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Sunday, June 13, 2010


Since I'm waiting for the Tony Awards telecast to air on the West Coast, I figure why not write about another amazing theater-related event I recently had the privilege of attending. Yesterday, I attended a benefit concert with Georgia Stitt and Jason Robert Brown where the duo presented and performed their songs as a benefit for the Pasadena Presbyterian Church. Tracy Nicole Chapman, Ty Taylor, Lara Pulver, Allie Trimm and Dan Callaway also performed with JRB & GS.

It had been some time since I had seen JRB in concert and I had never heard Georgia's music live before. Georgia played some songs from her recent off-Broadway show, Mosaic as well as songs from other shows like The Water as well as music from her album, This Ordinary Thursday. What I like about Georgia's music is that her lyrics are intelligent, carefully crafted and her always honest music has a gentle calmness about it. As I was sitting in the sanctuary listening yesterday (and as I am listening to her album now), whether her music is based on a sonnet by Shakespeare or President Obama's inauguration speech (which I absolutely loved - what a great idea) or "My Lifelong Love," there is such diversity and range in what she does.

I think it is safe to say that everyone (including JRB himself) knows how I feel about his music. so I will try to refrain from singing his praises. The highlights of the show for me were a few...hearing Music of Heaven live (with a 20 or 30 person choir to boot was just fantastic) because this song describes the awkwardness of my relationship with religion and hearing it in a church was (for me) even more thought provoking. I also loved hearing the opening number (Old Red Hills of Home) from Parade again but the best was hearing songs I've not heard before like All Things in Time & Caravan of Angels.

I am always intrigued when I have an opportunity to hear composers play their music. There is something so intriguing and yet vulnerable about listening and watching a composer perform their work. Last night was no different and maybe even more intriguing to witness the dynamic between two obviously talented composers who also happened to be married. Both Georgia and JRB have their stylistic differences but it is still really magical to be in the presence of such talented songwriters and performers. I know that sounds cheesy, but it really was a fantastic experience and night of music.

Thank you Georgia Stitt and JRB for a really amazing evening of music last night!

* JRB just published the set list for the show on his blog!


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