A M-m-m-magnificent Season Ahead!

October 9, 2023 | Festival Boca

Festival of the Arts Boca's 18th Season will be immersed in "all things M,” including the magic of Henry Mancini, the Marvelous Mr. Mizrahi, memorable melodies, a blockbuster movie filmed in Massachusetts, “Music and the Mind,” and more, and it runs from March 1–10, 2024 at Mizner Park Amphitheater.

“From a tribute to Henry Mancini to Issac Mizrahi, this year’s Festival promises to be nothing short of magnificent,” said Joanna Marie Kaye, executive director of Festival of the Arts Boca.  “We look forward to welcoming attendees with an exhilarating blend of artistic performances, intellectual exploration, and cinematic delights.”

The Festival kicks off March 1 with a crescendo of jubilance, celebrating the centennial of the legendary maestro, Henry Mancini.  The air will be filled with timeless tunes that defined an era… think “Moon River” and “The Pink Panther,” brought to life by the renowned Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra, Monica Mancini (Henry’s daughter) on vocals, and accompanied by an exclusive visual journey through the life of the iconic composer.  The show is a family affair, produced by multi-Grammy and Emmy Award-winning Gregg Field, Monica’s husband.

Prepare to be submerged into the depths of the ocean on March 2, as the Festival brings you the Florida premiere of the legendary movie JAWS like you’ve never experienced before. The cinematic masterpiece will come alive thanks to Festival Orchestra Boca, seamlessly synchronizing with John Williams' Academy Award-winning score, most notable for the two-note ostinato that represents the shark. 

And then, there’s the Mind – the marvelous, mysterious, and multi-layered aspect of human creativity. On the afternoon of March 3, Daisy Dowling, author of Workparent and founder of the movement of the same name will explain how working parents can create successful, fulfilling lives, while raising happy kids.

Then, in an exclusive recital performance that evening, the reigning queen of sopranos, Renée Fleming, returns to Festival Boca to enthrall us with her mesmerizing voice. The five-time Grammy-winning Fleming performed at our inaugural Festival in 2007, and again in 2015, both times to sold-out, standing-room-only audiences. This will be her only performance in South Florida this season. 

As the Festival turns into Monday, Renée Fleming returns to stage to present her Music and Mind program, which explores the profound connections between music and mental well-being. As Artistic Advisor at Large to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Fleming has spearheaded a collaboration with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), with the participation of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The Sound Health initiative explores and brings attention to research and practice at the intersection of music, health, and neuroscience.

On March 5, the Festival spotlights emerging talents from South Florida with the return of the Future Stars Competition. In collaboration with the Rotary Club of Boca Raton, this performance will showcase some of the top young singers and dancers in our own backyard.

The Authors & Ideas Program continues on March 6 with Nicholas Thompson, CEO of The Atlantic, and former editor-in-chief of Wired magazine, who will unravel the mysteries of our “Wired Future” and how technology impacts our lives.  Thompson was previously the editor of NewYorker.com, and author of The Hawk and the Dove: Paul Nitze, George Kennan, and the History of the Cold War.

On March 7, American poet Richard Blanco will take the stage, offering profound insights through poetry and prose. Selected by President Obama as the fifth Presidential Inaugural Poet in U.S. history, Blanco was the youngest, the first Latinx, immigrant, and gay person to serve in that role. In 2023, Blanco was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Joe Biden from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

On March 8, you can surrender to the passion and fervor of the Barcelona Flamenco Ballet with Luxuria. The Barcelona Flamenco Ballet introduces a new flamenco concept, preserving the root of the traditional dance with a captivating infusion of jazz and contemporary ballet.  A South Florida exclusive, this performance will echo in your heart long after the stage lights dim.

On March 9, the multitalented Isaac Mizrahi will perform, “Hello Isaac,” his critically acclaimed cabaret show that promises an evening of laughter, design, and song. The fashion designer extraordinaire has directed productions of A Little Night Music and The Magic Flute for the Opera Theatre of St. Louis. And he has performed cabaret at Café Carlyle, Joe’s Pub, West Bank Café and City Winery locations throughout the U.S. With “Hello Isaac,” he brings along his six-piece jazz band, singing a range of tunes from the great American songbook, from classics to contemporary, interspersed with hilarious musings from politics to dieting to his latest Instagram obsessions.

Concluding the Festival on a high note, on March 10, the Festival Boca Jazz Orchestra, conducted by Kyle Prescott and featuring pianist Dominic Cheli, will mesmerize with “100 Years of Rhapsody in Blue,” a tribute to George Gershwin’s iconic and quintessentially American composition as it was premiered in 1924 with jazz band. The performance will also include famous American jazz and swing band classics, with everyone invited to get up and dance to close the concert.

Tickets range from $15 to $150 and will go on sale starting November 1. Admission to the Rotary Club Future Stars Competition is free.

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