ST. PETERSBURG, FL – Singing straight from the heart of the Great American Songbook, multiplatinum-selling artist Michael Feinstein joins new Music Director Michael Francis for the crowning celebration of his inaugural season, The Florida Orchestra’s Second Annual Fundraising Gala concert on Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016.
Think Manhattan-style glitz and glamour as Feinstein takes the stage with the orchestra, under the baton of Maestro Francis. The night kicks off with a champagne reception and ends with a gourmet post-concert dinner, all at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg.
This year’s gala stands out as a momentous celebration of Maestro Francis. He has woven an American thread through his inaugural season, perfectly accented by Feinstein’s American songbook repertoire.The focus on popular music puts the orchestra’s commitment to diverse programming center stage; last year showcased classical music, with world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, and raised more than a half-million dollars to support the orchestra.
The gala benefits the orchestra and will help sustain its vibrant programs and vital functions. Event tables are available now by calling Elizabeth Ocampo at 727.362.5454. Concert tickets go on sale to TFO subscribers on Sept. 28 and to the general public on Nov. 2, for $50, $75, $100 and $150 – the same prices as last year.
About Michael Francis
Maestro Francis takes over in the fall as only the fourth music director in The Florida Orchestra’s 48 seasons. Quickly establishing an international presence, the British conductor also is music director of the Mainly Mozart Festival in San Diego and enters his third season as chief conductor and artistic advisor to Sweden’s Norrköping Symphony Orchestra. Click for a full bio
About Michael Feinstein
Almost no one nowadays performs American pop standards with the charisma and conviction of Feinstein. He is equal parts champion and archivist for music that defines American life in the 20th century, from the songbooks of Gershwin, Frank Sinatra, Irving Berlin, Duke Ellington and more.
Nominated for two Emmy and five Grammy Awards, Feinstein does it all: singer, pianist, conductor, recording artist and TV and radio host. He performs more than 200 shows a year, ranging from Carnegie Hall to the Sydney Opera House, as well as the White House and Buckingham Palace. In 2012, he was named Principal Pops Conductor of the Pasadena POPS, giving him a platform to deliver rare orchestrations and classic arrangements of American standards.
In his prolific recording career, he earned his fifth Grammy nomination in 2009 for the album The Sinatra Project, which was followed by The Sinatra Project, Volume II: The Good Life in 2011. Other recordings include Change Of Heart: The Songs of Andre Previn; Hopeless Romantics, a songbook of Harry Warren classics recorded with jazz pianist George Shearing; and Only One Life – The Songs of Jimmy Webb. In 2003, Feinstein received his fourth Grammy nomination for his release Michael Feinstein with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, his first recording with a symphony orchestra.
His Emmy-nominated TV special, Michael Feinstein – The Sinatra Legacy aired across the country in 2011. The PBS series Michael Feinstein’s American Songbook received the ASCAP Deems-Taylor Television Broadcast Award and is available on DVD. For his nationally syndicated public radio program Song Travels, Feinstein interviews and performs alongside of music luminaries such as Bette Midler, Neil Sedaka, Liza Minnelli, Rickie Lee Jones and David Hyde Pierce.
More than an entertainer, Feinstein founded the Great American Songbook Foundation in 2007, dedicated to keeping the legacy alive through education and scholarships. Click for more on Michael Feinstein.
About The Florida Orchestra
The Florida Orchestra (TFO) is a premier cultural organization in the Tampa Bay area, dedicated to bringing music to all people. Under the leadership of new Music Director Michael Francis, it performs series of classical, popular, rock and morning coffee concerts in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Clearwater, as well as free Pops in the Park concerts. Connecting to the community is a priority, with pre-concert talks, family and youth concerts and other educational activities. Kids get in free to classical Masterworks concerts with Classical Kids tickets. To subscribe or buy tickets: 727.892.3337 or 1.800.662.7286; www.floridaorchestra.org.