CHICAGO – The Windy City’s own Ron Hawking returns this fall to Apollo Theater Chicago (2540 N Lincoln Ave) with the 10-year anniversary celebration of The Men and Their Music, produced by Rob Kolson Creative Productions, Inc. Originally debuting in 2007 at Chicago’s Mercury Theater, The Men and Their Music returns with a refreshed repertoire of iconic numbers from some of the world’s most legendary male vocalists and songwriters, including Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Ray Charles, Bobby Darin, Burt Bacharach and more. As an entertainer and vocalist, Hawking brings to life a treasure trove of hits from some of music’s greatest artists. Performances for The Men and Their Music begin September 7 and run through October 1. Tickets ($65 – $25) are on sale now and can be purchased at the Apollo Theater Box Office by calling 773.935.6100 or visiting Ticketmaster.com.
“For the 10th anniversary of The Men and Their Music, we’ve put together a refreshed set list that commemorates and showcases the legendary singers and songwriters of popular song, plus a few surprises from artists of today,” said Hawking. “With a team of brilliant musicians alongside me, we bring these great songs—and the men who sang them—back into the spotlight on the Apollo’s intimate stage.”
Hawking first created His Way – A Tribute to the Man and His Music in 1998, which paid tribute to Frank Sinatra and his songbook. Expanding on the demand for the musical style of artists like Sinatra, Hawking developed The Men and Their Music, encompassing a variety of personalities and music styles. Combined with a set list of over 15 songs and medleys, Hawking also surprises audiences with a few impersonations including Willie Nelson, Tom Jones, Joe Cocker and others, capturing the essence of these legendary stars.
The performance schedule for “The Men and His Music” is as follows: Thursdays at 2 p.m., Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. (no performance on Sunday, September 24). For a detailed performance schedule, visit ApolloChicago.com. For ticket inquiries for groups of 10 or more, call Group Theater Tix at 312.423.6612.
About Ron Hawking
Hawking, one of Chicago’s best loved entertainers and the winner of many awards, knows how to deliver a performance that truly comes from his heart. Singing before he could talk, Hawking learned to play piano in grammar school and guitar in high school nurturing his passion for performing, recording and making records.
After recording two albums and touring with the group The New Era, Hawking returned to Chicago and began directing his talent toward the recording studio. Soon, he went from singing and playing with his band in night clubs to singing in the recording studio on countless broadcast commercials for TV and radio.
With a successful studio career firmly in grasp, Hawking sharpened his performance skills and studied improvisation at Chicago’s Second City. Shortly thereafter, he left Chicago to study acting at The Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City. Returning to Chicago a few years later, he worked as a singer and impressionist, in-demand for commercials and corporate events around the city. In 1995, Hawking was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and shifted focus from performance to treatment for a year, going from being a patient to being a cancer survivor.
Hawking created and self-produced the hit musical His Way – A Tribute to the Man and His Music, which played at Chicago’s Mercury Theater and went on to play San Francisco followed by a national tour. His Way then returned to Chicago, where Hawking performed the show at his own custom built theater, the His Way Theater, built inside studio “A” at Chicago’s NBC Tower. In 2007, Hawking created and produced another hit musical, The Men and Their Music, honoring the legendary singers, songwriters, and performers that Hawking calls “his musical mentors” that have provided him with musical inspiration throughout his career.
Hawking’s movie credits include Mollywood, Widow (both set for 2018 release), The Express and Look Who’s Talking. He was presented with Chicago Music Awards CMA’s 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award, and his recent CD, The Song is You, was nominated to the category of Best Traditional Pop Vocalist Album at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards.
About Apollo Theater Chicago
Apollo Theater Chicago, located in the heart of Lincoln Park since 1978, has been home to many of the city’s biggest hits including the recent Million Dollar Quartet, which holds the record for the longest-running Broadway musical in Chicago history. Resident companies of the Apollo Theater include Emerald City Theatre Company and Baby Wants Candy, and many up-and-coming companies can be seen nightly in the theater’s 50-seat downstairs studio. Recently renovated and fully accessible, the Apollo Theater’s intimate 435-seat mainstage continues to deliver world-class theater as one of the city’s premiere off-Loop houses.