At nearly 50 years old, the Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra is established as one of Central Kentucky's flagship performing arts organizations. But folks who catch the orchestra on the Courthouse Plaza on Sunday night will see it in the midst of renewal and reinvention.
Scott Terrell is in his second season as the orchestra's music director, succeeding George Zack, who held the baton for 38 years.
Less than two weeks after the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games end, the philharmonic will embark on a season including a re-imagined and reduced performance of Handel's Messiah, concerts leaning on gospel and rhythm-and-blues, and a world premiere performance of the orchestral version of Daniel Thomas Davis' Book of Songs and Visions, which also had its chamber premiere in Lexington.
Some of the philharmonic's most popular performances have been outdoor concerts such as the annual Independence Day celebrations at Transylvania University and in Versailles, and Sunday's concert promises to have that flavor. Terrell has come up with an equine-themed lineup including Gioachino Rossini's William Tell Overture, On the Trail from Ferde Grofé's Grand Canyon Suite, and Leroy Anderson's Horse and Buggy.
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Opening the concert will be the Central Kentucky Youth Orchestras' Symphony Orchestra, also under the baton of a second-year music director, Kayoko Dan. The CKYO is a 63-year-old group that has graduated many students to music careers around the country, including the rosters of major orchestras.