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Symphoria to perform 13 free concerts this summer; renews music director's contract

Tom Magnarelli
Musicians from Symphoria at a rehearsal in April.

Symphoria, the professional symphony orchestra of central New York, will play 13 free shows around the region this summer. And the organization has renewed Music Director Lawrence Loh’s contract for four more years.

In addition to traveling around the country as a guest conductor, Loh was also selected as the music director of the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra. Which begs the question, how is he able to wave so many batons at once?

“When we’re preparing for a concert it’s all within that week," Loh said. "It’s a very intense and compact rehearsal period. It’s not like week to week we’re practicing and then weeks in the future there is a concert; it’s all in those couple days right before.”

That allows him to work around the schedule so he can pursue other opportunities. Symphoria will open its summer concert series in Chittenango Saturday. Loh said people can expect different configurations of the orchestra, like a brass quintet, and fireworks at some of the concerts.

“There’s nothing like hearing live music played by amazing musicians outside," Loh said. "It’s some of the ways some people only hear the orchestra. It’s just such a joyous and natural way to hear music. It’s such a great way of us going out into the community and not just expecting people to come to wherever we are performing but going all over the region and truly being an orchestra for central New York.”

There will be patriotic, classical and contemporary performances stretching from Oswego and Auburn to Lafayette and Rome with several stops in-between, including a Fourth of July celebration at Syracuse’s Lakeview Amphitheater.