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Hernando Symphony Orchestra puts modern mark on holiday favorites

Hernando Symphony Orchestra conductor Wayne Raymond says this year’s Christmas program, “A Modern Holiday,” will include three Mannheim Steamroller tunes. “It’s exciting to do something different,” Raymond said.

KERI WIGINTON | Times (2007)

Hernando Symphony Orchestra conductor Wayne Raymond says this year’s Christmas program, “A Modern Holiday,” will include three Mannheim Steamroller tunes. “It’s exciting to do something different,” Raymond said.

SPRING HILL — The sounds of Christmas changed 25 years ago with the release of Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, bringing a modern twist to holiday classics such as Deck the Halls and Stille Nacht (Silent Night).

Some of those sounds will come alive when the Hernando Symphony Orchestra kicks off its 26th season Tuesday night with "A Modern Holiday" Christmas concert at Springstead Theater.

"It's exciting to do something different," said orchestra conductor Wayne Raymond. "We'll be doing three Mannheim Steamroller tunes. … It will be fun to do these."

The orchestra will perform Chip Davis' arrangements of Deck the Halls, Stille Nacht and Christmas Lullaby. The audience will also get to enjoy holiday favorites such as Have a Holly Jolly Christmas, Let There Be Peace On Earth, Bells of Christmas and Winter Wonderland.

"We've updated a few pieces," Raymond said. "Holly Jolly Christmas will have a Dixieland part added."

Raymond said the orchestra will also add a few new pieces to its repertoire, including a performance of Candles and Dreidels, in tribute to Hanukkah.

"It is a fabulous arrangement," he said, "but it's also quite challenging."

Throughout the years, the orchestra's holiday concerts typically have showcased local talent and included guest soloists. This year's concert, however, will not. It will instead be performed solely by the orchestra — and the audience.

"We'll have a sing-along with some of the holiday favorites," Raymond said. "It will be a fun time."

In addition to Tuesday night, there will be two other performances of the orchestra's Christmas concert: Dec. 6 at Springstead Theater and Dec. 12 at the Hernando Performing Arts Center at Hernando High School in Brooksville.

Additional productions during the orchestra's 2009-10 season will include the winter concert, "Big Bands Return — Tribute to Lee Cave," Feb. 21 and 23 at Springstead Theater and Feb. 20 at the Hernando Performing Arts Center, and the "Hurray for Broadway" spring concerts, which will be April 25 and 27 at Springstead Theater and April 24 at the Hernando Performing Arts Center.

FAST FACTS

If you go

What: Hernando Symphony Orchestra "A Modern Holiday" Christmas concert

When: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and 2 p.m. Dec. 6 at Springstead Theater, 3300 Mariner Blvd., Spring Hill; 7:30 p.m. Dec. 12 at Hernando Performing Arts Center at Hernando High School, 700 Bell Ave., Brooksville.

Admission: Individual tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for students (grades K-12). Season tickets are $30.

Information: Call (352) 597-9555 or visit hernandosymphony.com.

Hernando Symphony Orchestra puts modern mark on holiday favorites 11/26/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 10:33pm]

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