The Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra opens its new season with “American Visionaries” at the Victory Theatre on Saturday, September 25 beginning at 7 PM. Masks are required at the Victory Theatre at this time, but no social distancing will be in place.

The evening begins with River City Re-Awakened, by Paul Dooley, a work commissioned and written especially for the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra and the City of Evansville. Two of the most popular works for symphony orchestra will also be performed; Gershwin’s jazzy Rhapsody in Blue performed by award winning pianist Fei-Fei and the iconic “Symphonic Dances” from Bernstein’s West Side Story. The evening concludes with Dances in the Canebrakes by Florence Price, based on old-style ballroom dance music and Joplin-like rags. A special musical surprise honoring healthcare workers and people lost to COVID-19 will be performed by the Evansville Philharmonic Chorus.

Paul Dooley is one of the most prolific and performed composers in America today. His path has embraced not only his Western Classical heritage, but also a cross-cultural range of contemporary music, dance, art, technology, and the interactions between the human and natural worlds. His music has been described as "impressive and beautiful" by American composer Steve Reich. For more information, view https://www.pauldooley.net/bi.

Praised for her “bountiful gifts and passionate immersion into the music she touches” – The Plain Dealer, pianist Fei-Fei is a winner of the Concert Artists Guild Competition and a top finalist at the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. She continues to build a reputation for her poetic interpretations, charming audiences with her “passion, piquancy and tenderness” and “winning stage presence” – Dallas Morning News, both in the US and internationally, including her native China.

Fei-Fei’s recent concert season took her across the globe in concerto performances, recitals, and chamber music collaborations alike. Highlights include performances with the Baden-Baden Philharmonic touring in Germany, a tour of Spain with the New York Youth Symphony, as well as concerto engagements with the Costa Rica National Symphony Orchestra, Columbus Symphony, Big Springs Symphony and Symphony in C.

Additional career highlights include performances with the Kansas City Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Calgary Philharmonic, Aspen Music Festival Orchestra, Spokane Symphony, Denver Philharmonic, Anchorage Symphony, and the Juilliard Orchestra. Internationally, she has performed with Germany’s Rostock and Baden-Baden Philharmonic Orchestras, and in China with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, China National, and Shenzhen Symphony Orchestras.

Fei-Fei was showcased prominently as a Cliburn finalist in the documentary film, Virtuosity, about the 2013 Cliburn Competition. She is currently based in New York City.

Purchase tickets at www.evansvillephilharmonic.org or call the EPO Ticket Office at (812) 425-5050, Ext 300. For questions and purchases, the box office is available between 10 AM and 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday. All full-time students can attend this season’s concerts free (while available) and can receive the free ticket by calling the EPO Ticket Office or picking up at the Victory Theatre Sixth Street Entrance Box Office. Discounted tickets are available for age 18-39 attendees and can be purchased for $15 and $20 online at www.evansvillephilharmonic.org/club1839/. Discounted tickets are available for seniors and military by calling the EPO Ticket Office.

Concert Sponsor is Kenny Kent Lexus. Guest Artist Sponsor is Martha & Merritt DeJong Foundation.
Chorus is sponsored by Friends of the Chorus.

Roger Kalia will host a free informative pre-concert talk, “Symphony Happy Hour,” taking place at Myriad Brewing, located at 101 SE 1st St #1 in Evansville, on Wednesday, Sept 22 at 5:30 PM. The discussion will provide interesting and unique facts about the works as well as different musical aspects to listen for. Several EPO musicians will perform excerpts from the “American Visionaries” program, as well.