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Van Wezel and Sarasota Orchestra team up for benefit concert

The storm is done, but the recovery is just beginning. And the Sarasota Orchestra and Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall are teaming up to raise money.


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The Sarasota Orchestra and Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall are teaming up to aid in the region’s recovery after Hurricane Ian. The two organizations announced Tuesday that they will stage a 7 p.m. Friday concert that will benefit the Suncoast Disaster Recovery Fund.

The concert, which will feature the orchestra playing Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man, will cost between $10-$25 and last 60-70 minutes without an intermission. The Patterson Foundation is providing a dollar-for-dollar match up to $750,000 for all donations.

“The Van Wezel and Orchestra play important and unique roles in the Sarasota arts tapestry,” said Joe McKenna, president and CEO of the Sarasota Orchestra. "This concert allows us to come together for the greater purpose of supporting our community in a time of crisis.”

The orchestra had originally planned to host a free family concert Friday night at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, but that program was cancelled due to the hurricane.

One composition from that show, the theme from The Incredibles, will be played Friday night. The orchestra is also expected to play “Summon the Heroes” by John Williams, which was originally composed for the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta.

"Coming together to renew our spirits and support our neighbors is exactly what we need to do right now,” said Mary Bensel, executive director of the Van Wezel. “We call upon our wonderful Sarasota Orchestra to again play that convening role in our community." 

This story has been updated to correct the pricing.

 

 

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Spencer Fordin

Spencer Fordin, the Observer's A+E editor, hails from New York and graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in journalism in 1999. Fordin previously worked as a sportswriter for MLB.com for 16 seasons and as a features reporter for The Cayman Compass on Grand Cayman.