'Wicked' composer Stephen Schwartz to be honored in Palm Springs

Annenberg Theatre hosts event honoring award-winning musician

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. - Academy Award- and Grammy-winning composer/lyricist Stephen Schwartz will be honored in Palm Springs tomorrow, where a tribute program is planned at the Annenberg Theater.

Schwartz will receive a proclamation from the city, and Mayor Steve Pougnet will declare it Stephen Schwartz Day, as he receives the Desert Ensemble Theatre Company's inaugural Melpomai Award for excellence in thedevelopment of theater nationally.

Desert Ensemble co-artistic director Eric Olson said "When You Believe: A Conversation With and Tribute To Stephen Schwartz" will be moderated by veteran Broadway actor Scott Logsdon, who will interview Schwartz on stage about his career.

Singers will perform his works, including Tony nominee Andrea McArdle, Broadway's original "Annie"; and Hunter Parrish, who played Jesus in the recent Broadway revival of Schwartz's "Godspell."

Schwartz has won four Grammys, three Oscars, one Golden Globe and four Drama Desk awards for his composing and songwriting work in musicals and films.

His credits include "Wicked," "Godspell" and the animated films"Pocahontas" and "Prince of Egypt."

He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in April 2008. He was inducted in 2009 into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and in January 2010 into the American Theatre Hall of Fame.

In 2008, "Wicked" notched its 1,900th performance on Broadway, making Schwartz the only songwriter in Broadway history to have three shows run more than 1,900 performances.

"We are very excited that the city is helping us honor Stephen's long and legendary career," Olson said. "Palm Springs is a city that really supports the arts, and this is another example of that."

A post-show reception will be held for ticketholders at Azul Tapas Lounge, 369 N. Palm Canyon Drive.

For tickets -- which are $55, $65 and $75 -- contact the Annenberg Theater box office at (760) 325-4490 or go to www.psmuseum.org.

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