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RPO’S Exquisite Puccini Program Revised

February 06, 2013

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For Immediate Release:  February 6, 2013
Media Contacts:   Sally Cohen, sally@sallycohenpr.com, 585-749-1795, @PR4Arts
RPO Info:  rpo.org, facebook.com/SuperRPO, twitter.com/SuperRPO, rpo-land.blogspot.com

Eastman’s Neil Varon conducts music from La bohème, Madama Butterfly

Rochester, NY – The program for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO)’s Exquisite Puccini concerts on Thursday, February 28 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, March 2 at 8 p.m. in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre has been revised due to scheduling complications. 

Gioachino Rossini’s La gazza ladra (The Thieving Magpie) Overture remains as the program’s opener, but Giacomo Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi has been replaced with Act I final portions (containing some of the most famous arias) from both his La bohème and Madama Butterfly operas.  Vocal soloists will be announced shortly.

In addition, George Frideric Handel’s Concerto Grosso, Op. 6, No. 5 in D Major will be replaced with Puccini’s Intermezzo from Manon Lescaut, Ottorino Respighi’s Fountains of Rome, and Giuseppe Verdi’s Overture to La forza del destino.

Eastman School of Music Professor of Conducting and Ensembles Neil Varon will conduct Exquisite Puccini. Varon’s conducting career spans 40 years and several continents, and includes an obvious passion for opera. The creator of Eastman School of Music’s Conducting Institute with the RPO, Varon made his RPO conducting debut in 2011.

"We’re so pleased that Neil will be conducting this concert,” says RPO President and CEO Charles Owens.  “He has helped us put together an exciting program showcasing the beauty and splendor of Italy and its grand opera tradition, filled with music that everyone will know and love.”

Maestro Varon will also conduct the 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, March 3 at Hochstein Performance Hall, Music from Italy. That program will include several selections from Exquisite Puccini in addition to Gabrieli’s Sonata pian e forte, Corelli’s Concerto Gross, Op. 6, No. 8, Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 4 “Italian,” and Stravinsky’s Pulcinella Suite.

Tickets for Exquisite Puccini range from $15 to $82 (with $10 student tickets available at rpo.org/students); tickets for Music from Italy are $24 or $10 for students.  Both are available in person at the Eastman Theatre Box Office (433 East Main Street) or at area Wegmans; by phone at (585) 454-2100; or online at rpo.org.  (Hochstein tickets are available at the door one hour prior to curtain.)

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra has been committed to enriching and inspiring our community through the art of music since its founding in 1922. The RPO presents up to 150 concerts a year, serving nearly 200,000 people through ticketed events, education and community engagement activities, and concerts in schools and community centers throughout the region. Notable former music directors include 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 19-year tenure with the RPO. With Michael Butterman as Principal Conductor for Education and Outreach (The Louise and Henry Epstein Family Chair) – the first position of its kind in the country – the RPO reaches 14,000 children through its specific programs for school-aged children.


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