ST. PETERSBURG, FL – For the first time, The Florida Orchestra is expanding its mission to bring live classical music and education to all with a new program of community residencies across Florida, starting in early 2017.
TFO will spend several days performing and connecting with residents in three Florida communities that have limited access to a major professional orchestra: the Avon Park area in Highlands County, Daytona in Volusia and Gainesville in Alachua. These residencies will include the full Florida Orchestra in youth concerts for public school students; side-by-side concerts with students and amateur musicians; and community concerts performed in a hospital, park or mall. In all, the residencies will bring symphonic music and education to at least 15,000 people. Most events will be free.
“The effect of our community engagement in Tampa Bay has been dramatic, from hospitals to schools, from malls to parks. What we’ve seen and heard has been so rewarding and uplifting that we want to share it and help enrich these other vibrant communities in Florida,” said Music Director Michael Francis, a driving force behind The Florida Orchestra’s expanded community programs. “The power of live music on people’s lives is truly extraordinary.”
The Florida Orchestra, now in its 48th season, is in a unique position to introduce the residency program. It is recognized by the League of American Orchestras as the largest orchestra in Florida, serving the second largest metropolitan area in the state, and as one of the most artistically significant orchestras in the nation.
“This is a fantastic cultural opportunity for the Volusia County community and an exciting educational experience for Volusia County schools music students,” said Monty R. Musgrave, performing arts specialist with Volusia County schools. “We are eagerly looking forward to participating in this collaboration with The Florida Orchestra.”
The residencies will give the orchestra a wider platform to promote quality music education for Florida students. TFO already is a close partner with the not-for-profit Florida Music Education Association during its annual conference in Tampa Bay, and the residencies will allow the orchestra to work with students in their home communities as well. Also, the orchestra will offer its successful, interactive, music education curriculum at no cost to the schools it visits. Tens of thousands of children in the bay area get their first live classical music experience through TFO’s youth, family and community concerts each year.
This season The Florida Orchestra, under the direction of Maestro Francis, has reaffirmed its mission to bring music to all people of Tampa Bay in a wide range of formats, in and out of the concert hall. TFO has expanded its reach with concerts in hospitals, universities, malls, parks and a veterans’ center.
And now this residency program, made possible through funding from the Florida Legislature and other donations, allows The Florida Orchestra to expand its impact beyond Tampa Bay and into other Florida communities.
Click for more on Music Director Michael Francis
The Florida Orchestra (TFO) is a non-profit, premier cultural and arts organization in the Tampa Bay area, dedicated to bringing music to all people. Under the leadership of 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 individual concert tickets: 727.892.3337 or 1.800.662.7286; floridaorchestra.org.
The Florida Orchestra has announced the 2016/2017 season, Michael Francis’ second as music director, featuring Beethoven, a David Bowie tribute, and acrobats! Concert information is now available for the Tampa Bay Times Masterworks, Raymond James Pops, Coffee Concerts, and Rock Concerts.
For a complete list of subscription packages, including series breakouts and pricing, click here.
Single tickets go on sale in August.