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New York Pops come to Forest Hills

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The New York Pops are shimmying over to the Forest Hills Stadium this summer with thousands of free tickets for students in the area.

The Pops recently announced that the stadium at the West Side Tennis Club would host its summer performances this year and for many summers to come. They are planning two shows in August. “The New York Pops is proud to call the Forest Hills Stadium its new summer home,” Steve Reineke, the orchestra’s music director and conductor, said.

“New York Pops concerts are all about having fun,” he said. “I’m so happy to have such a great venue in New York City.”

The orchestera’s new outdoor summer home will give them a chance to get a little fresh air, Reineke said, since the orchestra plays indoors, at Carnegie Hall, during most of the year.

The Pops will perform their first Forest Hills show Aug. 6 with Tony Award winner Sutton Foster, who will be bringing a Broadway-style performance to the outdoor stage.

The next day the Orgeon-based group Pink Martini will join the orchestra “for a crazy and wild performance,” Reineke said.

At Carnegie Hall, the Pops runs a program that offers tickets to 100 students for each concert. The Forest Hills program will give out more than 1,000 tickets per concert for Queens kids. The stadium has more than 12,000 seats.

“This shows a true commitment to the community and to education,” said Deborah Dillingham, a representative for the Panel for Educational Policy, during an event at the stadium June 18.

The stadium, once the home of the U.S. Open before it moved to Flushing, used to hold regular musical performances, including visits from Jimi Hendrix and the Rolling Stones.

After falling into disuse for many years, the stadium has recently reopened with performances by The Who, Mumford & Sons and Van Morrison. Upcoming performances this summer include shows by James Taylor (Aug. 4), Santana (Aug. 14) and Alabama Shakes with Drive-By Truckers (Aug. 19).

“Our stadium has been experiencing a revival,” said Roland Meier, president of the West Side Tennis Club. “We rocked the neighborhood and we’re doing it again.”

Reach reporter Eric Jankiewicz by e-mail at ejankiewicz@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4564.

Posted 12:00 am, June 29, 2015
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