrate the best singing in styles that may be familiar, and also to expose audiences to types of vocal music that might be totally new to them,” says Fleming. “From the classical song recital, to cabaret, bluegrass, rap, and world music, the common thread will be vocalism of exceptional quality or innovation, representing a diverse range of styles.”
The performances offered in Renée Fleming VOICES take full advantage of the Kennedy Center’s wealth of performance spaces. Each concert has been scheduled in a venue with the size and acoustic character that best suits the music; featured performance spaces range from the intimate 160-seat Jazz Club to the expansive 2,465-seat Concert Hall.
For more information, go to https://www.kennedy-center.org/whats-on/festivals-series/renee-fleming-voices/
ABOUT THE JOHN F. KENNEDY CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts is America’s living memorial to President John F. Kennedy, attracting millions of visitors each year to more than 2,000 performances, events, and exhibits. With its artistic affiliates, the National Symphony Orchestra and Washington National Opera, the nation’s busiest performing arts center is dedicated to providing world-class art, powerful education, and outstanding memorial experiences to the broadest possible constituency. Across all its offerings, the Kennedy Center is committed to increasing accessible, inclusive opportunities for all people to participate in, and learn through the arts, including more than 400 free performances each year and a variety of Specially Priced Ticket programs for students, seniors, persons with disabilities, and others.
To learn more about the Kennedy Center, please visit kennedy-center.org.