Talk about a season! Fall is that time of year when we get over doing summer yardwork but gear up to get busy for the holidays. In its own way, the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra is no exception.

The musicians are going to be quite occupied, launching a world-influenced program beginning Sept. 12 that includes everything from the thrilling notes of Russian composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky to the American works of George Gershwin, the tango sounds of Argentina and the call of Bollywood, India’s answer to Hollywood. For good measure, a shout-out to “The Godfather” is thrown in as well.

It all happens at the venerable Fulton Opera House, 12 North Prince Street, Winter Center at Millersville University, the Ware Center on Lancaster’s North Prince Street, Barshinger Center for the Musical Arts at Franklin & Marshall College and American Music Theatre on Route 30 near Route 896.

That’s a pretty full plate, but that’s ok with Maestro Stephen Gunzenhauzer, who marks his 35th year with the LSO, founded in 1947.

“To me, the music is meant to be a challenge,” said Gunzenhauser.

Under Gunzenhauser’s direction, the symphony has enjoyed a reputation for mixing the traditional with something different.

“There’s something very special,” he said of this and past seasons, in which the music director said “it’s very easy to do the standard repertoire.” That means he takes no shortcuts.

Yet the standard is represented, and well, on Saturday, Sept. 12 when the LSO kicks off Tchaikovsky’s “Rococo Variations” at the Fulton, an elegant but fun work, evoking the days of old Russia during the age of the tsars, and pairs it with chocolate tasting orchestral piece in four movements in the new “Chocolats Symponiques” by young Canadian composer Maxime Goulet.

“Variations” was written for the cello, and the LSO’s principal cellist, Lukasz Szyrner, will bring energy to the performance and Goulet’s “Chocolats Symponiques” will bring unique sweetness. Rounding out the performance will be presentations of Mozart’s Symphony No. 35 and Prokofiev’s “Classical” Symphony. The performance begins 3 p.m. There is also a concert 8 p.m. Saturday evening and 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13.

For more information, and for other upcoming concerts in this series, visit www.lancastersymphony.org or call 717-397-7425 for tickets 717-291-4420 for subscriptions.

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