World premiere of new story set to Sergei Prokofiev’s musical masterpiece “Peter and the Wolf”
Maestro Gerard Schwarz and narrator Jon Secada embark upon a newly crafted reimagining of Sergei Prokofiev’s musical masterpiece when Palm Beach Symphony premieres “The Adventures of Peter and the Wolf” as part of the Dale A. McNulty Children’s Concert Series on Sunday, October 16 at 3 p.m. at the Eissey Campus Theater on the Palm Beach State College campus.
Maestro Schwarz, the Symphony’s music director, received a GRAMMY® nomination for his recording of “Peter and the Wolf” as it is typically performed. He and his wife, musician and author Jody Schwarz, had always dreamed of reworking the story to exclude the wolf eating the duck and make the music more integral to the story.
“Keeping the same characters: Peter, the bird, the duck, the cat, grandfather, the wolf, and the hunters, I created a new story, where each character has a name and they each play their assigned instrument,” Ms. Schwarz said. “Together they learn to accept their differences, play together as chamber musicians, and finally join to create an orchestra and make magical music together. The joy this brings them and their community at the final concert is palpable, with cheers and hoorays! These once wary and diverse characters, united in music, become lifelong friends sharing a greater purpose together than alone.”
In addition to its live concert, the Symphony will record “The Adventures of Peter and the Wolf” in two versions with the narration offered in English and Spanish and made available to PBS stations nationwide.
“The wonderful entertainer, actor and singer Jon Secada narrates the story as the Symphony illuminates it with music and musical instruments,” Maestro Schwarz said. “We focus on the story and the music equally to create something we hope will fascinate children and adults alike.”
With a career spanning more than two decades, three GRAMMY Awards, 20 million albums sold and starring roles on Broadway, Secada has released numerous hits in English and Spanish to become one of the first bilingual artists to have international crossover success. Secada’s career skyrocketed in 1991 with the release of his self-titled debut album, which sold more than six million copies worldwide, was certified triple platinum in the U.S. and reached No.15 on Billboard’s Pop album chart. The Spanish-language version of the album, “Otro Dia Mas Sin Verte,” went on to become the no. 1 Latin album of 1992 and earned Secada his first GRAMMY for “Best Latin Pop Album.” Three more top 20 Billboard hits would eventually come from that album including “Angel, I’m Free,” and “Do You Believe In Us.” His third album, “Amor,” garnered his second GRAMMY for “Best Latin Pop Performance.” In 2021, Secada and multi-GRAMMY-award winner Gonzalo Rubalcaba were nominated to the Latin Grammy, for their collaboration on “SOLOS,” a musical journey through revamped renditions of classic Boleros, composed and sung by artists of Cuban roots and influence. Beyond his own hits, Secada is widely recognized for his producing and songwriting skills including co-writing “Coming Out of the Dark” for Gloria Estefan and penning “She’s All I Ever Had” for Ricky Martin.
Internationally recognized for his moving performances, innovative programming, and extensive catalog of recordings, Maestro Schwarz is a leader both in the southeast region and globally. Locally, he is also the Music Director of the Frost Symphony Orchestra and the Distinguished Professor of Music, Conducting and Orchestral Studies at University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. Nationally, he is the Music Director of the All-Star Orchestra, Eastern Music Festival and Mozart Orchestra of New York as well as Conductor Laureate of the Seattle Symphony and Conductor Emeritus of the Mostly Mozart Festival. A prolific recording artist with 14 GRAMMY nominations, his extensive catalogue of more than 350 recordings on 11 labels includes “The Gerard Schwarz Collection,” a 30-CD box set. In his five decades as a respected classical musician and conductor, Maestro Schwarz has received hundreds of honors and accolades including nine Emmy® Awards, eight ASCAP Awards and numerous “Stereo Review” and Ovation Awards. He holds the Ditson Conductor’s Award from Columbia University, was the first American named Conductor of the Year by “Musical America” and has received numerous honorary doctorates. His memoir, “Behind the Baton”, was released by Amadeus Press in March 2017.
Jody Schwarz received her undergraduate and master’s degrees in music from The Juilliard School and an MFA in writing from Sarah Lawrence College. While at Juilliard, she participated in the Lincoln Center Institute’s Chamber Music in the School’s Program, performing hundreds of educational chamber concerts throughout New York City. In New York, she was a member of the Musica Aeterna Orchestra and the Music Today Contemporary Ensemble. In Seattle, Ms. Schwarz appeared with the Seattle Symphony’s New to Seattle series, the Seattle Opera, Seattle Chamber Music Society, the Governor’s Chamber Music Series and Music of Remembrance. Ms. Schwarz taught and performed for three summers at the Aspen Music Festival and participated in the Waterloo and Sarasota Festivals. She recorded David Stock’s “A Vanished World” and Herman Berlinski’s “Sonata for Flute and Piano.” Most recently she performed in New York at Bargemusic and is currently working on a novel. Ms. Schwarz has served as a board member of the Cornish College of the Arts, Seattle Children’s Theater, and is currently on the board of the All Star Orchestra.
The Eissey Campus Theater on the Palm Beach State College campus is located at 11051 Campus Drive in Palm Beach Gardens. Tickets are $20 with $10 student and educator tickets. Tickets may be purchased at PalmBeachSymphony.org, by calling (561) 281-0145, and at the Palm Beach Symphony Box Office weekdays from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at 400 Hibiscus Street, Suite 100, West Palm Beach.
The Palm Beach Symphony’s education programs are made possible through support from The Paul and Sandra Goldner Conservatory of Music, Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation, The McNulty Charitable Foundation, James R. Borynack and Adolfo Zaralegui/Findlay Galleries, Peter and Felicia Gottsegen/The Gottsegen Family Foundation, Mr. William Robertson, The Rickel Foundation, James H. and Marta T. Batmasian Family Foundation, Florida Power & Light, Edith Hall Friedheim/Eric Friedheim Foundation, Inc., The Spoto Family Fund, The Harry T. Mangurian, Jr. Foundation Inc., and Lois Pope.
Proud sponsors of Palm Beach Symphony include Max and Christine Ansbacher, Mrs. James N. Bay, JoAnne Berkow, David C. and Eunice Bigelow, Leslie Rogers Blum, James R. Borynack and Adolfo Zaralegui/Findlay Galleries, Braman Motorcars, Thomas and Carol Bruce, CIBC Private Wealth, The Colony Hotel, The Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation, Echo Fine Properties, Bill and Kem Frick/The Frick Foundation, Inc., Paul and Sandra Goldner, Peter and Felicia Gottsegen/Gottsegen Family Foundation, Irwin and Janet Gusman, Doris Hastings Foundation, John Herrick, Addison Hines Charitable Trust, George Hines, HSS Florida, IYC, Charles and Ann Johnson/The C and A Johnson Family Foundation, Barbara and William Karatz Fund/William Karatz and Joan G. Smith, Leonard and Norma Klorfine Foundation, Gary and Linda Lachman/The Lachman Family Foundation, Patricia Lambrecht, Lugano Diamonds, Bonnie McElveen-Hunter, The McNulty Charitable Foundation, David Moscow, NetJets, Palm Beach Design Masters, Patrick and Milly Park, PNC Private Bank, Lois Pope, Provident Jewelry, Ari Rifkin, Karen and Kenneth Rogers, Ronald Rosenfeld, David Schafer, Robin B. Smith, Dodie and Manley Thaler and the Thaler/Howell Foundation, Jerome and Carol Trautschold, and The Ann Eden Woodward Foundation/James and Judy Woods. Programs are also sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Arts and Culture, and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture.
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