Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Rock 'n' Roll with the HSO at Talcott Mountain

It’ll be “Time to Rock” at the Talcott Mountain Music Festival when music industry legend Victor Vanacore (left) kicks off the Hartford Symohony Orchestra's summer series 7:30 pm Wednesday, July 14 at the Performing Arts Center at Simsbury Meadows.

Starting with the fabulous sounds of '50s classic rock, the HSO will take a musical tour through rock and roll’s greatest hits, including songs by Marvin Gaye, The BeeGees, Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, The Beach Boys, Gloria Estefan, The Beatles, and more. Joining Vanacore and the HSO will be vocalists Tony Galla and Alexx Daye.

A native of New Haven, Grammy Award-winner Vanacore has had a long history of collaborations with the biggest names in the entertainment industry, including the Jackson Five, Johnny Mathis and Barry Manilow. Vanacore served as the musical director, arranger, and opening act for Ray Charles, whose only platinum album, “Genius Loves Company,” features Vanacore’s orchestral arrangements, including the Grammy-winning “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”

As a composer/arranger, Vanacore’s recent work has included original music for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Public Television Network, Berklee College of Music, and music based on the texts of Pope John Paul II, composed at the request of Placido Domingo. His television credits include music for “Survivor,” the 2005 Academy Awards show, Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice,” and “American Idol.”

Internationally acclaimed singer-songwriter Galla was discovered while recording his first hit single, “In Love” (Swan Records), which became a national cult hit in the US and throughout Europe. As lead singer of the blues band Raven, he can be heard on their two albums "Live at the Inferno" and "Raven" as well on the single, “Feeling Good.” He has performed for the soundtracks of "The X Files," "The L Word," "La Dolce Vita," "The Tonight Show" with Jay Leno, "My Blue Heaven," "The Wedding Planner," "Mambo Kings," "Naked Gun 1," "Seventh Heaven," "China Beach" and "Phineas and Ferb."

A native of St. Louis, Daye has shared the stage with many artists including Patti LaBelle, Vesta Williams, Peabo Bryson, Seal, Jonathan Butler, and Brian Culbertson. She has been the featured artist at jazz concerts nation wide such as the Newport Jazz Festival and the international Guitars and Saxes

Tickets range in price from $150-$1420 (subscriptions for the series); $20-$45 (single ticket). Lawn tickets for kids 12 and under are $5. Discounts are available for tickets purchased in advance. For more ticketing information, call 860-244-2999 or visit

Festival Information: Gates open at 6 pm for all Talcott Mountain Music Festival concerts. In the case of severe weather, rain dates for each concert will be the night after the scheduled concert at the same time. Open to all ticket holders, the HSO Education Tent is open from 6 to 7:15 pm; kids can enjoy free activities such as face-painting, crafts, games, and the “Instrument Zoo.”

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Lauren Yarger with playwright Alfred Uhry at the Mark Twain House. Photo: Jacques Lamarre)

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