Heather Headley's Broadway My Way | The Philly Pops

Heather Headley's Broadway My Way

Ron Colvard, Conductor

Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center for Performing Arts

300 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
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12 October 2018
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Heather Headley, vocalist

Hugh Panaro, vocalist

The Philly POPS BIG Band

Tony and Grammy winner, R&B hitmaker, and international singing sensation Heather Headley comes to Philadelphia for a one-night-only show with The Philly POPS BIG Band at the Kimmel Center.

Heather is the original Nala from The Lion King on Broadway, the Tony-winning star of Aida and the Laurence Olivier Award nominee for her star turn in ​The Bodyguard musical. She’s a Grammy winner and Billboard chart topper for her R&B and Gospel albums. She has recently toured with Andrea Bocelli — POPS audiences saw her last December at the Wells Fargo Center.

Heather also performed at July 3’s POPS on Independence with the full POPS orchestra and July 4’s POPS on the Parkway with the BIG Band. These free, large-scale Salute Series shows previewed this special show at the Kimmel Center on October 12.

Complementing Heather’s performance will be Broadway giant and Philadelphia native, Hugh Panaro. Hugh is famous for his portrayal of The Phantom in The Phantom of The Opera on Broadway and for his role as Jean Valjean in a Walnut Street Theatre production of Les Misérables—a role which earned him the Barrymore Award. Hugh will sing several pieces, including solos and duets with Heather.

Helpful Information

This program, including intermission, is approximately two hours in length. Artists and program are subject to change without notice. Discounted parking passes are available from select garages. For more information, please call 215.893.1999 or add a parking pass during checkout when purchasing your tickets.


We hope all of our guests will have a great time and make many memories at our concerts and events. Post your photos or videos on social media and include #phillypops for a chance to win a pair of tickets to any upcoming concert in the current or following season! Please refrain from flash photography in the concert hall. 

Enjoy the show!

Guest Artists
Heather Headley

Heather Headley, vocalist


Tony and Grammy Award winner Heather Headley originated the role of Nala in the original Broadway cast of the Elton John and Tim Rice’s hit Tony-winning musical The Lion King. She won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical and Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Musical for her portrayal in the title role in Aida.

She has been named one of People Magazine’s “50 Most Beautiful People” and Essence Magazine’s “30 Women To Watch.” Heather followed up her Broadway success on the pop charts with her 2002 debut album on RCA Records, This Is Who I Am, which featured productions by several top-flight producers including Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis and Shep Crawford. Two songs — “He Is” and “I Wish I Wasn’t” — both emerged as Top 5 R&B and Dance chart hits.

Heather earned numerous accolades for This Is Who I Am, including Grammy Award nominations for Best New Artist and Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards for R&B/Soul Album of the Year and Best R&B/Soul or Rap New Artist, NAACP Image Awards nominations for Outstanding New Artist and Outstanding Female Artist, and BET Awards in the “Cool Like That” category.

In January 2006, Heather returned with her long-awaited second solo album In My Mind, once again working with an A-list of producers, among them Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Ne-Yo, Warryn Campbell, and Lil’ Jon. The title track became Heather’s first #1 hit, topping the Dance charts.

Heather took her first foray into the gospel music world in 2009 with the release of her third studio album Audience of One — for which she won the Grammy Award for the Best Contemporary R&B Gospel Album.

In 2016, Heather made a triumphant return to Broadway playing Shug Avery in The Color Purple.

Over the past few years, she has displayed her versatility as one of classical star Andrea Bocelli’s favorite singing partners in many of his American and international tours.

She has performed on numerous daytime and late night shows, including The View, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Tonight Show, and The Late Show.  She was the spokesperson for the March of Dimes and led their “I Want My 9 Months” campaign, and also serves on the board of Directors for the Catalyst Charter Schools in Chicago.

Heather was born in Trinidad and is a Northwestern University alum.

Hugh Panaro, vocalist


Guest vocalist Hugh Panaro spent many of his formative years living in Philadelphia. An East Oak Lane resident, he began performing at the age of 13 and studied voice with Robert Grooters at Temple University's Boyer College of Music and Dance. He was quickly drawn to Broadway, where he made his debut in Les Miserables as Marius, a role he originated in the first U.S. national touring company. He has performed in many theatrical performances on Broadway and throughout the country, performed with various symphonies, and toured with Barbra Streisand, but he might be best known for his performances in Phantom of the Opera. He is one of the few actors to play both the roles of Raoul (1991) and the Phantom (1999) in the Broadway production.

The Philly POPS BIG Band


The Philly POPS BIG Band performs throughout the Philadelphia region. Composed of 18-20 musicians – five saxophones, five trumpets, four trombones, a drum set, a piano, a guitar, and bass – the BIG Band plays swing, ragtime and jazz in the style of the Count Basie Orchestra and Harry James Band while expanding its repertoire into all kinds of popular music from Latin to funk and rock. The Philly POPS BIG Band members were chosen for their passion for popular music. Each is also a teaching artist, adept at instructing the next generation of musicians.

"This woman is one of the great entertainers of the day, on record and on stage.” —Billboard Magazine
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