Panama City POPS “Ports O’ Call” Itinerary
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Panama City POPS “Ports O’ Call” Itinerary

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Conductor and Music Director David Ott is at the helm and excitement is in the air as The Panama City POPS Orchestra hoists its sails on its 2016-2017 season, Saturday, October 15, 7:30pm at the Marina Civic Center, and performs “Ports O’ Call,” a unique musical tour spanning three continents courtesy of Bay County’s local orchestra.

Opening the evening and making his Panama City POPS official season debut as the orchestra’s new Conductor and Music Director, Maestro Ott will lead The POPS in a powerful array of nationalistic music.

Departing from the bayside Marina Civic Center stage, the orchestra will cruise on a musical journey of Finland, Russia, the Czech Republic and America.

“Each of the imaginative works in the evening’s program comes from the soul of its people,” remarked Ott. “The audience will experience the persuasion of Sibelius as he urges his countrymen to fight oppression in Finlandia. They’ll walk over immense, desert plains and encounter a Russian expedition and an oriental convoy in Borodin’s In The Steppes of Central Asia. They’ll be transported to the hills of central Europe to hear the lively works of Dvorak’s Slavonic Dances.”

And that’s only the first half of the tour!

Following intermission The POPS maintains its established tradition of moving from classical compositions to popular pieces, changing its heading and sailing for the Americas. First stop, Mexico, with a lively piece featuring the dancers from Tonie’s Dance Workshop of Panama City. From there the orchestra stops at ports of call across our great nation, paying tribute to our greatest cities and including some of the best entertainment music of Louis Armstrong and Broadway. Soloist Chris Klaus, currently residing in Destin and formerly of Huntsville, AL, will accompany the orchestra for an occasional souvenir sung in lyric baritone.

Ott Plots Course for the Season

“Getting to Know You” is the orchestra’s theme for the season, and The POPS’ new conductor has wasted no time reaching out to players, patrons and prospects. “I have often said that it takes three things to make music,” commented Ott. “Somebody has to write it. Somebody has to play it. Somebody has to hear it. Without an audience, the orchestra would have no meaningful reason to perform.

“Music unites us in one single purpose. As The POPS’ new conductor I have the privilege to lead an established orchestra performing in a marvelous concert hall for people of all ages who love great music.”

For his first season Ott has selected music that is colorful, exciting and dramatic. “Each piece is a celebration or reflection of life itself,” he continued. “Within each of the four concerts this season, partons will experience great symphonic music that expresses what life is all about.”

The orchestra has been in rehearsal for eight weeks. “Coming off The POPS’ recent performance of Windborne’s “The Music of Journey” at Aaron Bessant Park the musicians are anxious to return to the Marina Civic Center stage,” states POPS Board President Tammala Spencer. “Season subscriptions are on the rise and we’re pleased to know that more and more patrons are getting to know The POPS.”

Moments with the Maestro

New this year is a pre-concert lecture series which will take place at the Marina Civic Center, Mezzanine Level, 6:45-7:15pm, prior to each regular season concert. Led by the conductor in a comfortable, intimate setting, the public is invited to hear a medley of information such as the thoughts behind the selections, some of the history of the selections, and the nuances to listen and look for during the concert. The series is open to the general public. Admission is free for Baton-level subscribers and $20.00 for all other patrons.

Additional concert dates for the regular 2016-2017 POPS season are January 14, March 11 and April 29, 2017. All regular season concerts will be performed at the Marina Civic Center and will start at 7:30 pm. POPS season tickets are available on our website.
Individual tickets are available at the Marina Civic Center box office, 850-763-4696, or at www.marinaciviccenter.com. Single ticket prices: $29.50 for Adults; $20 for Seniors 65+ and Active Military; $10 for Children.