South Florida PBS will be the first in the nation to broadcast on television the Palm Beach Symphony production of “Eudora’s Fable: The Shoe Bird,” an adaptation of Eudora Welty’s only Pulitzer Prize-winning children’s book, “The Shoe Bird “. The concert will air at 3 p.m. Sunday, September 11 on WPBT and 7 p.m. on WXEL in Palm Beach County.
The concert is conducted by Palm Beach Symphony Music Director Gerard Schwarz, who received a 2008 Grammy Award nomination for “Best Children’s Musical Album” for a recording of the work.
“Performed last October as part of the Dale A. McNulty Children’s Concert Series, this is the first broadcast of a Palm Beach Symphony family concert,” Schwarz said in a statement. “We are in the process of making it available for broadcast by PBS stations across the country as the first in a series of televised concerts we are creating to engage, entertain and educate the next generation in classical music.”
Written by Pulitzer Prize winner and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient Welty, the imaginary story of “The Shoe Bird” is a story of birds going in the wrong direction while wearing shoes, the problems that come with it, and how they are saved. The Orchestra and the Young Singers of the Palm Beaches take turns commentating on the action as the short story from Eudora for Children comes to life. The music introduces and expands the audience’s knowledge of the instruments of an orchestra by featuring the auxiliary instruments of the woodwind section while depicting the many birds of the story. Composer Samuel Jones adapted the story to create the music and lyrics for “Eudora’s Fable: The Shoe Bird”. Charlie Adler, named one of the “Best Voiceover Artists of All Time” by “Animation Magazine”, serves as narrator.
The concert features larger-than-life art projections on stage designed by Ed McGowin.
“As part of our mission to promote and promote the arts in our communities, we are thrilled to partner with Palm Beach Symphony and look forward to future opportunities to provide our viewers with high quality musical and cultural content” , said Dolores Sukhdeo, South President and CEO of Florida PBS.
More than 5,200 South Florida students heard the concert during virtual field trips over the past school year. In addition, concert-related workshops were led by artists teaching symphonic music in primary to secondary school classes. A partnership with the Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County provided all elementary and middle school students with “Eudora’s Fable: The Shoe Bird Literacy Kits”, containing a copy of the book and learning activities related to proverbs and idioms birds.
Palm Beach Symphony continues to expand its education and community outreach programs with children’s concerts, student coaching sessions and master classes, instrument donations and free public concerts that have reached more than 64 000 students in recent years. Information: www.palmbeachsymphony.org. ¦