From The Podium: Look Back on January Family Matinee

Published on: February 4, 2016

PSO_lionOur Family Matinee Series this past January took a giant leap forward with our presentation of Fairy Tales and Scary Tails. The great music of Saint-Saens, Mussorgsky, Tchaikovsky and Dukas were all showcased wonderfully through fine performances by the PSO. The imagery and narration of poetry and stories by yours truly and Ogden Nash added to the experience though the dramatic excellence of narrator Kim Pereira.

Kim said to me afterward how much he enjoyed the performance and how the music was front-and-center and the words and pictures enhanced, but didn’t distract from the musical experience. I agree. I was particularly pleased by the audience’s attention to the music. Unlike in movies, where music takes a back seat role to enhance the image, in this concert, the roles were reversed, unlocking music’s ability to inspire.

I always enjoy the festive atmosphere of these concerts and the imaginative costumes worn by both children and adults. It is a fun way to battle the winter blahs while enjoying a meaningful artistic event with the entire family. I was thrilled to see how many children were more fascinated by being close to a live orchestra than by merely being on stage during the costume parade.

The most important thing for me at the Family Matinee is to see FAMILIES enjoying music together. This is the beginning of building, or rebuilding, culture across generations in America. The musical treasures that we share together become our treasured memories – and music’s magic is the medium.

I hope you will enjoy the rest of the PSO’s 118th Season, beginning with Romance in February!



George Stelluto, Music Director of the Peoria Symphony Orchestra

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