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Discover delightful classical works with the Gulf Coast Chamber Orchestra!

March 25
Music & Arts Community Center
13411 Shire Ln, Fort Myers


  • Coleman Seven O’Clock Shout
  • Price Ethiopia’s Shadow in America
  • Dvorak Symphony No. 7 in D minor, Op. 70

Gulf Coast Chamber Orchestra is bringing a delightful evening of classical works to Fort Myers on March 25. The program features Valerie Coleman Seven O’Clock Shout, Price Ethiopia’s Shadow in America and Dvorak Symphony No. 7 in D minor, Op. 70.

Valerie Coleman’s Seven O’Clock Shout was commissioned by the Philadelphia Orchestra in 2020 and written to honor frontline workers in the COVID-19 pandemic. This lively work, which treats us to a huge variety of sound colors. Coleman comments, “To me, Seven O’Clock Shout is a declaration of our survival. It is something that allows us our agency to take back the kindness that is in our hearts and the emotions that cause us such turmoil. . . We cheer on the essential workers with a primal and fierce urgency to let them know that we stand with them and each other.”

Price wrote Ethiopia’s Shadow in America before 1933; its score was lost for several decades and recovered in 2009. There is no record of a performance earlier than one given by the University of Arkansas Symphony Orchestra in January 2015. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic delaying performances of her music around the world, she has rapidly become one of the most widely programmed American composers of her generation. Given a vast catalog, boundless creativity, and an engrossing life story, it’s easy to understand why.

The Symphony No.7 by Antonín Dvorak is a work of unprecedented expressive power. It was composed at the height of his powers, and its composition was marked by a number of unusual features. The symphony’s three movements are performed without a break, and the overall form of the piece reflects its programmatic content: it begins with a long, solemn introduction that depicts the “dark forest” mentioned in the composer’s program note; this is followed by a lively scherzo which represents the two main characters’ escape from their pursuers; finally comes a lyrical slow movement (the third movement) depicting the prospects for happiness that await them.

April 1
Music & Arts Communit Center
13411 Shire Ln, Fort Myers


  • Jessie Montgomery Starburst
  • Peter Boyer Three Olympians
  • Jennifer Higdon Dance Card
  • Christopher Theofanidis Visions & Miracles
  • Josef Suk Serenade for Strings, Op. 6

The string section is the heart of any orchestra and this concert showcases the Gulf Coast Chamber Orchestra’s elite string section. Featured on this concert is music by some of the greatest living composers, including Musical America’s Composer of the Year, Jessie Montgomery.

Starburst – this brief one-movement work for string orchestra is a play on imagery of rapidly changing musical colors. Exploding gestures are juxtaposed with gentle fleeting melodies in an attempt to create a multidimensional soundscape. A common definition of a starburst: “the rapid formation of large numbers of new stars in a galaxy at a rate high enough to alter the structure of the galaxy significantly” lends itself almost literally to the nature of the performing ensemble who premieres the work, The Sphinx Virtuosi.

Peter Boyer’s Three Olympians is an impressive work that showcases the characteristics of three of the twelve Olympians. Boyer’s modernist style is striking through his orchestrations and use of just a string orchestra. From Apollo’s charm, to Aphrodite’s love and Ares war power, Three Olympians is a real tour-de-force of the Greek Gods.

Dance Card is a celebration of the joy, lyricism and passion of a group of strings playing together! This piece is made up of five movements, each of which is designed so that it can also be played as a separate work. From a string fanfare, through gentle serenades, and actual wild dances, the musicians get a chance to highlight their soloistic and ensemble playing. This work reflects the deep commitment that string players bring to their music making, not only in the many years of learning to play their instruments, but also in the dedication manifested in gorgeous music-making as an ensemble.

Visions and Miracles is in three movements, marked by programmatic titles. Movement one, “All Joy Wills Eternity,” derives from Friedrich Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra (1891). The second movement, “Peace Love Light YOUMEONE” takes its name from the inscription on Timothy Leary’s crematorial urn. “I Add Brilliance to the Sun,” the title of movement three, is purportedly from a medieval troubadour. The piece has a Moorish sound, inspired by Spanish medieval music, in fast and alternating beats of two and three.

The Serenade for Strings was written in 1892. After a partial premiere in 1893 and a full premiere in 1895, the work quickly became popular, and got the nice endorsement of Brahms. It’s in 4 movements: Andante con moto, Allegro ma non troppo e grazioso, Adagio, Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo presto.

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