Decked out in a sequined black and silver striped jacket and leather boots, Miami Symphony Orchestra Conductor Maestro Eduardo Marturet worked the red carpet, smiling for cameras prior to the star-studded affair to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of The Moore Building in the Miami Design District.
The performance was held on NE 40 Street in front of The Moore Building where the street was adorned with red carpet. Guests sat under the stars, ready to take in the performance by "The Official Symphony Orchestra of the City of Miami," who were joined that evening by several special guest performers.
Sitting front row were music mogul and longtime supporter of MISO Emilio Estefan, DACRA Founder and CEO and Miami Design District Developer Craig Robins and his wife Jackie Soffer, Composer Karen LeFrak whose piece was part of the evening’s line up and Marturet’s wife Athina Marturet.
Estefan welcomed the crowd saying “music brings people together. Maestro and the Orchestra, thanks for working so hard, it’s wonderful to be back celebrating music.”
Brady Wood, founder of Woodhouse, the company overseeing the Moore Building’s transformation into a restaurant, executive workspace, boutique hotel and private members club to be renamed The Moore, said “I am grateful to be here with the Moore Family in attendance and be part of the storytelling and history of this building. There’s a lot to show next year when we reopen.”
Marturet then picked up his baton, kicking off the performance with the classic “Aragonaise” from Carmen Suite No. 1 by Bizet. That short piece was followed by the racing, soaring, charging “Pirates of the Caribbean” by Klaus Badelt with arrangement by Ted Ricketts. Then into “Voices of Spring” by Johann Strauss II, a piece on MISO’s repertoire that Marturet said “has more than 500,000 views on YouTube.”
At this point, the guest performers began joining MISO onstage, starting with vocalist Gail Seay, who Marturet proudly introduced by her saying “she is one of my greatest discoveries.” Seay then proceeded to tear through Stevie Wonder’s “I Wish” allowing the orchestra to accompany her and to show off versatile playing on a contemporary piece.
Then there was the big band, jazzy sound of Ted Snyder's "the Sheik of Araby," with Marturet introducing the piece by saying “now we have to go back 100 years, just like the building we’re honoring.” The music was snappy and surely got the toes tapping.
The stars came out as vocalist Jon Secada, who Emilio Estefan produced and put on the map, performed a bilingual rendition of his Grammy-winning hit “Angel” followed by the Ricky Martin hit “She’s All I Ever Had” which Secada wrote.
Secada paid homage to Estefan saying “I was taught to write songs by the best, Emilio Estefan.”
The well known foursome The Tenors – Victor Micallef, Clifton Murray, Mark Masri and Alberto Urso – chose to enter the concert via the red carpet, serenading audience members as they made their way to the stage. They performed a medley of Elvis Presley hits including “Suspicious Minds,” “You Were Always on My Mind” and “It’s Now or Never” incorporating Italian opera classics by the great Luciano Pavarotti in between. They closed out their performance with the Consuelo Velasquez standard “Besame Mucho,” easily recognizable by the Miami crowd.
Saxophonist Ed Calle, a fixture on Miami’s music scene for years joined MISO performing his hit “Strollin,” which is another on the orchestra’s repertoire list. MISO then played New York Author and Composer Karen LeFrak’s sweeping grand composition “Hall of Ocean Life” a piece that accompanies her book “Sleepover at the Museum.” LeFrank, who was in the audiences, calls herself a friend of MISO and has a second home in Miami.
The concert then came to a close with a classic by Johannes Brahms “Hungarian Dance No.1” and was followed by a surprise ending that wasn’t featured on the program. Marturet led the orchestra in West Side Story’s “Mambo,” while whipping around to face the audience in a call back of the famous song’s title.
It was a fun, familiar ending to a glorious February night in Miami, celebrating 100 years of an iconic building.