Osceola County Students to Experience Orlando Philharmonic Young People’s Concerts

Students at Osceola County School District perform “The Star Spangled Banner” at the concert. More photos here

Each year, over 55,000 elementary students across Central Florida experience the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra’s “Young People’s Concerts” at Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre in downtown Orlando. An annual Central Florida tradition, the concerts provide students the opportunity to experience a live performance of symphonic music, opera and ballet while learning about their core subjects. This year, thanks to funding from United Arts of Central Florida, the State of Florida Division of Cultural Affairs, and the Osceola County School Board, every 5th grade student in the Osceola County School District will see the 2013 Young People’s Concert, “Heroes & Legends” for free on Tuesday, November 5th at the Osceola County School for the Arts in the Osceola Performing Arts Center. It’s the first time students have been able to see the orchestra in their own neighborhood.

“It is a dream come true to think that close to 4,000 of our fifth graders will have the opportunity to experience this live performance,” said Debbie Fahmie, the Fine & Performing Arts Specialist for Osceola County Schools. “Our music teachers have been busy preparing the students.”

She says this is an opportunity she has  been looking forward to for over 5 years.

“I am so grateful for the partnership with United Arts that has made this possible,” she said. “This is the only way that a majority of our students will ever experience this sort of live performance.  I know that it will be transformational in so many young lives.”

Orlando Philharmonic Education Director Leia Barrett says the orchestra is proud to extend their program to a wider geographic area.

“These concerts are offered to schools all over Central Florida at the Bob Carr Centre, but it’s a completely different experience for students to experience the program at home as part of a community.  Words cannot express how thrilling it is to know that 29 elementary schools in Osceola County will meet the Philharmonic in their own backyard.”

Heroes & Legends features an orchestra of 49 Orlando Philharmonic musicians performing works by Strauss, Prokofiev, Wagner, Bizet and others, as well as favorites like Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land” and music from Disney’s “The Incredibles.” Anthony Hose of Stetson University will conduct the Osceola program, and guest vocalists and Orlando Ballet dancers also make an appearance.

Most Young People’s Concerts are held at Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre (401 W. Livingston Street, Orlando). The one remaining public performance will take place on Wednesday, November 20 at noon. Tickets are $6 each, available at 407.896.6700 x232 or orlandophil.org/tickets.

The Young People’s Concerts are an annual Orlando Philharmonic tradition, and have been part of the orchestra’s annual programming since the fall of 1993. The concert program and curriculum materials are designed for students in grades 3-5, and incorporate Florida’s Next Generation Sunshine State Standards as well as the Common Core State Standards for education. The 2013 concerts are sponsored by Orange County Public Schools, United Arts of Central Florida, The Chelsey M. Magruder Foundation, Lockheed Martin and Publix.