POPS on Independence 2019 | The Philly Pops

POPS on Independence 2019

Todd Ellison, Conductor

Independence Hall

520 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
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03 July 2019
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Todd Ellison, Music Director
Susan Egan, vocalist
The Voices of the POPS

A Philly POPS Salute Series performance honoring our nation's traditions, values, and commitment to service. 

Your sponsorship or donation will help to offset the cost of hosting the veterans, military, and first responders at Salute Series events throughout the year.

The Philly POPS continues its 40-year tradition of performance in front of Independence Hall in POPS on Independence. Featuring The Voices of the POPS and the full 65-piece POPS orchestra, this free, patriotic celebration of America's birthday is part of Wawa Welcome America, the nation's largest, free 4th of July festival.

With the stunning backdrop of Independence Hall, Music Director Todd Ellison will conduct the POPS in a patriotic show, mixing Great American Songbook classics with today’s popular music. POPS on Independence has become a Philadelphia tradition, enjoyed by 15,000 locals and visitors each year. 

The POPS will be joined by Disney Broadway sensation Susan Egan. Susan played Belle in the original Broadway production of Beauty and the Beast (for which she received Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations), was the voice of Megara in the movie Hercules, has appeared in many hit TV shows, and has released seven solo albums. POPS fans will remember Susan’s powerful, energetic performance in 2018’s Best of Broadway concert series.

This performance is part of The Philly POPS Salute Series, honoring our nation's traditions, values, and commitment to service. Your sponsorship or donation will help to offset the cost of hosting the veterans, military, and first responders at Salute Series events throughout the year.

Comcast NBCUniversal is the Presenting Sponsor of The Philly POPS Salute Series. These free celebrations of community and tradition, which honor our shared commitment to service on holidays of American tradition, also rely on the generous support of Major Sponsors like Bank of America, Archer Law, Macys, Visit Philly, and Drs. John* (Jack) and Pina Templeton, as well as grants through partnership with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the City of Philadelphia.

Guest Artists

Todd Ellison, Conductor


Hailed by The New York Times as one of “Broadway’s Electric Conductors,” Ellison is one of the most accomplished and sought-after music director/composers working today.

Currently the Music Supervisor/Conductor/arranger of the new Broadway-bound musical Roman Holiday, he is also the composer of the award-winning new musical The Black and White Ball with Stephen Cole, as well as The Canterville Hotel with Brendan Cull. He also composed the songs “The Long Way” for Emily Skinner, and “Gettin’ Nowhere Fast” for Guy Haines.

He is currently the Music Supervisor of An American in Paris at the Dominion Theater in London’s West End, as well as 42nd Street at the Drury Lane Theater.

His Broadway credits include Michel Legrand’s Amour, Monty Python’s Spamalot (Best Musical Tony Award), La Cage aux Folles (Best Musical Revival Tony Award), 42nd Street (Best Revival Tony Award ), Elton John’s Lestat, Annie, The Wild Party, On the Town, Once Upon a Mattress (starring Sarah Jessica Parker), How To Succeed (starring Matthew Broderick), She Loves Me, Taller than a Dwarf and A Class Act.

He was the music director of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular at the famed Radio City Music Hall for several seasons.

As Marvin Hamlisch’s music director, Ellison worked with him on his productions of Ballroom and The Nutty Professor directed by Jerry Lewis.

For City Center’s Encores!, he conducted their acclaimed version of On The Town and The Bandwagon.

Internationally, he has conducted at the Vienna Konzerthaus with Dawn Upshaw and Jerry Hadley, The Dublin Film Orchestra, Radio City Christmas Spectacular (Mexico City), World Science Festival at Lincoln Center, Cole Porter’s Jubilee at Carnegie Hall, the Pittsburgh Symphony, San Diego Symphony, The Philly POPS, Nashville Symphony, Long Beach Symphony, New Haven, New Jersey, and York Symphonies.

He has conducted more than 20 albums including the Grammy Award-winning cast albums of his shows. He has accompanied such stars as Beyoncé, Meryl Streep, Mike Nichols, Nicole Kidman, Barry Manilow, Jane Lynch, Bea Arthur, David Hyde Pierce, Tracey Ullman, and Kelsey Grammar.

Born in Essex, Connecticut, Ellison began his piano lessons at age 6 and is a graduate of Boston University School of Music with a degree in piano performance.

Susan Egan, vocalist


Susan Egan has made powerful impressions in theatre, film, television and music. As a Broadway actress, she received Tony Award® and Drama Desk® nominations for “Best Actress” as Broadway’s original “Belle” in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, headlined as Thoroughly Modern Millie, won critical acclaim as “Sally Bowles” in Cabaret, originated the leading roles in Triumph of Love and State Fair, and starred alongside Carol Burnett in Putting It Together at the Mark Taper Forum and Tommy Tune in the national tour of Bye, Bye Birdie

She is best known to animation fans as “Rose Quartz/Pink Diamond” on Cartoon Network’s hit Steven Universe, sassy “Megara” in Disney’s Hercules, “Lin” in the Academy Award-winning Spirited Away,  “Gina” in Porco Rosso, “Angel” in Lady and the Tramp II, and more. She’s been seen on film in 13 Going on 30, Gotta Kick It Up for the Disney Channel, and many award-winning indies, and spent two seasons on WB’s Nikki and guest-starred on Modern Family, House, Numbers, NYPD Blue, Arli$$, Drew Carey, Party of Five, Great Performances, and others.

Egan has over 400 solo concert credits with symphonies worldwide, including concerts at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the Hollywood Bowl, and has more than 40 recordings credits with 7 solo CDs. In 2018, Egan formed a company with fellow Broadway stars Laura Osnes and Courtney Reed, and musical director Benjamin Rauhala – they are currently touring their award-winning concert, Broadway Princess Party, reaching theatre and cosplaying fans in kingdoms near and far. Susan is an accomplished master teacher in music performance, obsessive gardener, happy wife, and mom to two daughters… who have no interest in princesses.

Voices of the POPS


The Voices of the POPS is a vocal ensemble that often accompanies the Philly POPS orchestra and adds to the rich sound of concerts.

Since its debut in 2000, The Voices of the POPS has become an integral part of the POPS, performing a wide range of music at concerts. This multi-talented group adds to the versatile orchestra by providing a new dimension to the already imaginative arrangements. The animated vocal element brings lyrics and melody to life against the rich tapestries of the orchestra's sound. 

The ensemble regularly performs with the POPS at Salute Series performances, including Memorial Salute and POPS on Independence, as well as in traditional concert hall shows.

Consisting of professional performers and led by choral director Jeff Kern, Head of the Vocal Division at the University of the Arts, The Voices strives for excellence in the performance of a broad repertoire. The ensemble is a twelve voice professional choir performing an extensive array of theatrical, operatic, and choral repertoire.

Salute Series Presenting Sponsor