Rossini's William Tell Overture is probably one of the most frequently performed pieces of classical music, and its sound is known to ears young and old.
It has been used in numerous television ads, including Reebok athletic shoes and the Honda Civic, cartoons such as Bugs Bunny, and is even the theme song for the classic television show The Lone Ranger.
Likewise, Franz Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 on piano is well known from its frequent use in animated cartoons, such as Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse and Tom and Jerry.
Popular classical tunes such as these will be featured in the Hernando Symphony Orchestra's "Music for All Ages" spring concerts, with performances Saturday at the Hernando High School Performing Arts Center in Brooksville and Sunday and Tuesday at Springstead Theater in Spring Hill.
"We chose these specifically because we want younger people to come and listen to music they can relate to," said orchestra conductor Wayne Raymond. "Children know these pieces, but don't typically realize it's classical music."
The concert program also features Disney Magic, Pirates of the Caribbean, Barnum and Bailey's Favorite and a Beatles medley. In addition, Raymond said, music from the movie Titanic will be performed as a tribute to the 100th anniversary of its sinking, as well as John Williams' Olympic Spirit to welcome the 2012 Summer Olympics.
The concerts will include a solo performance on the violin by 15-year-old Mariah Dixon. She is a member of the orchestra's first violin section.
"Mariah has been with us for about four or five years now," Raymond said. "She is a very good player."
The concerts wrap up the orchestra's formal 2011-12 season. However, the orchestra will present its annual "Tunes at Twilight" outdoor concert at the Hernando Beach Club on April 29.
"The last few years, the weather has been perfect, and everyone has just a wonderful time," Raymond said.
He said attendance nearly doubles each year, with last year's concert drawing more than 200.
As the season wraps up, orchestra members are looking forward to a new concert venue for 2012-13 at Stage West Community Playhouse in Spring Hill, where all performances will be in weekend blocks (Friday, Saturday and Sunday). Season tickets are available for $30 at Stage West, and include three concert series.
"In the fall, we are full-time at Stage West," Raymond said. "We haven't even started yet, and it's already been a wonderful collaboration."