Rachel Platten will headline the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular

Plus: The performances and fireworks display will be live-streamed on Boston.com and BostonGlobe.com.

Fireworks shoot from the Hatch Shell as confetti falls during the annual Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular on the Esplanade.
Fireworks shoot from the Hatch Shell as confetti falls during the 2017 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular. –Associated Press

One of Boston’s most patriotic traditions will feature an all-women lineup of guest artists this year.

Rachel Platten will headline the 2018 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular, according to event details announced Wednesday by the Boston Pops. Platten, who grew up in Newton, is known for her hit “Fight Song,” which topped multiple charts in 2015. Her album “Wildfire,” released in 2016, was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.

“I really think sometimes it comes out just like you want it to come out, and I think this is one of the cases,” Keith Lockhart, director of the Boston Pops Orchestra, said in an interview. “We’re very proud that it’s, for one thing, an all-female lineup of performers, which is not accidental given the world over the last few months.”


The annual event will also feature Grammy Award-winning artists Rhiannon Giddens, of the Carolina Chocolate Drops; Amy Ray and Emily Saliers, of the Indigo Girls; and EGOT-winner Rita Moreno, who’s arguably best known for her role as Anita in “West Side Story.”

“… To have [Moreno], who picked up an Academy Award for her role in ‘West Side Story,’ is just kind of icing on the cake,” Lockhart said.

This year’s concert will pay tribute to Leonard Bernstein, the renowned composer and former music director of the New York Philharmonic. Bernstein, who was born in 1918, was a Lawrence native and Harvard alumnus who made his professional conducting debut with the Boston Pops at the Hatch Shell in 1941, according to the Pops. The tribute will feature members of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus.

As always, a 20-minute fireworks show set to the sounds of the Boston Pops will top off the evening. The free, public event will start at 8 p.m. on the Esplanade. Plenty of broadcast and streaming options are available, including a live telecast on Bloomberg TV and — new this year — a live stream on Boston.com and BostonGlobe.com from 8-11 p.m.

Bloomberg anchors Alix Steel and Carol Massar will co-host the live concert and broadcast with additional reporting by Bloomberg anchor Matt Miller. Janet Wu, also of Bloomberg, will lead the digital streams.


2018 marks the second year that Bloomberg and Eaton Vance, a Boston-based global asset manager and the show’s presenting sponsor, are heavily involved in the event. Liberty Mutual had an 11-year run as the main sponsor until 2015, and philanthropist and former organizer David Mugar foot the bill in 2016 before retiring, according to a Boston Globe report.

“Quite simply put, the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular would not be possible without the generous financial support of these great companies,” Lockhart said in a news release. “To help defray costs associated with the event beyond these incredibly generous sponsorships, the Boston Pops will ask concertgoers and viewers to support the event through a text-to-give campaign.”