Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra has 19th performance at UW-Whitewater

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra will be performing at UW-Whitewater for the 19th consecutive year.

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra has been performing at UW-Whitewater for the past 18 years. This year's performance will be conducted by Francesco Lecce-Chong. The performance will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 29 in the Young Auditorium.

“We’ve come for many, many years,” assistant conductor Francesco Lecce-Chong said. “There are a few places that we go to while on tour on a yearly basis, and it’s kind of become a tradition over the years to come to Whitewater.”

Lecce-Chong, 24, is “young by most standards.”

“It’s not super unusual,” Lecce-Chong said. “In the past 10 years there has been a trend in young conductors and taking them more seriously, but I am definitely still on the young side of the spectrum.”

Although Lecce-Chong is young, he knows how he wants to handle a performance. He said he likes to vary each performance when on tour.

“I think it’s a really exciting performance because it showcases the versatility of this ensemble,” Lecce-Chong said. “I’ve really been enjoying the idea of short works in the first half, and then kind of show casing what the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra is really known for in the second half.”

Soloist Scott Tisdel will perform during the first half of the show, Lecce-Chong said.

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra is composed of close to 88 musicians. Ages of the musicians range from very young professionals to people who have 30 or 40 years of experience Lecce-Chong said.

Marketing Director at the Young Auditorium, Leslie LaMuro, urges students to go. She said she believes everyone should experience a symphony orchestra at some point in their lives.

“It’s kind of the forerunner to everything,” LaMuro said. “I’m sure there are a lot of students who don’t really like classical music, but there’s something about the power of being in the room when a live symphony orchestra concert is happening. You can feel the wall of sound hitting you.”

Lecce-Chong has been conducting since he was 16, and has been the assistant conductor for the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra since September 2011. This will be Lecce-Chong’s first time performing at UW-Whitewater.

There will be a Sound Bites session at 6:30 p.m. in the lobby of the Young Auditorium. LaMuro said Lecce-Chong will be available to students and give them “really incredible insights.”

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra will be at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 29 at the Young Auditorium in the Center of the Arts. Tickets are $34, $29 or $19 for the general public, and $17, $14.50 or $9.50 for students, depending on the section.

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