Philippine Development Foundation (PhilDev) announces that Filipino-American Robert Lopez — Tony Award-winning composer, lyricist and co-creator of Broadway smash hit musicals “Avenue Q” and “The Book of Mormon” — will be honored with an Award of Excellence at its upcoming gala event, PhilDev Celebrates Broadway: Suites by Sondheim, on Nov. 7, 2011 at 7:30 p.m. at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center in New York City.

Directed by actor and artistic director of Diverse City Theater Company, Victor Lirio, with music direction and original orchestrations by Tom Myron, “Suites by Sondheim” will present many of iconic American lyricist and composer Stephen Sondheim’s legendary works from such musicals as “Company,” “West Side Story,” “Saturday Night,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Anyone Can Whistle,” “Follies,” “A Little Night Music,” “Merrily We Roll Along,” and “Sunday in the Park with George.”

The concert is being produced to raise funds for the projects of PhilDev, a nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating sustainable social and economic growth in the Philippines.

Filipino-Americans represent the second largest Asian-American group in the U.S. and are the largest Asian-American group on Broadway and Off Broadway.

The one-night-only concert event headlined by Tony Award winner Lea Salonga (the first Filipino to receive the award) marks the first time Filipino-American Broadway stars will converge on stage in a concert event.

“As a proud Filipino-American who both strives for excellence and loves Stephen Sondheim, I could not imagine anywhere I’d rather be than accepting the Award of Excellence given by PhilDev at a Sondheim concert,” Lopez said.

“I am truly honored and I thank PhilDev for this very meaningful recognition.”

Lopez’s first two Broadway musicals, “Avenue Q” and “The Book of Mormon,” are both critical and commercial smash hits and Best Musical Tony Award winners.

He shared Tony Awards for Best Original Score and Best Book for The Book of Mormon.

He also shared a Tony for Best Original Score and a Grammy nomination for “Avenue Q,” which he co-wrote and conceived.

With wife and collaborator Kristen Anderson-Lopez, he co-wrote songs for “Winnie the Pooh” (Disney feature animation, 2011) and “Finding Nemo: The Musical” (playing at Walt Disney World since 2006).

He shared two Daytime Emmy Awards for his music for Nickelodeon’s “The Wonder Pets” and a Primetime Emmy nomination for a song he co-wrote for the “Scrubs” musical episode on NBC.

A graduate of Yale University, Hunter College High School and the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, Lopez currently lives in New York City with his wife and two daughters.

His father, Frank Lopez, was born on board the last GI boat out of Manila after World War II.

“How appropriate that we are honoring Bobby Lopez with the Award of Excellence at a concert event for PhilDev that pays tribute to iconic lyricist and composer Stephen Sondheim,” said director and producer Lirio.

“Bobby created a new genre of musical theater that has been widely celebrated by the industry and global audiences for the past seven or eight years. Just like Sondheim, Bobby brought a new voice and perspective to the theater, and his original works have made Broadway accessible to younger audiences. As a fellow Filipino, we are proud of him!”

“Bobby represents the best of the Filipino-American, and the kind of distinguished global Filipino that PhilDev would like to represent and highlight to the world. He is a talented artist whose first two Broadway musicals have been both critically and commercially successful, a rare combination in the industry,” said Ronna Reyes Sieh, who-co-chairs the benefit.

“Having Bobby Lopez join our celebration makes the occasion even more significant to show that Filipinos are making a difference on the global stage.”

PhilDev Celebrates Broadway: Suites by Sondheim will be presenting top Filipino-American talents who have all made marks on Broadway in leading roles.

Joining Tony Award winners Lopez and Salonga at Alice Tully Hall are Joan Almedilla (“Miss Saigon,” “Les Misérables”); Alan Ariano (“Miss Saigon,” “The Encounter”); Emy Baysic (“Miss Saigon,” “Mamma Mia”); T.V. Carpio (“Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark”); Angel Desai (“Company”); Ali Ewoldt (“Les Misérables,” “West Side Story”); Rona Figueroa (“Miss Saigon,” “Les Misérables,” “Lennon,” “Nine”); Lydia Gaston (“The King & I,” “Miss Saigon”); Adam Jacobs (“Les Misérables,” “The Lion King”); Jose Llana (“The King & I,” “Spelling Bee,” “The Flower Drum Song,” “Wonderland”); Deedee Magno Hall (“Wicked,” “Miss Saigon”), Orville Mendoza (“Pacific Overtures,” “Miss Saigon”); Paolo Montalban (“Pacific Overtures,” “The King & I,” ABC/Disney’s “Cinderella” as Prince Charming opposite Brandy); Emily Morales (Lincoln Center’s “South Pacific”); Jennifer Paz (“Miss Saigon,” “Les Misérables,” “Joseph...Dreamcoat,” “Jesus Christ Superstar”); Diane Phelan (“South Pacific,” “West Side Story”) and company members Aaron Albano, Renee Albulario, Mary Aldousary, Angelica Lee Aspiras, Eileen Aurelia, Ester Barroso, Billy Bustamante, Leanne Cabrera, Michelle Camaya, Patricia Cancio, Liz Casasola, Karl Josef Co, Debralee Daco, Julie Danao-Salkin, Marc de la Cruz, Ma-Anne Dionisio, Ariel Estrada, Roy Flores, Albert Guerzon, Jeannie Hines, Devin Ilaw, Sacha Iskra, Joanne Javien, Brian Jose, Loresa Lanceta, Jaygee Macapugay, Mel Maghuyop, Jake Manabat, Alan Mangasser, Adam Marcelo, Jonelle Margallo, JP Moraga, Lora Nicolas, Jay Paranada, Catherine Ricafort, Enrico Rodriguez, Vincent Rodriguez III, Tony Romero, Chris-Ian Sanchez, Melissa Singson, Kay Trinidad and Dax Valdes.

Tickets for PhilDev Celebrates Broadway: Suites by Sondheim can be purchased at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center box office located on Broadway and 66th Street in New York City, online at, or by calling Center Charge at 212.721.6500.

Ticket prices are $100, $150, $250 and $500.

Limited patron/VIP subscriber seats of $1,000 are available which includes a pre-concert VIP reception by contacting Rene Encarnacion at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  or 650.288.3937.

One hundred percent of net proceeds will benefit Philippine Development Foundation.

Suites by Sondheim is being sponsored by Tallwood Venture Capital, Alvarez & Marsal, Ms. Mercedes Zobel, Mr. Washington Sycip, the Reginald F. Lewis Foundation, Gladney Center for Adoption, Philippine Airlines, Convergex, Prince Street Capital Management, Jerry Sibal Design Fusion, Robin Tomas VuQo Vodka, Ms. Elena Abella Brim and Jay and Renate Green.

Media support provided by Asian Journal and the Filipino Reporter.

About PhilDev

Formerly known as Ayala Foundation USA, PhilDev is a public charity registered with the United States Internal Revenue Service as a 501 (c) 3 tax-exempt organization.

It focuses on building an ecosystem of science and technology-based entrepreneurship and innovation for social and economic development in the Philippines.

As part of its commitment to diaspora philanthropy, PhilDev also generates resources from U.S.-based donors for nonprofit organizations in the Philippines.

For more information about PhilDev, visit



0 #1 L.P. Pelayo 2011-10-29 13:05
A fantastic show on Nov. 7.

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