Its 19th season will be a year of dramatic themes for the Naples Orchestra and Chorus. Beginning with a holiday festival Dec. 15 and 16, the orchestra spans "Beethoven to Broadway" and "War and Peace," with its culminating performances before Easter of "The Seven Last Words of Christ."
Dec. 15 and 16: The Holiday Festival performances on Dec. 15 and 16 will feature a variety of holiday music and will present as soloists Graham Appleton, cellist, Toni-Ann Singh, soprano, and Luciano Marsalli, boy soprano. Both student singers are winners of the Naples Music Club 2012 competition.
Works on the program will include Beethoven's "Hallelujah," Holcombe's "Festive Sounds of Hannukah," Mozart's "Alleluia" from "Exultate Jubilate," and "Carol of the Bells" by McChesney, featuring the Moorings Bell Ringers led by Dick Croft.
Cellist Graham Appleton will perform a Rachmaninoff piece he orchestrated in 1999. The British seasonal resident of Naples retired early from his profession as a surgeon in Oxford to concentrate on music, and has performed with many orchestras in England and the U.S.
Feb. 16 and 17: Russian pianist Alexandra Carlson, who currently lives in Naples, will be the soloist for the February "Beethoven to Broadway" concerts, performing Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue." Carlson earned her master of piano performance and doctorate of musical arts from the St. Petersburg Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory and has performed solo, chamber and orchestral works in Russia, Europe and the U.S. Also on the program will be Beethoven's Symphony No. 5, and "The Creatures of Prometheus" Overture.
April 13 and 14: Closing the regular season is "War and Peace," featuring four soloists from Florida Gulf Coast University. The program will include Haydn's Mass in Time of War, Bach's "Dona Nobis Pacem," "The Light Cavalry Overture" by Von Suppé, and Miller's "Let There Be Peace on Earth."
The Naples Orchestra and Chorus will also perform its traditional Lenten work, DuBois' "The Seven Last Words of Christ," at area churches during the week leading up to Easter.
The Naples Orchestra and Chorus, under the direction of Robert Dale Herrema, is a volunteer organization dedicated to bringing classical and popular music to area audiences. It provides artists with opportunities to perform and awards scholarship support to aspiring young musicians.
All regular season concerts are at Golden Gate High School, 2925 Titan Way, Naples; Saturday performances are 7 p.m. and Sunday performances are at 2 p.m.
The December holiday program will offer free admission; a freewill offering will be collected.
Tickets for the February and April concerts are $15 each.
For information call 239-775-8460 or visit NaplesOrchestraandChorus.org.