This preview has been provided by the North Carolina Symphony.

The North Carolina Symphony continues an annual tradition this Dec. 31 with a year-end concert that will usher in the New Year with style. In addition to timeless melodies from Vienna that are so identified with New Year’s Eve,  the concert will feature an unforgettable evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein, Cole Porter, and more with Associate Conductor David Glover, the North Carolina Symphony, and pianist and vocalist Tony DeSare and his trio.  The concert takes place at Meymandi Concert Hall, in downtown Raleigh’s Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, on Wednesday, Dec. 31 at 8:00 p.m.

For well over a century, the dance music of the Strauss family has serenaded classical music lovers into the New Year, and the North Carolina Symphony will begin its New Year’s Eve program with music from Johann Strauss Jr. and Johann Strauss, Sr. including the Overture to The Gypsy Baron, Thunder and Lightning Polka, and the Radetzky March.

Selections with Tony DeSare and the North Carolina Symphony include some of the greatest songs of the popular era and today, including Cole Porter’s “Night and Day,” Irving Berlin’s “I Love a Piano,” Johnny Mercer’s “Something’s Gotta Give,” Elton John and Bernie Taupin’s “Take Me to the Pilot,” and DeSare’s own “New Orleans Tango” and “How Will I Say I Love You.”

Named a “Rising Star” Male Vocalist in Downbeat magazine’s 2009 Critics Poll, DeSare has lived up to the distinction by winning critical and popular acclaim for his concert performances throughout the United States, as well as in Australia, Japan and Hong Kong. From clubs to Carnegie Hall to Las Vegas headlining with Don Rickles, he has brought a fresh take on old school class around the globe. DeSare has three top ten Billboard jazz albums under his belt and has been featured on the CBS Early Show, NPR, and the Today Show.

The critics agree. “He is two parts Sinatra to one part Billy Joel, meshed seamlessly…. A Sinatra acolyte in his early 30s who sings Prince as well as Johnny Mercer,” raved the New York Times. The Wall Street Journal adds its own comparisons, stating, “He is one third Bobby Darin, one third Bobby Short and one third Bobby Kennedy.” Rounding out the accolades is USA Today, which proclaimed, “DeSare belongs to a group of neo-traditional upstarts stretching from Harry Connick, Jr., to Michael Bublé and Jamie Cullum. DeSare covers old and newer pop and jazz standards without smothering or over-thinking the material.”

Tickets to the North Carolina Symphony’s New Year’s Eve concert with Tony DeSare range from $52 to $82.

To purchase tickets, visit the North Carolina Symphony website at www.ncsymphony.org or call the Symphony Box Office at 919.733.2750 or toll free 877.627.6724.  Concert tickets at all performances are also available at the door one hour prior to concert start time. Meymandi Concert Hall is located in the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., in Raleigh. 

This concert is made possible by The Charles E. Couns New Year’s Eve Concert Fund.

About the North Carolina Symphon

Founded in 1932, the North Carolina Symphony performs over 175 concerts annually to adults and school children in more than 50 North Carolina counties. An entity of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, the orchestra employs 66 professional musicians, under the artistic leadership of Music Director and Conductor Grant Llewellyn, Resident Conductor William Henry Curry, and Associate Conductor David Glover.

Based in downtown Raleigh’s spectacular Meymandi Concert Hall at the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts and an outdoor summer venue at Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, N.C., the Symphony performs about 60 concerts annually in the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Cary metropolitan area. It holds regular concert series in Fayetteville, New Bern, Southern Pines and Wilmington — as well as individual concerts in many other North Carolina communities throughout the year — and conducts one of the most extensive education programs of any U.S. orchestra.