"Tonight Show" conductor Doc Severinsen has been named guest conductor for the Pacific Symphony in three programs during a 1987-88 pops series that will feature Ray Charles, Cleo Laine, Jose Feliciano and Chet Atkins as soloists.
Severinsen, a trumpeter and colorful foil for "Tonight Show" host Johnny Carson, was named the symphony's Principal Pops Conductor. However, others will be leading the orchestra in four of the season's seven programs at the Orange County Performing Arts Center.
John Dankworth, musical director of the London Symphony Orchestra Pops, will conduct the orchestra for Laine. Symphony Music Director Keith Clark will conduct a Christmas program featuring Shirley Jones as guest artist on two evenings in December.
Severinsen will bring along the Tonight Show Band to join with the Pacific Symphony for one of the concert programs, which will be devoted to big-band favorites on two evenings in March, 1988.
Each of the seven programs will be performed on two successive evenings in the center's Segerstrom Hall, for a total of 14 pops concerts.
Symphony general manager James Medvitz said season tickets for the 1987-88 pops series are now available to current subscribers. Tickets will go on sale to the public on June 15.
The season lineup announced by the symphony is:
--Oct. 8 and 9, singer Cleo Laine, with Dankworth conducting.
--Nov. 5 and 6, "Latin Night" featuring Jose Feliciano, with Severinsen conducting.
--Dec. 18 and 19, a Christmas concert with Shirley Jones and a 400-voice chorus assembled from Orange County singers. Keith Clark will conduct the choral half of the program. Everet Gordon, who regularly conducts for Jones, will lead the orchestra for her performances.
--March 11 and 12, "Big Band Night," featuring Severinsen and the Tonight Show Band.cq
--April 1 and 2, "Broadway Night," with artists to be announced.
--April 28 and 29, pianist, singer and songwriter Ray Charles, with Severinsen conducting.cq
--May 28 and 29, Chet Atkins as guest artist for an "All-American celebration," with a conductor to be announced.
For ticket information, call the symphony box office at (714) 973-1300.