2014-2015 Performance Schedule


Music Events

Single tickets for Music events are $8.00 for adults; $4 for students. Music Under the Stars is free.
Music Under the Stars

Music Under the Stars

Thursday, October 23, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
L.N. Pipkin Bandshell

Come hear a celebration of autumn as FSC’s Symphony Band, conducted by Jo Jossim, and the FSC Jazz Ensemble, directed by Paul Butcher, perform an evening of instrumental music beneath starlit skies at the Pipkin Bandshell. This annual audience favorite features a variety of works from the wind ensemble and jazz repertoire, certain to please.
 Rain Location: Branscomb Auditorium

FSC Chamber Singers

Back to Basics

Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Life tends to become more complicated as we grow older. From American folk tunes passed down for generations to Mozart’s The Alphabet Song teaching us how to learn our letters, we are reminded that sometimes it is important just to get back to basics. The FSC Chamber Singers under the direction of Beth Gibbs present this evening of simply charming choral music.


Bandtastic III: Band Day Encore

Friday, November 7, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Featuring an array of large and small ensembles of every kind with diverse repertoire ranging from classical and jazz genres to popular and rock favorites, this annual event promises to take your breath away. Conceived and directed by Jo Jossim, director of bands, this virtual kaleidoscope of musical styles and colors moves at a pace guaranteed to keep you completely enthralled.

FSC Chamber Singers


Tuesday, November 18, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

One of John Rutter’s most beloved works for choir and orchestra, the Magnificat is a beautiful expression of this ancient and highly revered text. The FSC Concert Choir, under the direction of Beth Gibbs, and the FSC Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Kira Omelchenko, combine forces for an evening of musical “adoration” that highlights both ensembles, individually and in collaboration.

Christmas Gala

Holiday Reflections: The Christmas Gala

Saturday, December 6, 2014 - 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Each year, FSC’s Department of Music shares the best of the season’s sacred and secular music with the community in this festive performance by students, faculty, and guests. We invite you to join us in beautifully decorated Branscomb Auditorium to enjoy the sights and sounds of the holidays as we reflect on the meaning of the season through the presentation of old favorites and new surprises.

Brian Brink

A Music Faculty Showcase, Edition 2015

Monday, February 16, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

FSC’s music faculty comprises artists who have continued their performance careers, and this annual Showcase allows them to demonstrate their mastery. Included in this program will be performances from resident ensembles such as the Hollingsworth Trio and the Faculty Brass Quintet, and performances featuring duo pianos, voice, and classical guitar. The wide range and stunning talent of the FSC faculty will be on full display in this unforgettable night of music.

FSC Chamber Singers

For Love of Music

Tuesday, February 24, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

There are many reasons why we all love music: to lift our spirits, enhance a special moment, or simply provide pure enjoyment. This concert will explore why we sing and want to share what moves us in this beautiful art. Experience the joy as the FSC Chamber Singers, under the direction of Beth Gibbs, perform this diverse program of choral tributes to the power of musical expression.

La Perichole

La Périchole (In English)
by Jacques Offenbach

Friday, March 20, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Offenbach was king of the Parisian operetta, and this delightful production, performed by FSC’s Opera Theatre and Orchestra, led by Mark Thomsen and Kira Omelchenko, bubbles like champagne. It tells the tale of two penniless street singers, La Périchole and her lover, Paquillo. Entering the story is the lecherous Viceroy of Peru, who lusts after the title character, and comedy ensues as complications and romantic intrigues arise in this clash of wits between the eccentric Viceroy and the resourceful La Périchole.

FSC Jazz Ensemble

Celebrate Jazz: The FSC Jazz Ensemble

Thursday, March 26, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

The FSC Jazz Ensemble brings youthful enthusiasm and savvy musicianship to an appealing repertoire of jazz, from traditional to modern. Under the expert leadership of Paul Butcher, director of jazz studies, the Ensemble gives an entertaining performance of the many moods of America’s original musical genre. This is a program sure to leave you smiling.

FSC Concert Choir

Classical Mastery

Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Franz Joseph Haydn wrote many spectacular masses, especially at the end of his life. Under the baton of Beth Gibbs, the FSC Concert Choir will perform one such late Mass, the Missa in Angustiis, also known as the “Lord Nelson Mass.” In addition, other works by Haydn and his contemporaries will be presented in this evening of music celebrating the beauty and mastery of the Viennese Classical Era.

Other Side of Souza

The Other Side of Sousa

Thursday, April 16, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Although most notable as a composer of marches, John Phillip Sousa also composed many other types of music. During his lifetime, he produced over two hundred works, including symphonic poems, suites, songs, and operettas. FSC’s Symphony Band and Jo Jossim share the other side of Sousa, because there is more to him than meets the march!

FSC Orchestra

Orchestral Perspectives

Thursday, April 23, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Concluding her first year as conductor of FSC’s Symphony Orchestra and director of strings, Kira Omelchenko leads her ensemble through an evening of music designed to showcase the diversity of the orchestral repertoire. Please join this talented conductor as she presents the rich range of timbres, expression, and styles characteristic of this treasured musical medium.


Special Events

See information under each listing for Special Event ticket prices.

Florida Dance Theatre

An Evening of Classical Ballet

Thursday, November 6, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

In celebration of the grand opening of the Wynee Warden Dance Studio, please join us for an exclusive presentation of classical ballet performances by the acclaimed Florida Dance Theatre. The accomplished members of Lakeland’s premier dance company will showcase the traditional techniques and exquisitely precise forms of classical ballet through select pieces from revered and time-honored works such as audience favorites Swan Lake and Don Quixote.

Joining the Florida Dance Theatre for this special evening will be international ballet stars Katia Garza and her husband, Israel Rodriguez, both veterans of Ballet de Monterrey as well as the Orlando Ballet, where Ms. Garza recently completed a 10-year run as prima ballerina. In what promises to be a stirring performance by these two consummate dancers, the couple will perform one of the most romantic excerpts in the ballet repertoire, the pas de deux from Le Corsaire. Having rescued the Greek slave girl Medora from sale to Seyd-Pasha’s harem, the pirate Conrad brings her to his hidden grotto, where they fall in love and dance the pas de deux dance to the music of Adolphe Adam.

The Evening of Classical Ballet marks the beginning of a new era of exceptional dance programming at Florida Southern College, and we hope you will join us for a joyful evening in commemoration of this auspicious occasion.


Ticket Information: Admission to this performance is included in the Festival of Fine Arts season ticket. Single tickets will be available at the FFA Box Office for $18 adults, $9 students.

Florida Dance Theatre

Florida Dance Theatre presents Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker

Saturday, December 20, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 21, 2014 - 2:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Lakeland’s own professional dance company, the Florida Dance Theatre, brings its celebrated annual production of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker to the stage of Branscomb Auditorium. Come see this timeless holiday classic, performed with charm and perfection by the dynamic dancers of this impressive ensemble in a breathtaking production featuring colorful scenery, dazzling costumes, and entrancing choreography.

A holiday tradition for generations of families, the ballet tells the story of Clara and her magical journey with her beloved nutcracker prince through a world of life-sized dolls, colossal mice, and delicate snowflakes to the glorious Land of Sweets, home of the Sugar Plum Fairy. In this joyous land, they encounter colorful dancers of many nationalities as well as twirling candy canes and waltzing flowers vibrantly brought to life.

As a special treat, community children will join the professional dancers of the Florida Dance Theatre, making this an especially family-friendly, feel-good performance event. Adding a distinct holiday flair to the season’s Festival of Fine Arts performances, this production is without a doubt the perfect seasonal gift to the entire family. Please join us and enjoy the music, dance, and spectacle that define the holiday season for families around the world.


Ticket Information: Admission to this performance is included in the Festival of Fine Arts season ticket. Single tickets will be available at the FFA Box Office for $18 adults, $9 students.

La Traviata

Imperial Symphony Orchestra presents A Night at the Opera: La Traviata

Saturday, January 17, 2015 - 7:00 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

The Imperial Symphony Orchestra, in collaboration with Florida Southern College, is pleased to present this year’s annual Night at the Opera, Verdi’s La Traviata, the timeless tale of desire and devotion that has captivated audiences for more than 150 years. Based on the play La Dame aux Camélias, adapted from a novel by Alexandre Dumas, fils, this most romantic of operas tells the heart-wrenching story of Violetta Valéry, a high-spirited Parisian courtesan.

Labeled by society as la traviata, a woman gone astray, Violetta meets young Alfredo, with whom she truly falls in love, only to be persuaded by his father to perform the ultimate selfless act of giving him up to save the family’s reputation. In the end, her broken heart and the disease that ravages her body bring her to an untimely and tragic death­—in the arms of her beloved.

Reuniting an artistic staff that includes Conductor James Caraher, Director Mark Thomsen, and Chorus Master Beth Gibbs, this lavish production will feature nationally acclaimed singers in the roles of Violetta and Alfredo. Complementing the artistic partnership between the ISO and FSC will be performances by the extraordinarily talented students, faculty, and alumni of the College as well as members of the community. Whether you have always loved opera or are just beginning, La Traviata is the show to see.


Ticket information: Tickets for this event will be handled by the Imperial Symphony Orchestra (ISO office: 863.688.3743; website: www.imperialsymphony.org).

Hilary Kole

Hilary Kole and Big Band: Over the Rainbow

Thursday, January 22, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Relive and encounter anew the timeless wonder of the music made famous by legendary entertainer Judy Garland in a tribute to her art and legacy, Over the Rainbow. In this performance, the remarkable contemporary songstress Hilary Kole, in collaboration with her popular Big Band, captures the spirit and beauty of “America’s Treasure” in stunning arrangements of such classics as “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” “The Trolley Song,” “As Long As He Needs Me,” “Look for the Silver Lining,” and many others made famous by the singer Fred Astaire called “the greatest entertainer that ever lived.”

Hailed by critics as a contemporary “musical marvel” (Rex Reed, New York Observer), Hilary Kole is busily establishing her own place among nationally and internationally known singers as an incomparable talent. From engagements in New York’s Rainbow Room, the Oak Room at the Algonquin Hotel, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and Town Hall to performances with major symphony orchestras and international jazz festivals from Japan to Scotland, Italy, and Montreal, she is fast becoming the singer of choice to headline performances on stages worldwide.

Come join us in a walk down memory lane. Celebrate the art of American legend Judy Garland through the artistry of a legend-in-the-making, Hilary Kole.


Ticket information: Admission to this performance is included in the Festival of Fine Arts season ticket. Single tickets will be available at the FFA Box Office for $18 adults, $9 students.

Tango Buenos Aires

Tango Buenos Aires: Song of Eva Perón

Saturday, March 28, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

This internationally renowned company uses the art of tango to journey through the life of one of Argentina’s most important and compelling historical figures, Eva Perón. Celebrated for their impeccable technique, dramatic flourish, unbridled passion, and above all, authentic interpretations of the tango, the dancers, singers, and instrumentalists of Tango Buenos Aires capture the essence of this larger-than-life figure in a sparkling and poignant spectacle.

From her impoverished childhood in the slums of Buenos Aires to her position as one of Argentina’s most powerful and influential figures, Eva Perón was an often polarizing—yet always colorful—cultural icon not only in her own country, but throughout the world. Tango Buenos Aires, in turn, has become one of Argentina’s great cultural exports, equally well-known throughout the Americas, Europe, and the Far East as the most authentic and uncompromising representative of the tango.

This unique presentation of dance and music was inspired by the most important woman in Argentinian history. Experience the cultural phenomenon that is the tango, born in the dance halls of nineteenth-century Argentina, but now embraced by dance enthusiasts everywhere as one of the most highly regarded classic dance forms.


Ticket information: Admission to this performance is included in the Festival of Fine Arts season ticket. Single tickets will be available at the FFA Box Office for $18 adults, $9 students.


Faculty Artist Series

The Faculty Art Series is free

David Coash

Percussion Strikes Again

David Coash, percussion

Monday, September 29, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

Having captured the admiration of audiences in previous guest appearances on the Festival of Fine Arts, percussionist David Coash takes the stage this season in his own recital. A highly regarded member of the Florida Orchestra, Dr. Coash is a well-known performer and pedagogue, thoroughly engaged in sharing his love for such an intriguing musical medium. This performance promises to reveal the multiple dimensions of all things percussion.

All That Brass

All That Brass

The FSC Faculty Brass Quintet

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Anne MacGregor Jenkins Recital Hall

This popular faculty ensemble of outstanding brass musicians presents an exciting interactive evening of eclectic repertoire for this chamber combination of two trumpets, trombone, horn, and tuba. Already known for their superb musicianship, creative programming, and enjoyable style, the quintet will offer a performance sure to engage, educate, and entertain.

Fernando Traba

Bassoonist Extraordinaire

Fernando Traba, Bassoon

Wednesday, November 12, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
Anne MacGregor Jenkins Recital Hall

Principal bassoonist with the Sarasota Orchestra, Fernando Traba is a consummate chamber musician, orchestra player, and soloist. Tonight’s performance of works for bassoon will reflect the versatility and appeal of this mysterious instrument—as well as the diversity of repertoire. You will be struck by the artistry, technical brilliance, sensitivity, and passion of this wonderful faculty artist.

Rimma Bergeron-Langlols

Encore: The Violin Artistry of Rimma!

Rimma Bergeron-Langlois, violin

Thursday, January 29, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Anne MacGregor Jenkins Recital Hall

Last season, Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra concertmaster and violin virtuoso Rimma Bergeron-Langlois stunned the audience with a breathtaking artistic performance in her Faculty Artist Series debut. By popular demand, she returns this season with her dynamic collaborative pianist, Keiko Andrews, in another evening of incomparable violin repertoire. Rimma is fast becoming synonymous with musical royalty—and she is right here at FSC!

Diane Stahl

Brush Up Your Shakespeare!

A Vocal Showcase

Wednesday, February 11, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Anne MacGregor Jenkins Recital Hall

In this year following the celebration of Shakespeare’s 450th birthday, Director of Voice Studies Diane Stahl will present colleagues and students in an evening of songs and arias with texts by the incomparable Shakespeare. Joining Professor Stahl in this special tribute will be music colleagues Paula Parsché at the piano, Mark Thomsen, tenor, and talented student soloists and ensembles. As a special treat, Shakespeare scholar and English Department colleague Dr. Cat Eskin will share some readings and tidbits about the great bard. Come join the fun and “Brush Up Your Shakespeare!”

Valerie Gillespie

The FSC Jazz Faculty Collective in Concert

Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - 7:30 p.m.
Branscomb Auditorium

This newest Florida Southern College faculty ensemble made its debut in last season’s A Faculty Showcase, and was an immediate hit. All formidable jazz musicians in their own right, together they create a musical synergy that appeals to the heart, the mind, and the soul. Join Valerie Gillespie, Paul Butcher, Ian Goodman, and Jay Mueller as they lead us through a memorable evening of innovative jazz programming.


Theatre Productions

Single tickets for theatre events are $18.00 for adults; $9 for students.

Stepping Out

Stepping Out

By Richard Harrs
Directed by Mary T. Albright
September 25–28; October 2–5, 2014 - 7:30 p.m. (Sundays at 2:30 p.m.)
Loca Lee Buckner Theatre

This rollicking comedy recounts the attempts of working class amateurs to overcome their inhibitions and “left feet” in a low-rent dance studio in North London. Mavis, a former professional chorus girl, tries her hardest to teach the bumbling amateurs some skills for an upcoming recital. But before the dancing begins, Mavis must mediate the minor dramas that erupt among this motley, but loveable, crew.

Anton In Show Business

Second Stage: Anton in Show Business

By Jane Martin
Directed by Paul Bawek
October 30–November 2, 2014 - 10:00 p.m. (Sunday at 7:30 p.m.)
Fletcher Theatre

This madcap comedy follows three actresses as they pursue their dream of performing Chekhov in Texas. As the Three Sisters are whisked through a maelstrom of “good ideas” that offer unique solutions to their pursuit of life’s deeper purpose, the tradition of great backstage comedies is preserved as the joys, pains, and absurdities of putting on a play at the turn of the century are encountered.



Book, music, and lyrics by Jonathan
Directed by James Beck
November 13–16, November 20–23, 2014 - 7:30 p.m. (Sundays at 2:30 p.m.)
Loca Lee Buckner Theatre

Based loosely on Puccini’s opera, La Bohème, Rent is about falling in love, finding your voice, and living for today. Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Rent has become a pop cultural phenomenon with songs that rock and a story that resonates with audiences of all ages.

A Chorus Line

A Chorus Line

Music by Marvin Hamlisch
Lyrics by Ed Kleban
Book by James Kirkwood Jr. and Nicholas Dante
Directed by Paul Bawek
February 12–15; February 19–22, 2015 - 7:30 p.m. (Sundays at 2:30 p.m.)
Loca Lee Buckner Theatre

The Tony award-winning A Chorus Line is a stunning musical-verité about a chorus audition for a Broadway musical. It tells of the achingly poignant ambitions of professional Broadway gypsies seeking to land a job in the show—and is a powerful metaphor for all human aspiration.

The Trip to Bountiful

The Trip to Bountiful

By Horton Foote
Directed by James Beck
April 2–5; April 9–12, 2015 - 7:30 p.m. (Sundays at 2:30 p.m.)
Loca Lee Buckner Theatre

The Trip to Bountiful tells the touching story of Carrie Watts, an elderly woman who wants to return home from Houston to the small town where she grew up. Frequently stopped from leaving by her daughter-in-law and overprotective son (who will not let her travel alone), she ultimately “escapes” and realizes her dearest dream of all—a trip back to Bountiful. Portraying Carrie in this special production is beloved Lakeland actress Ingrid MacDonald.

The Festival of Fine Arts has been bringing the arts to Polk County for more than 50 years.

From classical music to Broadway-style theatre, you'll enjoy a diverse array of exciting performances and exhibits.


Get Your Tickets Today!

Tickets may be purchased in person using cash or credit card, by telephone at 863.680.4296, or online.

Purchase Tickets Online Now

See Ticket & Seating Info  


Ticket & Seating Info

The Robert A. Davis Performing Arts Center at Florida Southern College consists of several auditoriums and recital spaces. Please check the event's listing and confirm the theater in which the show is being presented.

Purchase Tickets Online Now

Single admission ticket prices are as follows:

Music Events $8 adults and $4 students
Theatre Events $18 adults and $9 students
Special Events See event listing for details
Music Faculty Artist Series and Art Show events are free of charge.

Season Tickets

Season Tickets cost $100 and provide admission to all Festival of Fine Arts events (excludes the Special Event: Imperial Symphony Orchestra: Night at the Opera).

Season tickets can be purchased at the Box Office or by mail. Please send your check to the Festival of Fine Arts, 111 Lake Hollingsworth Drive, Lakeland, FL 33801.

Box Office Hours

Tickets for all Festival of Fine Arts events may be purchased in person using cash or credit card at the Branscomb Auditorium Box Office, located on Johnson Avenue (use Parking Lot VA), or by telephone at 863.680.4296. Box office hours are 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM, Monday through Friday.


Each venue will be opened for seating one hour prior to performance unless prevented by special circumstances, i.e. if in rare cases visiting performers should need extra time for sound checks or stage adjustments.

Please note: The use of cameras, recording devices, or cellular phones is strictly prohibited at all performances. Smoking is allowed in outside peripheral areas only. We also ask that no food or beverages be brought into lobbies or seating areas anywhere in the center.

Branscomb Auditorium

Buckner Theatre


Directions & Parking

Located at 1085 Johnson Ave, Lakeland, FL 33803-1309, just off Lake Hollingsworth, the Robert A. Davis Performing Arts Center is easy to get to.


Parking at Florida Southern is both convenient and plentiful. The most convenient parking area is the VA lot located at Park Street and Johnson Avenue. (See campus map)

Reserved handicap parking will be available only for the four special event performances and the Christmas Gala. Please call 863.680.4125 on the day of the performance to reserve a handicap parking space.

For Branscomb Auditorium rental information, please contact the auditorium director at ccorrigan@flsouthern.edu or call 863.680.4295.