Great Musicals are More Than Just An ‘Illusion’


April 27th, 2016

Omaha, NE — The last show from the Omaha Symphonic Chorus looks back at 50 years of Broadway.

The final show of the season for the Omaha Symphonic Chorus is called Illusions II, the second iteration of the group’s Broadway retrospective. Songs from 17 different musicals spanning the 1960s to present day will be performed by individuals from the chorus ranging from poignant solos to big ballads. The chorus’ conductor, Dr. Greg Zielke, said the show is a special highlight for both the audience and the performers.

The Omaha Symphonic Chorus

The Omaha Symphonic Chorus

“This is an opportunity for our choral singers to show another side of themselves,” he said. “Each one has a solo or duet. It not choral performances but, rather, individuals from the chorus showing their talents.”

Zielke said that piecing a show of this nature together is both a joy and a challenge. You want music that not only provides a proper spectrum of the era but also showcases the unique individual talents of each performer.

“It was helpful to have the broad concept of telling the story of American musical from the 1960s to the present,” he said. “That’s a helpful beginning; at least now we have a skeleton from which we can put the songs together. Then, we really felt it was important to have a tremendous variety; not only in terms of the different eras of the musicals but the individual songs themselves.”

The Omaha Symphonic Chorus prides itself on its variety and collaboration. Patrons can routinely find them working side-by-side with the likes of the Omaha Symphony as well as groups like UNO’s Moving Company and the choruses  of both Creighton and Grace University. Another things that separates the group, Zielke said, is the diversity of their offerings.

“We just finished a performance of the Mozart Coronation Mass about four weeks ago,” he said. “ And here we are now, doing something in a totally different musical spectrum. Instead of a chorus singing the beautiful music of Mozart, now we’re singing individuals performing these tremendous songs from the theatre. It’s awesome.”

For Zielke, this weekend’s show is a great summation of why the Omaha Symphonic Chorus has existed for so many years.

“People really enjoy seeing the wonderful talent of the performers from the Omaha Symphonic Chorus,” he said. “But, the song themselves, each one of them really have a story to tell. I think it will be a tremendous 75 minutes of emotional give-and-take with high energy and marvelous performances.”

The Omaha Symphonic Chorus’ latest show, Illusions II, will perform Saturday, April 30th at 3pm and 7:30 pm inside the Grace University Chapel on 7th and Pine Street. For more information on the event, visit

Comments are closed.

©2022 KVNO News