News & Press

American Pops Orchestra’s ‘Voices of Tomorrow’ finals stream tonight

DC Metro Arts
April 25, 2020

“Right now we are all desperately seeking contact and connections,” said Luke Frazier, Founder and Maestro, American Pops Orchestra, in a recent phone conversation on a chilly, rainy morning. The Voices of Tomorrow Virtual Vocal Competition concludes tonight (April 25, 2020) with the ten finalists live-streaming starting at 8 p.m.

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American Pops Orchestra Presents Virtual Music Performances To Support Audiences And Artists: APO UNITED

Broadway World
March 26, 2020

Given the current social distancing guidelines, APO has developed "APO UNITED," online concerts from APO's selection of artists, highlights from APO instrumentalists and playlists of positivity by Frazier. They're available on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram.

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American Pops Orchestra cleverly re-imagines ‘The Pied Piper’ at Arena Stage

DC Metro Theater Arts
January 19, 2020

The weather outside was surely cold and cranky. But the outside world could be quickly forgotten as the American Pops Orchestra (APO), led by Maestro Luke Frazier, gently took children and adults by the hand and engaged them with a gleeful new musical take on an old fairytale...

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APO's "The Pied Piper" performs LIVE in the Loft

Fox 5 Washington DC
January 17, 2020

American Pops Orchestra's conductor Luke Frazier discusses upcoming musical with a modern twist and other shows at Arena Stage.

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Actor, Singer Garrett Clayton to Join The American Pops Orchestra

September 3, 2019

Garrett will be join The American Pops Orchestra in a special tribute performance to the legendary Dolly on Saturday, Sept. 21 at 8 p.m. at Arena Stage in Southwest D.C.

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Garrett Clayton Will Join The American Pops Orchestra To Celebrate Dolly Parton

Broadway World
September 3, 2019

Audiences have loved Garrett Clayton in "Hairspray Live!," Disney movies and his dramatic roles, and now he's getting ready to add his voice to some of Dolly Parton's greatest songs.

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Music & Mindfulness Preview

ABC7 News
June 12, 2019

Conductor Luke Frazier and yogi Michael Peterson give viewers of Let's Talk Live a sample of what people will hear and experience during APO's regular Music & Mindfulness yoga practices at Arena Stage.

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You Can Now Do Yoga with an Orchestra at Dupont Underground

October 18, 2018

Let the American Pops Orchestra be the soundtrack to your next sun salutation.

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QUEERY: Luke Frazier

May 9, 2019

The great American songbook — the popular standards of yesteryear — is important to conductor Luke Frazier because it connects people.

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Modern Luxury DC
April 15, 2019

DC Magazine celebrated five gents making major moves in the District.

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American Pops Orchestra brings live-music yoga sessions to Arena Stage

April 11, 2019

"Music and Mindfulness" brings together a small group of musicians with yoga teacher Michael Peterson

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Kathy Najimy on fighting for equality, “Hocus Pocus,” and performing with the American Pops Orchestra

May 16, 2019

Kathy Najimy has been a vital friend to the LGBTQ community in its fight for equality, gleefully entertaining us along the way.

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‘Trading Spaces’ host Paige Davis can’t wait to perform at the APO’s tribute to Jerry Herman

May 16, 2019

When her Hollywood agent asked if she’d like to take part in a symphonic staged concert in D.C., Paige Davis reacted with characteristic enthusiasm — and sass.

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On Your Feet! star Mauricio Martínez brings his voice and his truth to APO’s Jerry Herman tribute

May 16, 2019

In 2015, Mauricio Martínez was facing the potentially make-or-break decision dreaded by scores of rising young artists in the entertainment industry.

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College singers duke it out in the American Pops’ NextGen competition

Metro Weekly
March 7, 2019

Earlier this year, Luke Frazier, the founding music director of the American Pops Orchestra, “hit the rails and the trails” across America. His goal was to audition hundreds of students for the organization’s NextGen singing competition, ultimately whittling them down to 30 semi-finalists. But things didn’t go quite according to plan.

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American Pops Orchestra & National Society Of Arts And Letters Present NEXTGEN: FINDING THE VOICES OF TOMORROW

Broadway World
February 25, 2019

On Saturday, March 9, APO's Jazz Quartet will perform as 30 semi-finalists from university programs compete to win the top title. Votes from a panel of judges and the audience will determine the best voice of tomorrow. The program will take place at Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater in Washington, D.C., beginning at 8 p.m.

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Critical Acclaim for APO

‘I Am What I Am: The Music of Jerry Herman’ by The American Pops Orchestra

DC Metro Theatre Arts May 20, 2019
The American Pops Orchestra’s presentation of I Am What I Am: The Music of Jerry Herman was nothing short of spectacular. Maestro Luke Frazier created an uplifting and thrilling show, with a fresh arrangement of songs from “Hello Dolly!,” “La Cage aux Folles,” “Mame,” and more to inspire resilience. Fresh orchestrations from the 20-member Pops accompanied six magnificent vocalists.

Review: ‘An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly’ at American Pops Orchestra

DC Metro Theatre Arts January 31, 2019
The American Pops Orchestra recently presented their original adaptation of the children’s story, An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly. Writer, Claybourne Elder, has taken the madcap rhyme and transformed the poem into a zany musical with arrangements of popular hits, in classic APO style, cleverly worked into the story and sung by a trio of actors.

BWW Interview: Broadway's Patrice Covington, Apr 5, 2017
Broadway's Patrice Covington Shares Her Favorite '80s Songs in Advance of Friday's American Pops Orchestra Concert

Review: ‘Cinderella: A Magical, Musical Tale’ at The American Pops Orchestra

DC Metro Theater Arts, Mar 16, 2017
“This is what theater is all about and it was my dream when I started DCMetroTheaterArts 5 years ago-to see a venue filled with parents and kids laughing and clapping and having a great time together. And maybe these kids will ask their parents to take to the theater or a concert again and again. Fingers crossed."

Don't Rain On My Parade: 75 Years of Barbra Streisand

BroadwayWorld, Jan 17, 2017
“Dynamic is a great word to use. The new orchestra, under exceptional leadership from Maestro Frazier is pushing the boundaries of traditional pops orchestras and breathing new life into cherished favorites.”

The American Pops Orchestra Sings a Joyful Tribute to STREISAND, Jan 17, 2017
“Dynamic is a great word to use. The new orchestra, under exceptional leadership from Maestro Frazier is pushing the boundaries of traditional pops orchestras and breathing new life into cherished favorites.”

I’ll Be Seeing You: A World War II Love Story

DC Metro Theater Arts, May 9, 2016

Make Someone Happy: A 60’s Cocktail Party

DC Metro Theater Arts, May 9, 2016
“In a nutshell, The American Pops Orchestra’s cocktail party was frothy, fizzy, unequivocally delightful thanks in large measure, of course, to designated driver Luke Frazier.”

Piaf: A Centennial Celebration

New York Times, December 20, 2015
“As much as any individual singer, what warmed the evening was the sumptuous lilt of the 15-piece American Pops Orchestra, conducted by Luke Frazier.”

A Broadway Christmas

DC Metro Theater Arts, December 17, 2015
“What a gorgeous, festive evening The American Pops, under the direction and the quietly flowing baton of Luke S. Frazier, gave the Lisner audience last night with their entertaining and joyful A Broadway Christmas.”

Stairway to Paradise: A Gershwin Spectacular

DC Metro Theater Arts, October 20, 2015
“The American Pops Orchestra brought a fresh perspective to the American Songbook in its inaugural DC concert.”

A Message from The APO

The American Pops Orchestra has made it a priority to not only maintain Pre-COVID content in a virtual form, but also create new content to keep our audience engaged and our musicians employed.  As an organization that strives to break the mold of concerts, we are using COVID-19 to reimagine our normal operations.  Since March we have streamed two full original concerts, created solo performances by instrumentalist and vocalists, rethought our Music and Mindfulness series as a more often and virtual event, and partnered with organizations across the country in our virtual trivia series.  

In addition, APO has held multiple in-person socially distanced outdoor Porch Concerts that provide our audience with the opportunity to safely see live art despite the current situation around us.  Throughout the pandemic, APO has employed hundreds of musicians and artists and in a time when many other organizations couldn’t. In the words of Maestro Luke Frazier, “we never stopped.”

Moving forward, APO is proud to present our NextGen National vocal competition which will include students from across the country competing virtually for the chance to win a monetary prize and the opportunity to perform in a future APO MainStage Show. This will include a virtual audition and semi-finals with a live (COVID permitting) finals in Spring of 2021.  APO has also filmed multiple productions that will be broadcast nationally on PBS.  APO has been grateful to keep creating and making music despite the limitations caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and will keep working to bring you, our valued audience, original and unique content.

To support APO as we keep moving forward you can click here, so that we can continue to employ more artists and musicians.  If you have any questions about what APO has been doing during the pandemic, please email Thank you and stay safe.