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Renee Fleming, Vanessa Williams to headline Kennedy Center in-person performance

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Renee Fleming, Vanessa Williams to headline Kennedy Center in-person performance
Renée Fleming (L), pictured with Tim Jessell, will perform in front of a live audience Sept. 26 at the Kennedy Center. File Photo by Ron Sachs/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 16 (UPI) -- Opera singer Renée Fleming and singer and actress Vanessa Williams will headline the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts' first in-person performance in more than six months.

The Kennedy Center said in a press release Wednesday that it will launch its On Stage at the Opera House series Sept. 26 with the concert "A Time to Sing: An Evening with Renée Fleming and Vanessa Williams."

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The concert will mark the Kennedy Center's first event with a live audience since March. The venue shut down performances in the spring due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Kennedy Center said "A Time to Sing" is designed "to safely bring back live performing arts to the Natural Cultural Center." The layout of the theater was reimagined to allow for social distancing.

Fleming and Williams will perform on a 30 x 24-foot extension built over the orchestra-level seating area. The pair will perform for 40 people, who will sit in physically-distanced pairs.

"A Time to Sing" will "explore the healing power of the performing arts and the resilience and hope needed in our current time. The concert features music direction by Rob Mathes and will include the debut of a new song by Andrew Lippa.

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In addition to the live audience, "A Time to Sing" will live stream on the Kennedy Center's website. Tickets cost $15 in advance and will be available to purchase Friday.

Future On Stage at the Opera House performances scheduled to be live streamed include the Kennedy Center Chamber Players (Oct. 2), the Jazz Gallery All-Stars (Oct. 8) and the Dover Quartet and the Escher Quartet (Oct. 20).

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