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Gold Company to perform at Chicago pops concert

May 13, 2008

KALAMAZOO--It's not often you're invited to perform with a high-profile orchestra on the same bill as a legendary vocalist who's sold millions of records.

But when you're a member of Gold Company, Western Michigan University's award-winning vocal jazz ensemble, you expect the unexpected.

Gold Company has been invited to perform with the Chicagoland Pops Orchestra in a concert featuring Johnny Mathis Saturday, May 31, in the Rosemont Theatre in Rosemont, Ill. WMU's globe-trotting, singing-and-instrumental group will sing five pieces with the orchestra, some of them plucked from the repertoire that people know Gold Company for, including "Route 66," "Georgia on My Mind," "It Had to be You" and "My Country Tis of Thee," plus some a capella selections.

There's a possibility Gold Company members may sing background vocals for Mathis himself. That won't be determined until the day of the concert and Mathis has a chance to check Gold Company out for himself.

Regardless, this is a great opportunity for Gold Company, says Dr. Stephen Zegree, the WMU Bobby McFerrin professor of jazz. More than 3,000 tickets have already been sold for the concert.

The Chicagoland Pops Orchestra is comprised of some of the Chicago area's most talented and experienced musicians and features world-class artists during its entire season. Stretching the boundaries of the traditional symphony orchestra, the CPO performs a wide variety of popular, classical and contemporary works for large audiences.

"We feel greatly honored and privileged to have been invited to perform with The Chicagoland Pops Orchestra," Zegree says. "This is a wonderful, professional opportunity for the members of Gold Company, and we look forward to sharing our music and spreading the name of Western Michigan University to a wider audience."

Go to www.chicagolandpops.com for more information.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, (269) 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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