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Sunday, November 9, 2014

Winter, 2014-2015

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The Fred Barton Blog 

Fred Barton's symphony arrangements are played regularly by the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall and major symphonies around the country. On Broadway and national tour, Fred conducted Anthony Quinn in Zorba, Hal Prince’s production of Cabaret, Cy Coleman’s City Of Angels and Robert Goulet in Camelot; he played in the pit of Cy Coleman’s The Will Rogers Follies, Tommy Tune’s revival of Grease, the 1992 revival of Guys & Dolls, and off-Broadway’s Ruthless.  Fred is currently co-librettist, musical supervisor and arranger for the Broadway-bound Harold Arlen musical One For My Baby.  Fred debuted in New York as the original arranger/pianist for Forbidden Broadway.  He created the book, music and lyrics for his one-man show Miss Gulch Returns! (Back Stage Bistro Award), which is now being performed at theaters nationwide; he wrote book, music and lyrics for The Two Svengalis, contributed songs to the off-Broadway productions Whoop-Dee-Doo! and Burly-Q, and wrote music and lyrics for Universal’s Creature From The Black Lagoon.   Fred’s TV credits as composer and arranger include HBO's "Cathouse: The Musical," OliviaWonder Pets!, and The Magic School Bus (Emmy Award.)  He has produced and arranged numerous CDs.  Fred’s favorite activity is to present his concerts of classic show music with Broadway headliners and the Fred Barton Orchestra in Pace University’s American Showstoppers series.


SHEET MUSIC for my songs is now available on www.musicnotes.com.  This makes it faster, cheaper, and more convenient for you to get sheet music for my best songs. "Pour Me A Man" and "Pour Me A Man: Encore" and a number of others are now available, and additional songs will be added in the near future.

My sell-out concert series, "American Showstoppers with the Fred Barton Orchestra" at Pace University's Michael Schimmel Theatre in NYC, just had another landmark triumph with my tribute to Cy Coleman – with whom I had the honor and pleasure of working on four of his productions.  Below are are highlights of Act One and Act Two, featuring an incredible cast and my incredible musicians.



My next "American Showstoppers" concert will be devoted to the music of Irving Berlin, and will expand to two performances: March 6 at the Michael Schimmel Center, and March 7 at the the Leon Goldstein PAC at Kingsborough, Brooklyn.  If you love classic Broadway show music, performed by house-bringer-downer performers of the old school, get tickets early:



My latest CD – singer Jesse Luttrell's debut, singing 6 show tunes and standards with the Fred Barton Broadway Band – continues to gain worldwide fans on internet radio and through iTunes, Amazon, and CD Baby.  I arranged, orchestrated, and produced, and we recorded at the fabled Nola Recording Studios in NYC; we were the last recording session at the historic studio before it closed its doors.  Several tracks are the first full orchestrated versions available.  You can download at i-Tunes and other outlets, or buy the physical CD at Amazon and CD Baby.






I'm currently completing a large list of symphonic Pops orchestrations, including new arrangements and orchestrations for the Oklahoma City Philharmonic Yuletide concert, starring Tony-winner Beth Leavel under the baton of resident conductor Joel Levine.

Broadway and TV star Megan Hilty continues to sing my orchestrations in her symphony dates around the country, as does Broadway and TV star Jason Alexander.  New York Pops conductor Steven Reineke continues to conduct my Pops arrangements in his appearances with symphony orchestras all over the country. 

Here's a sample:  "Have Yourself A Merry Little Chistmas," which I created for Tony DeSare's Christmas concerts with the Naples Philharmonic and Jacksonville Symphony – click to hear:




My theatre piece MISS GULCH RETURNS! gets its latest production in 2015 in Palm Springs, at the Pearl McManus Theatre.  The show celebrated its 30th Anniversary with a fine new production in New Orleans, under the auspices of the Running With Scissors Theatre Company, garnering its customary rave reviews:  "An inventive work that is consistently surprising, delivering nuance and honest substance.  These are smartly written tunes with internal rhyme schemes that would challenge even Stephen Sondheim.  Most Broadway scores pale in comparison to the wittiness of Barton's score."  (New Orleans Times-Picayune). 

Some other recent events:

"ONE FOR MY BABY," the new Harold Arlen musical for which I provided arrangements and co-wrote the book, got a nice write-up as it continues to wend its way inexorably to Broadway (a London production is in the works):  Read here

"THE MAGIC SCHOOLBUS," the Emmy-Award-winning TV series starring Lily Tomlin, with music by Peter Lurye and Fred Barton, is now available on Netflix and the series has been announced for a "reboot" with new episodes coming down the pipeline.

Jack Everly continues to conduct dozens of my arrangements and orchestrations in his concerts around the country.

Meanwhile, my TV shows continue to air for kids of drastically different ages: look for "Wonder Pets!" on Nick Jr., and "Cathouse: The Musical" on HBO, as well as "The Magic Schoolbus" if you're in various countries overseas.