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For Immediate Release: January 2, 2018

Media Contact: Sally Cohen, 585-749-1795,




Also in February: Swan Lake, Latin Heat, Mozart & Haydn


Rochester, NY – The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) presents the Rochester and RPO debuts of Broadway’s Ashley Brown for February’s first Pops concert on Friday and Saturday, February 2 & 3 at 8 p.m. in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. Ashley Brown originated the role of “Mary Poppins” on Broadway and starred as Belle in Beauty and the Beast. She has performed with virtually all of the top orchestras in North America as well as with Lyric Opera of Chicago, and has her own PBS special. Called “golden throated” by Time Out Chicago, Brown has also been named “the most versatile and noteworthy young talent on the Broadway stages” by Showbiz Chicago. Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik will lead a program of Rodgers & Hammerstein and other classic Broadway favorites.


On Thursday, February 8 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, February 10 at 8 p.m., RPO Music Director Ward Stare leads his first Philharmonics concert since making his Metropolitan Opera debut in December and January. A tribute to dance music, Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake will feature St. Louis Symphony Concertmaster David Halen as soloist for Tchaikovsky’s enchanting Violin Suite from Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake. The evening begins with a special performance of Dvorak’s Slavonic Dances with the Rochester City Ballet (David Palmer, artistic director), and ends with Ravel’s fiery showstopper, La Valse (The Waltz) – a hair-raising whirlwind that evokes old-world elegance teetering on the brink of depravity. The program also includes music from Béla Bartók’s scandalous ballet, The Miraculous Mandarin. Concert sponsor: The Gouvernet Arts Fund at The Community Foundation. Please note that all of the RPO’s Philharmonics concerts offer a free pre-concert discussion with the conductors and special guests one hour prior to curtain.


February’s second Pops program is guaranteed to warm up a chilly Rochester winter: Latin Heat with the Mambo Kings takes place on Friday and Saturday, February 23 & 24 at 8 p.m. in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. Since their orchestral debut with Jeff Tyzik and the RPO more than 20 years ago, Rochester’s Mambo Kings have earned a national reputation for their unique blend of Cuban and jazz inspirations. Also returning is renowned Latina soprano, Camille Zamora.


Ward Stare also conducts February’s only Sunday Matinee: Mozart & Haydn on Sunday, February 25 at 2 p.m. at Hochstein Performance Hall. Guest violinist Yevgeny Kutik has captivated audiences worldwide with his “dark-hued tone and razor-sharp technique” (New York Times), and will be making his RPO debut with Mozart’s Violin Concert No. 3. Kutik is an advocate for the Jewish Federations of North America – the organization that assisted his family in coming to the U.S. – and is involved with performing for International March for the Living, a Holocaust educational program. His performance is made possible by Dr. Sidney Sobel and Mrs. Barbara Sobel, and the performance of Mozart’s Violin Concert No. 3 is made possible by the Mozart Foundation Fund: Sarah D. Atkinson, M.D. and Steven Hess. The concert will also include Weber’s Oberon Overture and Haydn’s Symphony No. 103, “Drum Roll.”


Tickets* for all of the above (unless noted) start at $24 and are available online at, by phone at (585) 454-2100, or in person at the RPO’s Patron Services Center (108 East Ave., Rochester) and at all Wegmans That’s T.H.E. Ticket! locations.


The RPO’s 2017/18 Season is presented by Rochester Regional Health and the Dawn and Jacques Lipson Cancer Institute. The Philharmonics Series is sponsored by M&T Bank; the RPO Pops Series is sponsored by Canandaigua National Bank & Trust and Wegmans. 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 – 34,000 of them youngsters – 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 24-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 almost 17,000 children through its specific programs for school-aged children.


Media please note: High-resolution images of 2017/18 concerts are available at and upon request, and interviews and photo/footage opportunities can be arranged.