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9/13/2013 6:00:00 AM
Gee, Gershwin! PCA season gets off the ground with an American classic
Courtesy photos
Mac Frampton, Alexis Hazell and Earl Hazell (not shown) are the driving forces in Prescott Center for the Arts “Gee, Gershwin.”
Courtesy photos
Mac Frampton, Alexis Hazell and Earl Hazell (not shown) are the driving forces in Prescott Center for the Arts “Gee, Gershwin.”
By Tamara Sone

PRESCOTT - The Prescott Center for the Arts (PCA) is set to kick off its 2013-14 season with the iconic sounds of George Gershwin with Gee, Gershwin! at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18 on the center's main stage.

The show will feature the vocal sounds of Earl and Alexis Hazell from Phoenix alongside award winning musician Mac Frampton on the piano.

"We've hosted the Hazells several times here with great success," PCA Executive Director Jon Meyer said. "They are both gifted vocalist, and, as with Mr. Frampton, are completely professional and a pleasure to listen to."

Frampton, who lives in Atlanta, Ga., is scheduled to perform several solo pieces, including the iconic Gershwin tune "Rhapsody in Blue", Meyer said.

"I've played so much Gershwin over my career that I feel like I know the man," Frampton said. "I do consider George Gershwin to be America's greatest composer of this style of music."

Frampton has played more than 3,000 concerts across the U.S., Canada, South America, Europe and the Middle East over the past 24 years. He has collaborated with a variety of entertainers such as Bill Cosby, Roberta Flack, Victor Borge and The Fifth Dimension.

"I'm no stranger to Prescott; I've been on the Yavapai College series about three times over the years," Frampton said. "But, it's been quite a while since I've been to Prescott. I love the area."

In addition to recording 22 albums, Frampton has produced several revues and Broadway shows. In 1995, he founded The Hollywood Hills Orchestra, a 16-piece ensemble dedicated to performing cinematic music.

The Hazells, both trained opera singers, have performed with the Arizona Opera, Phoenix Opera, Southern Arizona Symphony Orchestra as well as other operas across the nation and around the world.

"We have been wanting to get together with Mac for some time. This is going to be a lot of fun for us," Earl Hazell said. "Mac and I have been going back and forth trying to figure out which tunes we'd like to do."

Some of the compositions the trio is set to perform are "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off", "They All Laughed" and "Our Love is Here to Stay", Hazell said.

Proceeds from the show will benefit the PCA Youth Scholarship Program. The scholarship program has been helping students with their education costs for more than 30 years. Proceeds will also help pay for cash prizes for local performers and visual artists.

In addition to the concert, attendees can add on a specially priced dinner at Murphy's Restaurant, 201 N. Cortez Street.

The dinner is $30 per person for evening performances. The price includes a non-alcoholic beverage, dessert, tax and tip. Dinner service begins at 4 p.m., however, diners may arrive at any time for their meal.

Those who already have tickets for the concert can add on the dinner special by calling the box office. Reservations for the special are available through the PCA only.

"No one should miss this concert; it's a great date night," Meyer said. "Anyone taking voice or piano lessons should attend the concert for inspiration and to hear professionals at work."

Follow Tamara Sone on Twitter @PDCtsone

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Reader Comments

Posted: Thursday, September 19, 2013
Article comment by: Sharon Carlin

Absolutely fabulous concert!!!!! Marc Frampton's command of the piano is outstanding, and the Hazell's voices are unforgettable. If you missed this, you missed the best there is....

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