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March 11 & 13 concerts feature masterful pianist in celebrated piano concerto


DAYTON OH (February 26, 2010) - The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2009-2010 Miami Valley & Good Samaritan Hospitals Classical Series continues with American Icon: Barber Piano Concerto, featuring soloist Leon Bates, on Thursday and Saturday, March 11 & 13, 2010, both performances at 8 p.m. at the Schuster Center.   

At the heart of these programs is the Piano Concerto by American composer Samuel Barber, winner of the 1963 Pulitzer Prize for music. Also on the program: the ethereal beauty of the tone poem Death and Transfiguration by Richard Strauss and the confident, youthful energy of Robert Schumann’s Symphony No. 3.  Neal Gittleman, Music Director of the DPO, will conduct.   

Pianist Leon Bates begins a two-week DPO residency with these performances.  He will return to the Schuster Center stage for pops concerts on March 19-20 featuring Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue.  

Tickets for the concerts of March 11 & 13 range from $12 - $59 and are available by calling (888) 228-3630 or by ordering on the web at

The Dayton Philharmonic’s 2009-2010 Classical Series is sponsored by Miami Valley & Good Samaritan Hospitals.  The concert on Thursday, March 11 will recognize the DPO’s Education Program Underwriters for the 2009-2010 season.  
For photographs of any of the DPO’s various series’ guest artists, go to:  


About Leon Bates
Leon Bates has performed in major concert halls in the United States and abroad on five continents.

His sheer mastery of the instrument has led to many performance invitations with major symphonies in the United States such as the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the American Symphony, the Detroit Symphony and the Atlanta Symphony. His large repertoire includes over 30 concerti by major composers and several contemporary concerti. A project of Duke Ellington's music is delighting audiences everywhere.  

A versatile and exciting artist, Bates enjoys collaborating with string quartets, wind quintets, singers and dance companies. In 2007, he received a life time achievement award from the NANM (National Association of Negro Musicians) for his brilliant musicianship and untiring work with young people.

Since winning the Philadelphia Orchestra Senior Auditions as a student, Leon Bates has emerged as one of America's leading pianists. He is invited to the prestigious venues and his performances have warranted critical and audience accolades in such halls as the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Philadelphia's Academy of Music and Kimmel Center, and in San Francisco and the Bay area where he has been presented numerous times by Four Seasons Concerts.

Leon Bates' work with young people is extraordinary. He is a master teacher and often is called upon to give master classes to promising young musicians. In one season alone he often performs over fifty residency programs in conjunction with orchestra engagements and recitals to inspire, motivate and delight America's youth as he opens their hearts and minds to the love of music. Bates is also a favorite on college campuses because of his broad interests beyond the world of classical music.

Bates has performed all over the world, appearing with the Vienna Symphony, The Sinfonica dell’di Santa Cecilia in Rome, the Strasbourg Symphony in France, Czech National Symphony, Prague, and the Quebec Symphony. He also toured South Africa after apartheid and performed in Johannesburg with the National Symphony Orchestra and with the Natal Philharmonic. Bates recently returned to Europe for performances in Germany and Italy.                             

Some highlights of his career include a performance with Lorin Maazel and the Orchestra of France; participating in the Steinway Foundation's Gala Celebration commemorating the building of their 500,000th piano at Carnegie Hall; a performance at La Scala in Milan in a televised program, for which he received numerous ovations from a jubilant audience.  In October of 2001 Governor Tom Ridge presented the Pennsylvania Artist of the Year Award to Mr. Bates.  

Performing, composing, recording and touring the world, pianist Leon Bates looks with great pleasure to the coming season, in which he now offers two lectures. The first is “Brown vs. the Board of Education” based on  the May 17, 1954 Supreme Court ruling, and the second is “American Originals,” recognizing the achievements of America’s extraordinary composers of our time.” Performance demonstrations accompany both lectures.                 


About the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra
The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra is the largest and oldest performing arts organization in the community. Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra performances are made possible in part by Montgomery County and Culture Works, the single largest source of community funds for the arts and culture in the Miami Valley. The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra receives partial funding from the Ohio Arts Council, a state agency created to foster and encourage the development of the arts and to preserve Ohio's cultural heritage. Funding from the Ohio Arts Council is an investment of state tax dollars that promotes economic growth, educational excellence, and cultural enrichment for all Ohio residents.

Performance Place at the Schuster Center ~ 109 North Main Street, Suite 200 ~ Dayton, Ohio 45402

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