The Florida Orchestra

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2014/2015 Season - Tampa Bay Times Masterworks
Saturdays in St. Petersburg
Imperial – 14 concerts
Call our Ticket Center to order the series 727.892.3337

Beethoven & Rachmaninoff
Sat, Oct 11, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Adams’ Lollapalooza opens this concert with a sense of fun and playful rhythms. Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1 then brings together the piano and orchestra in a sonic tapestry of drama, passion and graceful crystalline melodies before the evening concludes with the lush themes of Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances. Joshua Weilerstein conducts. 

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Barber's Violin Concerto
Sat, Oct 25, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Ives' Central Park in the Dark offers listeners a contemplative sound collage reflecting a nighttime walk in this famed New York City park in the early 1900s. Barber’s Violin Concerto soars with a glorious blend of melancholic and heart-tugging beauty, and Elgar’s Symphony No. 1 fills the hall with sweeping grandeur and nobility, ending in a triumphant march. Michael Francis conducts.

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Carmina Burana
Sat, Nov 15, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

The evening starts with Schubert’s dramatic and spirited Rosamunde Overture and then transitions into Debussy’s world of fantastic sounds and swirling vibrant orchestral colors in Nocturnes. Orff’s Carmina Burana provides an almost pagan musical potion of soaring vocal soloists, frenzied choral passages and pulsating percussive orchestration. Danail Rachev conducts.

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New World Symphony
Sat, Dec 6, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

The evening opens with Ravel's Le tombeau de Couperin. Strauss showcases the noble sound of the horn among wonderful melodies, flourishes and fanfares.  Dvorak’s landmark work interweaves a wealth of melodies saluting the New World and yet longing for his Czech homeland. Stuart Malina conducts.

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Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto
Sat, Jan 17, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Armed with flare and panache, Jennifer Koh promises to set afire Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, followed by his beloved favorite, Symphony No. 4, overflowing with emotions and lush symphonic sounds. The program opens with Schoenberg’s Canto. Tito Muñoz conducts.

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Romeo & Juliet
Sat, Jan 24, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Barber evokes the spirit of the Baroque church organ in his Mutations from Bach for Brass and Timpani. Copland’s Piano Concerto captures a truly American musical atmosphere, full of exuberance punctuated with blues and jazz, while Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Tsar’s Bride Overture sets a Russian mood prior to Prokofiev’s sampling of the lush and passionate themes from Romeo and Juliet. Gerard Schwarz conducts.

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Faure's Requiem
Sat, Feb 7, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Dutilleux conjures up otherworldly sounds and haunting timbres in Métaboles, which is an apt prelude to Ravel’s Ma Mère L’Oye (Mother Goose) ballet with its stunning orchestral colors weaving together the worlds of childhood innocence and fairytale characters. Faure seems to defy the theme of death in his requiem, which is so full of life-affirming musical beauty. Michael Francis conducts.

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Beethoven's Symphony No. 4
Sat, Feb 21, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Wagner’s overture offers a powerful distillation of music from Tannhäuser, a tale of redemption through love. Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No. 2 contrasts eloquently dramatic and sweetly lyrical lines with electrifying and virtuosic displays. Beethoven closes the evening with beautiful themes of his Symphony No. 4 evoking majesty, mystery, drama, serenity and joy. Perry So conducts.

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Mozart & Brahms 
Sat, Feb 28, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Thomas Adès Three Studies from Couperin provides an engaging adaptation of this French Baroque composer’s delightful harpsichord studies. Violin virtuoso Karen Gomyo performs Mozart’s Turkish Concerto with its joyful exuberance and gypsy-like flair for showmanship. Brahms’ Symphony No. 4 closes the evening in this work of majesty, grandeur and monumental musical scope. Joshua Weilerstein conducts. 

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Russian Extravaganza
Sat, Mar 14, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

This all Russian program begins with Stravinksky’s Petrushka, the tragic tale of puppets endowed with human vulnerabilities.  Intertwining the themes of life and death, Rachmaninoff’s Isle of the Dead sets a mood of mystery and contemplation. The evening closes with Tchaikovsky’s gorgeous yet tragic tale of love in his symphonic poem Francesca da Rimini. Michael Francis conducts.

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Mahler's Symphony No. 4
Sat, Mar 21, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

The night begins with Strauss’ wonderfully intimate interplay of 13 wind instruments in Serenade for Winds, prior to Barber’s nostalgic Knoxville: Summer of 1915, with its recollections of idyllic childhood memories of simpler times in rural America. Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 shares a unique mood of joyous and lovely melodies throughout, featuring the soprano in the radiant finale. Cristian Macelaru conducts.

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Sat, Apr 18, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Jennifer Higdon’s lovely, mystical and ethereal memorial piece, blue cathedral, invites one to simply be with her music. Bartók’s Piano Concerto No. 3 offers sparkling dance rhythms and forceful fugal passages as a frame around the meditative center piece of this concerto. The gorgeous violin theme of Scheherazade weaves in and out of this orchestral tale of a thousand and one nights. Mei-Ann Chen conducts.

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The Planets
Sat, May 2, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

The concert opens with Barber’s The School for Scandal Overture, full of wit, spirit, brilliance and bravura. Mozart showcases the bassoon’s lyrical and playful qualities in his Bassoon Concerto, awash with sunny melodies. Holst’s popular The Planets is a powerful cosmic kaleidoscope of symphonic sounds portraying the many “moods” of the planets. Marcelo Lehninger conducts.

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Beethoven & Sibelius
Sat, May 30, 8pm, Mahaffey Theater

Rossini’s Overture to Semiramide kicks off the concert with lively melodies, bursts of boundless energy and raucous rhythms prior to Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8, brimming with infectious joy and sprightly themes. The evening closes with an intriguing, evolving sonic soundscape reflecting Sibelius’ reverence for and love of nature in his Symphony No. 5. Larry Rachleff conducts.

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