Kristin Chenoweth wows crowd at Chicago Symphony Orchestra benefit

The League of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association (CSOA) presented its 27th annual Corporate Night Benefit on June 20, this year featuring special guest artist, small but mighty vocal powerhouse Kristin Chenoweth. This Tony and Emmy Award-winning artist performed with members of the CSO, led by conductor Mary-Mitchell Campbell before a crowd of 2,000, including 150 Chicago area music teachers and students whose admission was underwritten by Corporate Night sponsors.

The event was co-chaired by CSOA trustee Thomas F. O’Toole (United Airlines CMO) and Barbara Zutovsky (League of the CSOA) and included dinner in multiple event spaces-- the historic Grainger Ballroom, Thomas Club (with its dramatic views of Michigan Avenue) and Buntrock Hall as well as Tesori restaurant. Elegant floral and décor designs were created by Virginia Wolff and featured regal shades of gold and purple linens accented with chartreuse hydrangeas and Ecuadorian roses, Mokara orchids and white Calla lilies with aspidistra leaves.

Following dinner, guests joined concertgoers in Orchestra Hall for the evening’s program that opened with members of the CSO performing Symphonic Impressions from The Music Man. The program continued with a full set of Chenoweth’s memorable hits from stage and screen including “Popular” from Wicked, “Over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz and “Danced All Night” from My Fair Lady.  Chenoweth also performed a surprise duet with Deerfield native Brittany Smithson.

Chenoweth’s remarkable career spans film, television, stage and concert appearances. Her notable Broadway credits include originating the role of Glinda in Wicked, which earned her a Tony Award nomination and a Tony Award winning portrayal of Sally in You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown. Recent Broadway credits include her widely acclaimed portrayal of glamorous film star, Lily Garland in Roundabout Theatre Company’s On the Twentieth Century.

Corporate Night 2016 raised more than $825,000 for the CSOA's artistic and educational programs. For the past 27 years, popular artists who joined members of the CSO on stage for this benefit include Dave Brubeck, Elvis Costello, Melissa Etheridge, Michael Feinstein, Herbie Hancock, Audra McDonald, Sarah McLachlan, Dianne Reeves, Sting, Frankie Vallli and the Four Seasons and Nancy Wilson.

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