The Florida Orchestra is set to embark on a 2013-14 season of change and adventure.
With last year's departure of artistic director Stefan Sanderling, a carefully selected group of 12 guest conductors is scheduled to helm the season's Masterworks programs.
Each will prove his or her mettle leading the orchestra in an array of symphonic and choral works by Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Brahms, Elgar, Rachmaninoff and Bartok.
There is no guarantee audiences will greet a new maestro this season. It may take two or three years before the orchestra's board of directors finds the right person for the job. Still, these 12 performers are more than subs or candidates for the vacant artistic director spot; they are integral contributors to the orchestra's vitality and continued show of excellence.
Principal Pops conductor Jeff Tyzik will join three others to present the new Pops season lineup that is filled with variety, from Cirque performers to James Bond to a boisterous dance program.
Audiences also can look forward to principal guest and Coffee Concert series conductor Stuart Malina continuing to bring variety to Tampa Bay mornings. The series opens with Russian compositions with subsequent programs of Copland, Debussy, Gershwin and more.
The performances will be at the three principal arts venues in the Bay area, the Straz Center in Tampa, the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg and Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater.
Ticket prices for all series remain the same. Masterworks and Pops series tickets are $15, $30 and $45 each, with student/educator and military tickets discounts. Coffee Concerts range from $24 to $42. Subscription and customized package prices are at last year's rates and are on sale now.
For information, call (727) 892-3337 or (800) 662-7286, or visit www.floridaorchestra.org.
Here's a look at the 2013-2014 Florida Orchestra Masterworks, Pops and Coffee Concert season. For information, go to floridaorchestra.org:
Oct. 11-13 – Beethoven's Symphony No. 9; season's opening night: Former kapellmeister at the Deutsche Oper Berlin Evan Rogister makes his TFO debut conducting The Florida Orchestra and The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay in Stravinsky's "Symphony of Psalms" and Beethoven's "Symphony No. 9, Choral." Vocal soloists for the Choral Symphony are soprano Katie van Kooten, mezzo soprano Nancy Maultsby, and tenor Nathaniel Peake.
Nov. 1-3 – Sprach Zarathustra: Michael Francis, chief conductor and artistic adviser to Sweden's Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, is joined by American pianist Orli Shaham performing Mozart's "Piano Concerto No. 20." The program also includes Richard Strauss' "Also Sprach Zarathustra" and TFO's premiere of Benjamin Britten's "Sinfonia da Requiem."
Nov. 8-10 – Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1: Assistant conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra Teddy Abrams is joined by British pianist Stephen Hough to perform Tchaikovsky's "Piano Concerto No. 1" on a program with the overture to "La Gazza Ladra" and Bartok's "Concerto for Orchestra."
Nov. 22-24 – Elgar's Cello Concerto: Music director of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra Mei-Ann Chen will share center stage with TFO principal cellist James Connors in Elgar's "Cello Concerto" on a program with Haydn's "Symphony No. 88" and Dvorak's "Symphony No. 8."
Dec. 6-8 – Mahler's Symphony No. 1, Titan: Tito Muñoz, music director of the National Opera of Lorraine and the Orchestre Symphonique et Lyrique de Nancy in France, takes the podium for Mahler's "Symphony No. 1 Titan," on a program that includes the TFO premiere of John Adams' "Chamber Symphony."
Jan. 10-12, 2014 – Bravo Beethoven!: Music director of the New West Symphony Orchestra in Los Angeles Marcelo Lehninger returns to conduct an all-Beethoven program featuring the TFO debut of Irish pianist John O'Conor in "Piano Concerto No. 3."
Jan. 24-26, 2014 – Bartok and Brahms: Music director of the Berkeley Symphony, Lisbon native Joana Carneiro makes her TFO conducting debut in a program featuring concertmaster Jeffrey Multer performing Bartok's "Violin Concerto No. 2." The concert also includes Brahms' "Symphony No. 2" and TFO's premiere of American Steven Stucky's "Radical Light."
Feb. 21-23, 2014 – Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini: Both making their TFO debuts, American pianist Andrew von Oeyen performs Rachmaninoff's "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini" under the baton of music director of the Wichita Symphony Daniel Hege. The program also includes Schumann's "Symphony No. 2" and TFO's premiere of American composer Michael Daugherty's "Red Cape Tango."
March 14-16, 2014 – Korngold's Violin Concerto: Malina and the orchestra are joined by American Caroline Goulding in her TFO debut performing Korngold's "Violin Concerto." The program also includes Prokofiev's "Symphony No. 5" and TFO's premiere of Thomas Adès' "Dances from Powder Her Face."
March 21-23, 2014 – Bartok's Piano Concerto No. 1: Under the baton of TFO conductor emeritus and artistic adviser Stefan Sanderling, German pianist Markus Groh returns to perform Bartok's "Piano Concerto No. 1." The program also includes TFO's premiere of Sibelius' "Symphony No. 4" and the world premiere of a new work by Tampa Bay area composer David Rogers.
April 11-13, 2014 – Mozart, Diamond & Brahms: Former music director of the Seattle Symphony Gerard Schwarz conducts a program of three TFO premieres: Mozart's "Symphony No. 28," American David Diamond's "Symphony No. 4" and Arnold Schoenberg's orchestration of Brahms' "Piano Quartet in G minor, Op. 25."
April 25-27, 2014 – Tan Dun's Water Concerto: TFO principal percussionist John Shaw is the soloist in the orchestra's premiere of Tan Dun's "Water Concerto." Haydn's "Symphony No. 103, Drumroll," and Sibelius' "Symphony No. 2" also are on the program.
May 16-18, 2014 – Tchaikovsky's Pathétique: Associate conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra Cristian Macelaru returns to conduct Tchaikovsky's "Symphony No. 6, Pathétique." Classical guitarist Manuel Barrueco also will perform "Concierto Barroco."
May 30-31, 2014 – Ravel's Daphnis et Chloe: Assistant conductor of the New York Philharmonic Joshua Weilerstein conducts three TFO premieres: Haydn's "Symphony No. 60, Il Distratto"; Toru Takemitsu's "Toward the Sea II" for alto flute, harp and string orchestra; and the complete ballet score of Ravel's "Daphnis et Chloe" featuring The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay.
Oct. 25-27 – Cirque de la Symphonie: The orchestra performs a broad selection of symphonic favorites as premiere cirque artists, including aerial flyers, acrobats, contortionists, jugglers and more, perform extraordinary feats.
Nov. 15-17 Let's Dance: A celebration of great dance tunes and styles with award-winning dancers showing their stuff with the tango, waltz, cha-cha-chá and maybe some "Dirty Dancing" on the side.
Dec. 13-15 – Holiday Pops!: The spirit of the season soars with The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay performing holiday favorites from "Silent Night" to "Ave Maria" to Duke Ellington's "Nutcracker Suite."
Jan. 17-19, 2014 – Bond & Beyond: Michael Krajewski, conducts and vocalist Debbie Gravitte performs a salute to spies, sleuths and bungling inspectors with music from "You Only Live Twice," "Pink Panther," "Dick Tracy" and more.
Feb. 14-16, 2014 – A Evening of Rodgers & Hammerstein: You'll whistle a happy tune when vocalists Sandra Joseph and Ron Bohmer with The Master Chorale perform the best of the writing duo, including "The King and I," "Oklahoma," "The Sound of Music" and more.
March 7-9 – When Irish Eyes Are Smiling: Cathie Ryan, called "one of the leading voices in Celtic music," will sing ballads and traditional tunes of the Emerald Isle in this musical prelude to St. Patrick's Day. An Irish band and dancers also will perform.
April 4-6 – A Tribute to Benny Goodman: A foremost interpreter of Benny Goodman, Dave Bennett and his sextet join the orchestra for a swinging night of classics such as "Let's Dance," "I Got Rhythm," and "Moonglow."
May 23-25 – A Stars & Stripes Hit Parade: Bob Bernhardt conducts a Memorial Day weekend of overtures, marches and Americana favorites, including an "Armed Forces Salute" and "I'm a Yankee Doodle Dandy."
Coffee Concert Series
Oct. 24 — "From Russia With Love"
Nov. 14 — "Music Around the World"
Dec. 12 — "Sounds of Celebration"
Jan. 16, 2014 — "Musicians in the Spotlight"
Feb. 12-13, 2014 — "Something Old, Something New"
March 5-6, 2014 — "A Salute to Broadway"
April 2-3, 2014 — "Theme & Variation"
May 22, 2014 — "Earth, Wind, Fire & Water"