Coming Up! Symphony’s ‘Apollo’ tribute will be a lunar lulu

I say “one giant leap.” You say “…” Easy answer, right? This Sunday, July 28, the wonderful Space Coast Symphony Orchestra will perform “One Giant Leap: A Tribute to Apollo” at Community Church in Vero. It’s hard to believe it’s been a half century since Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong bounced down the ladder onto the surface of the moon and uttered the now iconic words, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” In what is sure to be a stirring and moving concert, the orchestra will commemorate the 50th anniversary of one of the most magnificent and stunning events in history, which will, of course, include, says the concert promo, “several musical premieres, including the Southeast U.S. premiere of composer Michael Daugherty’s ‘To the New World,’ a three-movement work celebrating America’s lunar milestone.” In attendance will be composers Austin Wintory, known for his concert work, film scores and award-winning video game music; and Kevin Wilt, as new works by both will be performed. Never fear, Trekkies. Of course, several themes from the “Star Trek” TV and film series will thrill fans, as will the scores from James Horner’s “Apollo 13,” Justin Hurwitz’s Golden Globe-winning “First Man,” and works from the incomparable John Williams and Dmitri Shostakovich. All in all, a breathtaking program. Coincidentally, the orchestra’s dynamic young conductor Aaron Collins – who grew up in Cocoa Beach, surrounded by all sorts of space influences – took a pretty daring “giant leap” himself when he decided to launch the orchestra a decade ago in spite of the recession. “Innovation breeds innovation,” he has posited. Great decision, Aaron. Time: 3 p.m. Tickets: Adults, $25 in advance, $30 at the door; 18 and under or with student ID, free. 855-252-7276 or

Also airborne, but not quite as high: the beloved Vero Beach Recreation Department youth circus – a part of the fabric of the city since 1974 – will bring it again, next Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Aug. 1-3, this year commemorating the event’s 45th year as well as the city’s 100th birthday. The “Centennial Aerial Antics Youth Circus” will illuminate the stage in four performances at the St. Edward’s School Performing Arts Center. As is Aerial Antics tradition, the creative, vastly entertaining shows, according to the event promo, feature about 250 “participants in the Recreation Department’s gymnastics and performing arts programs and summer camps, ages 3 to 31,” who train in such circus arts-oriented disciplines as gymnastics, dance, adagio and aerial work. You’ll thoroughly enjoy the Little Stars, the Dance Arts students, the Junior Entertainers, the Spotlights, the Performing Arts Troupe and the Performing Arts Company. The special Saturday matinee will showcase the year-round Aerial Antics Youth Circus performers. Times: Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 7 p.m. Saturday matinee: 2 p.m. Tickets: 7 p.m. performances, adults, $8; 5-12, $7 (sold at Leisure Square and Riverside Racquet Complex); Saturday 2 p.m. fundraiser: $25 (call City Clerk’s office, 772-978-4700).

It’s time for another Downtown Friday street par-TAY in Vero’s Historic Downtown District, this Friday, July 26. As usual, live music is the hub around which all the other cool stuff happens, and this month the stage will vibrate to the skillful, soulful blend of rootsy jam/rock/blues as only Sleepin’ Dogz can bring it. The Dogz include singer/songwriter/rhythm guitarist/keyboardist Jeannie Burke; lead/rhythm guitar Leo Burke; bass/vocals Steven Pippin; and drums/vocals Jeff Newman. If you partake of the local nightlife, you’ve likely heard them, maybe even got out there on the floor to bust a few moves, which you can absolutely do at Downtown Friday, should the urge strike you. They totally know how to get the party started, and keep it chuggin’ along. Downtown Friday appeals to all ages, and you can always find plenty of food and bev choices, shops and galleries open and welcoming, street vendors – and even the family pooch is welcome as long as he or she is well-mannered and on a leash. As usual, Downtown Friday benefits local nonprofits: This month it’s Real Men Wear Pink and the Hibiscus Children’s Center. The fun, and the music, are yours to enjoy from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. It’s free. 772-643-6782.

Leave a Comment