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Florida Orchestra's big finale: 'Rite of Spring'

Tito Muñoz will lead the celebration marking Rite’s 100th anniversary.

Courtesy of the Florida Orchestra

Tito Muñoz will lead the celebration marking Rite’s 100th anniversary.

In the symphonic repertoire, it doesn't get much more exciting than the Rite of Spring, Stravinsky's ballet music that started a riot when it was first heard (and seen in Nijinsky's scandalous choreography for the Ballets Russes) on May 29, 1913, in Paris.

With 99 musicians on stage, an orchestra performance of the work can still be thrilling, and guest conductor Tito Muñoz and the Florida Orchestra take on its complex harmonies and rhythms this weekend.

It's both a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the premiere of the Rite and the finale of the orchestra's 2013-14 season.

Muñoz and his players follow a French theme with two other works premiered in Paris: Messiaen's Les Offrandes Oubliees (The Forgotten Offerings) and Debussy's La Mer.

Performances are at 8 p.m. Friday at Morsani Hall of the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, Tampa, and at 8 p.m. Saturday at Mahaffey Theater, St. Petersburg. $15-$45, with $10 tickets for students, educators, military. (727) 892-3337 or toll-free 1-800-662-7286;

John Fleming, Times performing arts critic

Florida Orchestra's big finale: 'Rite of Spring' 05/22/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 21, 2013 6:39pm]
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