Live recordings of past performances of The Florida Orchestra will be broadcast on Classical WSMR radio starting tonight, March 26, at 7 p.m.
That means we can still listen to The Florida Orchestra together, even when we can’t sit in the same concert hall. You don’t even have to leave your couch. The Orchestra will share live recordings of select Masterworks concerts for free on Classical WSMR 89.1 FM and 103.9 FM radio and online at WSMR.org
, thanks to the Orchestra's partnership with the station.
"Not being able to perform so many great live concerts for you in the coming weeks is heartbreaking for all of us at The Florida Orchestra, writes Michael Francis, Musical Director of The Florida Orchestra, in a later to Orchestra patrons and donors. "We deeply miss being with you, and long to provide the live symphonic music that so powerfully connects us, especially now.''
Recordings of 13 full concerts will air on Thursdays through June 11.
The first broadcast on March 26 features Francis conducting this season’s Opening Night performance of works by Gershwin, Grieg, Ravel, and more as a tribute to the cultural riches of Tampa Bay, from the Cuban flair of Gershwin to the steamy rhythms of Ravel's Bolero. You can watch a video recording of Francis's popular Pre-Concert Conversation before tonight's broadcast at WSMR.org.
Subsequent broadcasts will be a mix of recordings from this season and TFO’s archives. If you miss a broadcast, you can listen on-demand at WSMR.org for 45 days after the airdate.
The Tampa Bay Times Masterworks series in conjunction with WUSF Public Media and Classical WSMR radio are being made possible by the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, Jay’s Fabric Center, the Florida Orchestra Musicians Association, and to the American Federation of Musicians Local 427-721.
Orchestra musicians and staff are also posting amusing videos on Facebook and YouTube showing what they are doing while sheltering at home during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Here are links to some of those:
Live concerts have been canceled through at least April 5 to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
"We hope these recorded performances will lift you up and bring a sense of comfort when you need it most, no matter where you are in the world,'' Francis says.
After the threat of the coronavirus passes, concerts will resume at the Straz Center in Tampa, the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg, and Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater. Look for updates and a full schedule on The Florida Orchestra website