The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

December 2, 2009

Festive entertainment | 'American Idol' finalists in concert at Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center


By TOM LAVIS

TLAVIS@TRIBDEM.COM

The “American Idol” stars will take the stage at the Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center to treat the audience to festive Christmas music.

It’s part of the “American Stars in Concert for the Holidays” tour that features a combination of four of the Top 12 finalists from seasons one through eight.

Four “Idol” performers will present solo, duet and ensemble performances at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 10 at the arts center, 450 Schoolhouse Road in Richland Township.

“American Idol” finalists Michael Sarver, Alexis Grace, David Hernandez and Gina Glocksen will star on the tour, which recently launched in Lakeland, Fla., and will make Johns-town its fifth stop on a 12-city tour.

“This is a fresh and lively concert,” said Scott Stander, the show’s producer.

“The show is a chance for the audience to experience an intimacy with the stars they have watched on TV.”

“American Idol” is a reality competition to find solo musical talent.

The audience will get a chance to relive their favorite former “Idol” moments as the artists perform an array of holiday hits.

The first half of the show will be Christmas music.

During the second portion of the show, the singers will present more contemporary songs that reflect where their careers are going.

“They will be doing more of their original songs or selections from their latest individual CD releases,” Stander said.

“The audience will get a good sense of where each performer is in their own career and what they are doing now.”

Stander said the Christmas theme will resume to close the show.

Sarver, a Texan who worked as a roughneck on an oil rig, was one of the 13 finalists on the eighth season of “American Idol.”

Sarver finished in 10th place and established himself as a talented singer with a big heart and a lot of potential.

Grace, a pint-sized singer with a big, soulful voice, brought her down-home Memphis roots to the “Idol” stage where she finished 11th on season eight.

Hernandez made it into the Top 12, but was the first to go home in season seven.

He started singing at age 6, starring in musicals and performing with various theater companies throughout Arizona.

When he reached 15, he began writing original music and recording his material.

Glocksen was the ninth-place finisher on the sixth season of “American Idol.”

Although Glocksen was often referred to as the “rocker chick,” her musical influences and abilities range beyond the realm of rock.

“This is a show for young and old as well as great family entertainment,” Stander said.

Given the age of the performers, the concert promises to be a fast-paced, upbeat production.

Michael Orland, a pianist, arranger and associate music director on “American Idol,” will serve as the production’s musical director.

“The stars are backed up by a quartet of wonderful musicians,” Stander said.

Don’t expect a lot of elaborate sets or a myriad of costume changes in this production.

“This isn’t a big production show,” Stander said.

“Our performers dress hip-casual and we would hope the audience does the same. It’s a nice, relaxing evening of festive entertainment.”

Tickets are $25, $33 and $35.

Information: 269-7200 or (800) 846-2787.



Songs of season

What: “American Stars in Concert for the Holidays.”

Where: Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center, 450 Schoolhouse Road, Richland Township.

When 7:30 p.m. Dec. 10.

Tickets: Call 269-7200, (800) 846-2787 or visit www.upjarts.com.

Cost: $25, $33 and $35.