The Florida Orchestra Celebrates 50 Years

The Florida Orchestra celebrates its milestone 50th season with a blockbuster lineup of concerts ranging from Carmina Burana to the Music of Star Trek & Star Wars under the leadership of Music Director Michael Francis. The 2017-18 season debuts in October and reflects TFO’s deep roots in Tampa Bay while underscoring its bold future, with the debut of two weekend matinee series at the Mahaffey Theater, the world premiere of a major work commissioned by the orchestra, and expansion of its popular Coffee series at Ruth Eckerd Hall.

“The Florida Orchestra is a jewel in the crown of Tampa Bay,” said Maestro Michael Francis, who has signed on to lead TFO through the 2020-21 season. “Our 50th anniversary is a chance for us to celebrate our rich and successful past by performing favorite masterpieces from throughout the years. We will also look to our future with vibrant new works, including a very special anniversary commission by exciting young composer Michael Ippolito, who will capture the spirit of Florida to honor The Florida Orchestra. At the heart of our past and future is the extraordinary talent of The Florida Orchestra musicians, whom we will showcase in a variety of ways all season long.”

“Outside the concert halls, we will continue to grow our community programs, which have been so warmly received by everyone. We want to touch even more people this season through the power of music.”

Francis leads his third season brimming with special moments to celebrate the orchestra’s 50th anniversary of bridging the bay with music, which fittingly started more than five decades ago with an agreement signed on a boat in the middle of Tampa Bay in a merger of the Tampa Philharmonic and the St. Petersburg Symphony.

The Florida Orchestra still is the only performing arts organization that unites the bay area, with performances in Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater.

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