Broadway’s ‘Finding Neverland’ stars to join Mormon Tabernacle Choir for Pioneer Day concert


Broadway stars Matthew Morrison and Laura Michelle Kelly will headline the Pioneer Day concert on Temple Square. (Photo courtesy of LDS Church)

Broadway stars Matthew Morrison and Laura Michelle Kelly will headline the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s annual Pioneer Day concert, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir announced Thursday morning.

The annual concert, “Music for a Summer Evening,” features the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square. With the special guests, the Broadway-themed concert will be held on Friday and Saturday, July 20 and 21, at 8 p.m. in the Conference Center.

Morrison and Kelly, who played opposite each other in the 2015 cast of the Broadway musical, “Finding Neverland,” will be reunited for the performance. In the musical, Morrison played J. M. Barrie opposite Kelly, who appeared as Sylvia Llewelyn Davies.

“Matthew Morrison and Laura Michelle Kelly are extraordinary performers who have a dynamic chemistry onstage that will delight our audiences,” said Mormon Tabernacle Choir President Ron Jarrett in a press release. “We know they will bring down the house when they perform with the Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square!”

Morrison is an actor, singer and dancer with a background in both live theater and television. He has been nominated for Tony, Emmy, and Golden Globe Awards. He is most well-known to television audiences as Mr. Schuester in the musical comedy series “Glee.” In 2012, Morrison hosted and narrated the PBS special entitled “Oscar Hammerstein II—Out of My Dreams,” which focused on the Broadway producer’s life and career.

Kelly is a Laurence Olivier Award-winning actress and singer for her star-making performance as Mary Poppins in the London stage production. Kelly has performed in numerous London and Broadway musical productions as well as on radio and TV and in concert appearances at Royal Albert Hall, Hampton Court Palace, the Royal Opera House and Buckingham Palace.

Oscar “Andy” Hammerstein III, grandson of the famed lyricist and music theater producer Oscar Hammerstein II, will narrate the Pioneer Day concert. (Photo by Ron Rinaldi)

Both Morrison and Kelly will also appear on the Sunday, July 22, Music and the Spoken Word broadcast. There are no tickets required for this performance, but attendees should be seated by 9:15 a.m. for the 9:30 a.m. performance in the Conference Center.

To narrate the 2018 concert, Oscar “Andy” Hammerstein III, grandson of the famed lyricist and music theater producer Oscar Hammerstein II, will return to the Conference Center. Hammerstein narrated the Choir and Orchestra’s “Music: It Runs in the Family” at the 2017 RootsTech concert.

The concert will be conducted by Mack Wilberg, music director of the Choir, and Ryan Murphy, associate music director.

Past Pioneer Day concerts have featured artists including Alex Boyé (2017), The King’s Singers (2016), Laura Osnes (2015), Santino Fontana (2014), Nathan Pacheco and Lindsey Stirling (2013), Katherine Jenkins (2012), and Linda Eder and Brian Stokes Mitchell (2011).

While tickets to the Pioneer Day concert are free, they are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis beginning Tuesday, June 5, 2018 at 10 a.m. MDT. Tickets can be ordered at or by phone at 801-570-0080. Patrons can request up to four tickets. Admission is open to those ages eight and older.

For people who don’t secure tickets to the concert, the concert will be live streamed on at 8 p.m. MDT on Saturday, July 21. It will also be carried live over the Church satellite system and aired on BYU Television.

Rebecca Lane

While her first language is sarcasm, Rebecca dabbles in English and Russian to achieve her lifelong dream of being a journalist. A BYU sports fan, reading enthusiast and wannabe world traveler, Rebecca is a Colorado transplant that is convinced Colorado's mountains are much larger than the many Utah County peaks. Rebecca manages for Bennett Communications. Follow her on Twitter @rebeccalane.

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