2016-2017 Season

 

God Bless The USA (November 13, 2016)

Please join us, as the North Port Symphony, led by Maestro Robert Romanski, presents an inspiring and entertaining tribute to America and its Heroes. Patriotic and American selections will honor our country and the people dedicated to preserving our freedom!

Featuring piano soloist Rod Keiser

-Playing Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin

Rod Keiser

Tampa Bay based pianist, Rod Keiser, has extensive experience in performing a variety of musical styles at a high level. He has performed as solo pianist and band member for nearly half a century. His experience ranges from his early solo classical piano recitals to gigging with rock legend Dickey Betts in the late 1960’s, to touring with the United States Air Force Band as a jazz pianist.

Keiser was twice featured as soloist with the University of South Florida Symphony Orchestra, performing Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto with Jacque Abrams. Recently, Keiser opened (by invitation) for B.B. King’s 80th birthday tour with Midnight Mike and the Big Notes.

Currently, Keiser maintains an active career as a solo pianist/keyboardist. As a soloist, his performances range from private house parties to public venues. His clients range from brides for wedding festivities, to Donald Trump, for repeat performances at his personal, south Florida estate.
His repertoire spans over 200 years, from Bach to Beatles to Bacharach and beyond.

Keiser also has a passion for arranging popular music for solo piano, and is in demand as a high level instructor.


Sounds of the Season (December 18, 2016)

Once again, we invite you to celebrate this great time of year with the North Port Symphony, in our offering of music for the Holiday Season, including sing-alongs, guest vocalist, and all the festive yuletide splendor of the North Port Performing Arts Center. We hope you keep us as a part of your family’s annual tradition, as we perform the great music of the season.

Featuring guest vocalist Paul Goodwin-Groen

Paul Goodwin-Groen

Paul Goodwin-Groen is a dual British and American citizen.

In addition to his “richly coloured bass voice,” he is often praised for his “strong stage presence” and the ability to bring depth and complexity to a role.

In the UK, he has sung at the Royal Opera House, and with the Royal Ballet, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Lyric Opera, New Devon Opera and at the Aldeburgh Festival, where he performed the role of Bottom in a 40th anniversary production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Jubilee Hall.

He made his German debut as Fafner in Das Rheingold with Theater Hof.

He has recently returned to New York from Sydney. While in Australia, he gained national attention for his strong and empathetic performance of The Officer in Sydney Chamber Opera’s production of In the Penal Colony, mounted in honour of the composer’s 75th birthday. He also appeared with Pinchgut Opera and performed in concerts at the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall and other venues around the country.

While studying and living in NYC, he worked with many local companies including the Bronx Opera, the Opera Company of Brooklyn, DiCapo Opera Theater and New York City Opera and was in the original cast of Baz Luhrmann’s La Bohème on Broadway.

Mr Goodwin-Groen studied music at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City, the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme in the UK, and with the Ezio Pinza Foundation in Italy. He also holds an MFA in Theatre Arts/Acting from Brandeis University in Boston.


Wine, Women and Song (January 29, 2017)

Inspired by the Waltz of the same name, by Johann Strauss, Jr., we bring musical tribute to the finer things in life. We will celebrate some of the most famous women in music history, as well as some of the most beautiful music ever written.

Featuring Alexa Lowrey

AlexaLowrey

Alexa Lowrey made her North Port Symphony debut in 2014 where she performed to rave reviews, returning in 2015 by popular demand. She is happy and excited to return again this year.

A native Floridian, Alexa has seemed destined for the stage since she was one year old, when she was selected out of 50 contestants to be the Ruskin Tomato Queen. She has been treading the boards ever since.

Now at age 15, she has many roles and titles in her repertoire. She is a regular at the Patel Conservatory (part of the Straz Performing Arts Center in Tampa), where she has had principal starring roles in the following: Once Upon a Mattress, A Little Princess, and Thoroughly Modern Millie. Miss Lowrey has also had featured lead parts in: Annie JR, Cinderella, Seussical the Musical JR, Alice in Wonderland JR, Beauty and the Beast JR, The Music Man, The Little Mermaid, Oklahoma, and Into The Woods.

Alexa has also performed in two professional Operas, Carmen and La Boheme, in which she was chosen by the Maestro to be the featured children’s soloist in the famous Café Scene. She was also chosen to give an introduction speech for the touring Broadway show The Addams Family.

She attends Tampa Preparatory School where she is also active in all things music. Through the Tampa Prep Chorus, she has achieved multiple Superior ratings in solo competitions, and, as a Seventh Grader, she was chosen as the judges’ favorite in the high-school category. She has been in All-State chorus two years so far, and has travelled with her chorus to take part in the famous Candlelight Concerts at EPCOT Center. At Tampa Prep, she has recently had a lead role in the musical “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” and played a homeless drug addict in their February production of “Rent.”. This year she has been in Jane Eyre and is currently in rehearsals for Tampa Prep’s February, 2017 production of The Addams Family, The Musical.

In her continuing efforts to become a “triple-threat,” Alexa also takes dance lessons (especially Tap) and studies Voice and Piano privately with acclaimed Tampa teacher, Melody Feist. On January 7, 2017, she will be taking part in a State-wide voice competition in West Palm Beach.

In addition to her whirlwind schedule, Alexa has still been able to maintain a GPA well above 4.0, and recognizes that academic success goes hand-in-hand with all other goals and achievements. She also wants to especially thank her mom for her tireless effort and support.


Conquistadors and Castanets (February 26, 2017)

 

This concert, a salute of all things Latin, will be an absolutely unforgettable afternoon of exotic melodies and thrilling beats. The North Port Symphony’s exciting program will include seductive tangos and fascinating rhythms. It’ll be a musical adventure you won’t want to miss.


Around the World in Eighty Minutes…Or So (March 26, 2017)

Journey around the world with the North Port Symphony. Your voyage will be led by Maestro Robert Romanski, as we travel to distant ports-of-call. We will feature such destinations as Russia, Spain, Italy, England, the South Pacific, and the United States, as we pay tribute to the masters. Join us in our season ending tour to exotic places, with loads of romance and history, without ever having to leave your seat.

Featuring Ewa NowakowskiEwa Nowakowski

Ewa Nowakowski was born in Poland on April 1, 1983.  At the age of 9, she was diagnosed with Stargardt ~ a genetic disease resulting in the progressive loss of eye sight.  Now, at age 33, Ewa is considered legally blind, and sees only vague objects very dimly.  However, she has the soul of a warrior, the voice of an angel, and a driving spirit that allows her to overcome even the greatest obstacles in her life.

In 2008 she graduated with honors at the Karol Szymanowski Music Academy in Katowice, Poland.  Continuing as a Faculty Vocal Instructor at the same university, she obtained a master’s degree in Opera, as well as other styles including jazz and pop.  Performing as a concert soloist in Germany, Holland, Italy, USA and Poland, she also won many international competitions in those same countries.  Ewa was a finalist in the Polish edition of “Got Talent” in 2008, and in 2014 won First Place in the premiere competition sponsored by a Polish Radio Station entitled “People With Passion”.

She has recorded tracks such as “It’s Christmas” and sang “The Prayer of Faith in Yourself” on the album “Rubicone,” which was composed especially for her.

For the past 5 years, Ewa has been working as a vocal instructor in New York City.   Ewa and her husband, Derek, and their beautiful little toddler, Victor, recently relocated to Riverview, Florida and are enjoying their first Florida winter.  Additionally, Ewa has ventured into new waters and released her very first ‘Pop’ album entitled “In Between.”