Music in the Mountains' annual Pops Night will take on a different sound this year - the Big Band sound of the 1930s and '40s. Cleveland Pops Orchestra founder and conductor Carl Topilow, who specializes in the music of Broadway, Hollywood and the Great American Songbook, will lead the Festival Orchestra on Wednesday night under the big top at Durango Mountain Resort.
Topilow also has directed the Cleveland Institute of Music for 28 years and is the music director and conductor of the National Repertory Orchestra, a Breckenridge summer music festival.
The program is a fun change from MITM's past Pops Nights, replacing the familiar "hits" of Beethoven, Mozart and Bach with the foot-tapping familiarity of Irving Berlin, Glenn Miller, the Dorsey brothers and Benny Goodman.
The evening will begin at 5:30 p.m. with a pre-dinner reception and silent auction followed by a sit-down dinner and live auction with works by regional and local artists up for bid.
The concert, under Topilow's direction, will begin at 7 p.m. Pops Night is a fundraiser, with all proceeds from ticket sales and both auctions benefiting Music in the Mountains.
Topilow will conduct the orchestra again on Thursday for Pops in Pagosa at BootJack Ranch near Pagosa Springs.
Tickets for Pops Night cost $150 and are available only by phone at 385-6820. More information about Topilow and all festival performances is available at www.musicinthe mountains.com.