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For Immediate Release:  January 4, 2017
Media Contacts:  Sally Cohen, 585-749-1795,


Mozart’s Requiem, Sutton Foster, Jeremy Denk,
The Science of Sound
, Guitar Romances


Rochester, NY – February with your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) is as varied as a box of chocolates, and every concert delicious in its own way. The short, sweet month kicks off with a powerhouse: Mozart’s Requiem on Thursday, February 2 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, February 4 at 8 p.m. in Kodak Hall. Ward Stare conducts the now-legendary Requiem that was to become Mozart’s own funeral music, with the Eastman-Rochester Chorus (William Weinert, director) and soloists Kathryn Lewek (soprano), Renée Tatum (mezzo soprano), Anthony Dean Griffey (tenor) and Raymond Aceto (bass). The intricate textures of the piece – a centerpiece of the film, Amadeus – are mirrored by Hovhaness’ Fugue and Stravinsky’s self-proclaimed “War Symphony,” a razor-edged reflection of the atrocities of the age. This concert is made possible by The Mozart Performance Fund: Sarah D. Atkinson, M.D. and Steven Hess.

Part of the RPO’s educational initiatives that reach more than 16,000 students each year, the 2016-17 Primary Concerts: The Science of Sound take place Wednesday and Thursday, February 8 & 9 at 10:15 a.m. Thousands of area children from nine counties come together each year in the magnificent Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre for what may very well be their first exposure to symphonic music. Led by Principal Conductor for Education and Community Engagement Michael Butterman (The Louise and Henry Epstein Family Chair), the interactive, multi-media concerts feature age- and curriculum-appropriate themes. This year’s program includes carefully chosen music by Bizet, J.S. Bach, Brahms, Rimsky-Korsakov, Prokofiev, and Tchaikovsky.

Making her RPO debut on Friday and Saturday, February 10 & 11 at 8 p.m. in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre with Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik is two-time Tony Award winner, Sutton Foster. A true triple threat (singer/actor/dancer), Foster has starred in Anything GoesThoroughly Modern MillieLittle Women and much more, in addition to current roles in Sweet Charity and TV Land’s Younger. This concert is made possible with additional support from The Melvin and Mildred Eggers Foundation, and Dr. Eva Pressman and Dr. Seth Zeidman.

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Ward Stare conducts Romantic Classics with Stare & Denk on Thursday, February 16 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, February 18 at 8:00 p.m. in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. One of this country’s foremost pianists, Jeremy Denk is “someone you want to hear no matter what he performs” (The New York Times), and in this case, he’s matched with a piano concerto that’s as perfect as it gets:  Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2. This grand, passionate, intimate, and thrillingly virtuosic piece is paired with the symphonic drama that is Berlioz’ calling card in Selections from Roméo et Juliette. Jeremy Denk’s performance is made possible in part by The Alfred Davis and Brunhilde Knapp Artists Performance Fund.

Another Valentine-inspired treat takes place Sunday, February 19 at 2 p.m. in the Performance Hall at Hochstein. Guitar Romances, led by Michael Butterman, features Eastman School of Music Professor Nicholas Goluses for an afternoon of guitar masterworks: Respighi’s Ancient Airs & Dances, Suite No. 1; Vivaldi’s Guitar/Lute Concerto; and Rodrigo’s Fantasia para un gentilhombre. Eastman School of Music soprano Robin Steitz will join the orchestra for Villa-Lobos’ Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5, Ária. Tickets are $27.

Looking ahead, March will come in like a lion with Stare Conducts Brahms 1 on Thursday, March 2 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, March 4 at 8 p.m., in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. It was a creation nearly 20 years in the making, but when Brahms unleashed his symphonic powers at long last, it was with a mighty roar that both invoked the past and heralded the future. Chopin is synonymous with piano fireworks, and his second concerto is in good hands with Argentine pianist Ingrid Fliter, a noted Chopin interpreter. Brahms/Bright Sheng’s Intermezzo Op. 118, No. 2 “Black Swan” opens the powerful program, made possible with support from the Melvin and Mildred Eggers Family Foundation.             

Tickets for the concerts above, except where noted, start at $23, with student ticket info available at Tickets are available online at, by phone at (585) 454-2100, or in person at the RPO’s new Patron Services Center (108 East Avenue) and at all Wegmans That’s T.H.E. Ticket! locations.

The 2016/17 Season is presented by Dawn & Jacques Lipson, The Philharmonics Series is sponsored by M&T Bank, the RPO Pops Series is sponsored by Canandaigua National Bank & Trust and Wegmans, and the OrKIDStra media sponsor is RPO performances are also made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Additional support is provided by Monroe County, the City of Rochester, the Alfred Davis and Brunhilde Knapp Artists Performance Fund, the Mozart Performance Fund: Sarah D. Atkinson, M.D. and Steven Hess, and the Katherine T. and Jon L. Schumacher Orchestra Musician Soloist Fund.

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) has been committed to enriching and inspiring our community through the art of music since its founding in 1922. The RPO presents approximately 150 concerts and broadcasts a year, serving up to 170,000 people through ticketed events, education and community engagement activities, and concerts in schools and community centers throughout the region. 12th Music Director Ward Stare joins the ranks of former notable RPO music directors, including Eugene Goossens, José Iturbi, Erich Leinsdorf, David Zinman and Conductor Laureate Christopher Seaman. Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik has earned a national reputation for excellence in pops programming during his 22-year tenure with the RPO. With Michael Butterman as Principal Conductor for Education and Community Engagement (The Louise and Henry Epstein Family Chair) – the first endowed position of its kind in the country – the RPO reaches more than 16,000 children through its specific programs for school-aged children.

Media please note: High-resolution images of 2016/17 concerts are available at and upon request, and interviews and photo/footage opportunities can be arranged.