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“Ode to Joy” SFSO’s Milestone Musical Performance of Beethoven’s Choral Masterpiece

February 15, 2024

South Florida Symphony Orchestra will celebrate 26 years of excellence in the arts at its “Ode to Joy” Gala on Sunday, March 3, at Broward Center for the Performing Arts (BCPA). The black-tie optional event, commencing at 5 p.m., prior to SFSO’s milestone musical performance of Beethoven’s choral masterpiece, Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 and Grand Opera Arias, will honor this year’s “Sound of Success” regional arts advocates.

“We invite patrons to join us as we mark 26 years of uniting our communities through the joy of classical music and honor those arts advocates who inspire, innovate and advocate for the arts in South Florida” said Jacqueline Lorber, President and CEO of South Florida Symphony Orchestra. “This year’s gala will recreate the ambiance of Vienna’s Romantic era as we commemorate 200 years of Beethoven’s monumental Ninth Symphony and revel in the most beloved grand opera arias while celebrating the Symphony’s triumph as the region’s largest professional orchestra.”

SFSO’s 2024 “Sound of Success” honorees from Fort Lauderdale and Miami are Marc Grossman, Marie and Robert Gallager, Francis Buckely and Bill Wolfolk (in memoriam), Robert Smith, Sandra Simon, T.J. Walsh, Robert Wilson and Peter Zupcofska, and Dr. Alan Mason.

This year’s gala will include pre-show Champagne and hors d’oeuvres on the Wendt Terraces and a 6 p.m. multi-course dinner in the Porter Riverview Ballroom. Immediately following will be the 7:30 p.m. musical milestone performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 featuring one hundred voices from South Florida Symphony Chorus, directed by Dr. Giselle Elgarresta Rios, including talented singers from Barry University, Our Lady of Lourdes Academy, the Gay Men's Chorus of South Florida, and the community. Soloists Elizabeth Caballero (soprano), Rebecca Ringle Kamarei (mezzo-soprano), Adam Diegel (tenor), and Luis Ledesma (baritone) will also perform grand opera arias from Bizet’s Carmen, Verdi’s Rigoletto, Puccini’s Turandot and Tosca, and Delibes’ Lakmé. A post-concert dessert reception will take place in the Porter Riverview Ballroom.

Following its highly acclaimed 25th anniversary season, including sold-out shows, the launch of its “Sound of Success” recognition awards, and a celebrated performance accompanying award-winning alt-rock indie vocalist Natalie Merchant, South Florida’s largest symphonic orchestra is continuing its musical journey of excellence inspiring audiences of all ages.

Tickets for SFSO’s “Ode to Joy” Gala start at $350 for the pre-show reception, dinner and post- show reception and $475 (with a prime seating concert ticket) and are available to purchase at

For additional information, visit: - Or call: (954) 522-8445. Or email:

About South Florida Symphony Orchestra (SFSO)
Founded in 1997 in Key West by Music Director Maestra Sebrina María Alfonso, the now Wilton Manors-based South Florida Symphony Orchestra (SFSO) is celebrating its 26th season. SFSO is dedicated to providing enriching cultural music experiences to residents and visitors in Monroe, Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. Guided by the belief that music is pivotal to thriving communities, SFSO brings vibrancy and engagement with the arts via innovative programming and transformative educational initiatives. A pioneer in its commitment to symphonic music for underserved communities, its Symphony in the Schools program has touched the lives of 100,000 students since its inception in 1997. SFSO was recently named the first Partner in the Arts for The Parker by the Broward Center for the Performing Arts and has been recognized by the Broward County Cultural Division as a “Major Cultural Institution,” one of only a handful of organizations to be so honored. For a performance schedule and season tickets, visit: - Call: (954) 522-8445. Or email:

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