Polish Baltic Philharmonic coming to the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts

Polish Baltic Philharmonic

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio – As part of the Southern Ohio Performing Arts Association/Shawnee State University season, the Polish Baltic Philharmonic will be performing at 7:30 p.m. on Mon., Feb. 1 at the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts.

Direct from Gdansk, Poland, the Philharmonic plans to perform a mixed program including the Overture to Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman, Chopin’s “Piano Concerto No. 2,” and Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 5.” The last piece is familiar nearly to everyone with its iconic “Ta-ta-ta-taaa” opening that represents the idea of fate knocking at your door.

The Polish Baltic Philharmonic is the largest music institution in northern Poland and has flourished over the decades despite the tumultuous history of their home city of Gdansk, alternatively known as Danzig, as ownership passed between Poland and Germany. After World War II, Gdansk’s shipyards became the birthplace of the Solidarity movement, which lead to the end of the Communist rule of Poland.

One might think these periods of turbulence may have weakened the arts in Gdansk, yet quite the opposite happened. The Philharmonic represents a fusion of these international and historical influences, yet still captures the pride of contemporary Poland and Baltic Sea coast. This sense of pride and struggle that are so passionately portrayed in their musical performance distinguishes the Polish Baltic Philharmonic as a world-class symphony.

“We are fortunate to have the rare opportunity to present an ensemble like the Philharmonic,” said Rhoni Maxwell-Rader, President of SOPAA Board. “Normally, we might not be able to afford such an accomplished and storied symphony, but we were able to take advantage of the opportunity of the Philharmonic traveling between two cities.”

Tickets are $33 for the general public, $29 for seniors, $25 for SSU students and $15 for children the age of 12 and under. Upper tier tickets are available at discounted prices.

Tickets and additional information are available from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the McKinley Box Office, by phone at 740.351.3600, or online through Ticketmaster at http://www.ticketmaster.com/venue/41868.

The Polish Baltic Philharmonic performance is sponsored through the Scioto Foundation.

The 2015-16 SOPAA/SSU season is presented with the support of the Ohio Arts Council, an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, the City of Portsmouth, OH, The SSU Development Foundation, the Martings Foundation and the Scioto Foundation.