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Orlando Philharmonic Presents New Work by Keith Lay


(Orlando, FL – January 21, 2016) – The Orlando Philharmonic will perform a commissioned work, “Venus and Vulcan in America,” by acclaimed Orlando composer and Full Sail faculty member Keith Lay, on its upcoming “Pictures at An Exhibition” concert on Saturday, March 26, 2016 at 8:00 PM at Bob Carr Theater, 401 W Livingston Street, Orlando, FL 32801. Tickets start at $17 and can be purchased by calling the Orlando Philharmonic box office at 407.770.0071, or by visiting

Lay’s three-movement symphony will serve as a bridge between Wagner’s Overture to Tannhaüser and Ravel’s Alborada del gracioso. The first movement opens with Wagner’s final E major chord summoning an epic fanfare. The joyful last movement presages the Alborada’s use of string pizzicatos, light melodies, and lush harmonies.

Lay says of the piece, “With this symphony, I playfully update the myth of Venus and her brilliant inventor husband Vulcan with a new ending: one in which Vulcan wins his wife’s heart. It is a mythical ‘revenge of the nerds’ edition that suits our time where intellect is mightier than the sword. By mixing fragments of Wagner with my own language and inspiration from Ravel’s orchestration, I have sought to create a showpiece for the OPO that exploits its virtuosity.”

Lay has won national awards for his work as both a producer and a composer, including the Riverside Symphony International Composition Grand Prize and a 2015 American Prize. The classical magazine Gramophone has described his composition entitled “Earth Caoine” as “unapologetically emotional,” and the New York Times’ Antonio Tommasini has hailed Lay as “a composer to watch for.” Keith is a decorated teacher, a Department Chair at Full Sail University, an active Grammy member, and a founding judge of the National Young Composers Challenge. He is also a co-founder of the Central Florida Composers Forum.

Celebrating its 23rd season in 2015-2016, The Orlando Philharmonic is Central Florida’s professional orchestra, comprised of accomplished musicians recruited from around the world. Presenting over 125 events each year, the orchestra provides captivating musical experiences and education programs to people of all ages and is committed to building a rich, sustainable future for symphonic music in Central Florida. Learn more at

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