Two celebrated Indy performers from disparate musical genres – Josh Kaufman and Angela Brown – will lend their talents to the annual Circle of Lights presentation. Because of pandemic restrictions, this year’s annual holiday kickoff event is a special, made-for-TV onlyvirtual event. Instead of congregating Downtown, the show presented by IBEW 481 will be seen exclusively on WTHR Channel 13 at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 27.
Kaufmanwas the 2014 winner of The Voice andstarred in Broadway’s Pippin in 2014/15. He has also performed on NBC’s Today show, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, at Usher’s 15th Anniversary Celebration of his New Look Foundation. His music draws from a range of styles including funk, jazz, pop and rock.
Angela Brown, Indianapolis native and Crispus Attucks graduate, has been featured in Oprah Magazine, Essence Magazine, Ebony Magazine, Reader’s Digest and CNN world-wide. Brown has received rave reviews in which CBS News declared “the future of opera has arrived” and New York Times exclaimed “at last an Aida.”
But there’s more on the playbill – performers chosen from scores of online submissions through the Tom Wood Talent Search held in September. All entertainers donate their time and talent for the Circle of Lights show. Santa will also help flip the switch to illuminate Monument Circle, marking the kick-off to the holiday season.
The show’s best kept secret may be a duo composed of 21-year-old Jordan Bridges of Fort Wayne and 22-year-old Samantha “Sam” Voegele from Noblesville. Both are seniors at Purdue University. The duo has sung the national anthem for sold out basketball games at Purdue, played gigs at The Tap in West Lafayette and performed with the band Kinnection. The band has provided musical entertainment for Purdue’s Dance Marathon for three years straight. Jordan and Sam will be performing an original song, The Christmas Feeling, during the Circle of Lights.
Meridian Moon was formed in 2020 as a supergroup of Indianapolis-area musicians, many of whom spend their days (and nights) as front-line medical professionals during this challenging pandemic. They are a high-energy group who have performed with acts all around the country with a diverse catalog of hits spanning the 60s to today, from Marvin Gaye and Fleetwood Mac to Maroon 5 and Post Malone. Members are Amber Ordaz (age 28 from Indianapolis), David Ertel (30, Indianapolis), Thyago Cruz (36, Indianapolis), Zachary Derringer (30, Indianapolis) and Pat Hannon (29, Fishers).
The Rosettes of Le Rose Dance Academy are from Franklin and consist of dancers age 6 to 19 years old from several different school districts. Under the direction of Amanda Rose Nixon, Le Rose Dance Academy is in its 26th year and has performed for the Circle of Lights seven times. The Rosettes are in their 18th year and have won several regional and national awards and titles as well as performing at local festivals, parades, The Indy 500 and Walt Disney World. Choreographers Katie James Miller and Holly Handlon are former Rosette members and Circle of Light performers.
Anneliese and Ali,ages 34 and 27, are a married duo from Morgan County. They have performed in Nashville’s Blue Bird Cafe and have upcoming Pride events scheduled for 2021. They currently have two singles out with a new Christmas release coming in December.
Circle of Lights is an official program of Downtown Indy, Inc. which focuses on development, management, activation and marketing to advance Downtown as a great place to live, learn, work and play. We’re the People Behind the Place. Visit www.downtowninydy.org for more information.