Friday night’s Music for a Great Space concert offered an evening of music from opera, jazz, and Broadway. The different genres were sung by soprano Teri Bickham, a UNCG faculty member (opera), alto Ariel Pocock, a jazz singer and pianist featured in many jazz festivals, both nationally and internationally (also on the faculty at UNCG), and soprano Kira Arrington, who has appeared in many musical theatre productions. Arrington and Bickham were accompanied by Anja Arko, who received her doctorate in Piano Performance from UNCG and has appeared throughout the US and Europe. Each of the three singers treated those in attendance with four selections.

The evening opened with MGS executive director Rebecca Willie welcoming the large audience and thanking them for their support of this season, the 30th of the series. Next up was Lucy Ingram, Founding Artistic Director, who, along with her now deceased husband Henry, founded the series in 1992. She also thanked the audience and explained that this specific concert was the annual Ingram Memorial Concert, where all profits are directed to an endowment, which helps make MGS possible.

The evening of music began with Pocock singing “Tea for Two” by Vincent Youmans (1898-1946), which comes from the musical No, No, Nanette, accompanying herself on the piano and singing into a mic. The opening slow introduction was free, seeming to be quasi-improvised. A more upbeat presentation followed, loaded with both creative piano improv as well as impressive singing.

“Watch What Happens” from Newsies by Alan Menken (b. 1949) brought Arrington to the stage. It was obvious from the opening that she loves being on stage. Her physical communication, coupled with her animated singing of this number, was great. Arko’s accompanying was rock solid, supporting her all the way.

Bickham first sang “Come scoglio” from Così fan tutte by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791). This showpiece aria jumps from the high to low and vice versa, providing a tour-de-force, showing her impressive range as well as plenty of drama. Bickham was no less of an actress than Arrington, but in a decisively different manner. Again, Arko’s accompanying supplied the energy and underpinning needed to support the soprano’s hefty and attractive voice.

Pocock beautifully sang the languid ballad “If You Never Come to Me” by Antonio Carlos Jobin (1927-1994). Jobin is known as the “father of Bossa Nova,” and writer of “The Girl from Ipanema.” Other songs presented by Pocock included the laid-back “I’ve Never Been in Love Before” by Frank Loesser (1910-1969), and the cool “Imagination” by Jimmy Van Heusen (1913-1990). The singer’s piano improv and singing proved she is a real stylist, making each piece her own.

Arrington offered a poignant singing of “If I Loved You” from Carousel by Richard Rogers (1902-1979), the humorous “Nothing” from A Chorus Line by Marvin Hamlisch (1944-2012), and the half-spoken, half-sung “Wizard and I” from Wicked by Stephen Schwartz (b. 1948).

Bickham sang “Quando m’en vo” from La Bohème by Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924) with appropriate coquettishness, then a gorgeous lied with a rich presentation of “Allerseelen” by Richard Strauss (1864-1949), and “Love Let the Wind Cry . . . How I Adore Thee” by Undine Smith Moore (1904-1989).

While there was no problem hearing Bickham, the large sanctuary sometimes swallowed some of the words in both Arrington’s and Pocock’s singing, but the musicality of all three was never lost.

The trio, accompanied by Arko, returned for an encore to the delight of the audience with a wonderful and humorous arrangement of “The Girl in 14G” by Jeanine Tesori and Dick Scanlan. The work features all three styles, a perfect concluding summary of the evening’s music making.