Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra Philharmonic Fling! begins at 2:30 p.m. Gates open at 1 p.m.

Philharmonic Fling! brings music to the park

Music will fill the air at Ed Macgregor Park on Sunday when the Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra presents its biggest concert of the year

Music will fill the air at Ed Macgregor Park on Sunday (July 12) when the Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra presents its biggest concert of the year.

Philharmonic Fling! attracts up to 1,000 people to the free open-air pops concert.

The annual outdoor concert began in 2002 on the Sooke Flats as part of all Sooke Days. It moved to Ed Macgregor Park in 2004 when the bandshell was built.

“It is an event where families can come and enjoy the park and the music,” said orchestra spokesperson Jenny Nelson.

“Fling brings music to the people. It is a community outreach project of the orchestra.”

Longtime orchestra musician Michael Klazek is this year’s guest conductor. He’ll be joined by soloists Betty Allison (soprano), Sunny Shams (tenor), Merrie Klazek (trumpet) and Pierre Schryer (fiddle).

All of the soloists have some connection to Sooke. Allison and Shams started their musical careers in Sooke and regularly perform internationally. Klazek is with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra and married to Schryer who is a Juno-nominated musician with six albums to his credit.

The orchestra consists of about 60 musicians.

Conductor Michael Klazek said he wants to present a concert that will satisfy all musical tastes.

“I see this concert as music being accessible to people who aren’t regular symphony-goers. I have a wide taste in music, as most people do. I thought a variety show would really be the answer,” he said.

The first half of the show features light classical music such as Johann Strauss’ Emperor Waltz and opera great Luciano Pavarotti’s Nessun dorma.

The second half of the program is lighter fare, including a piece on a Justin Bieber song arranged by Sooke composer and orchestra member Brent Straughan.

“We have a variety show of soloists and orchestra music that goes very well together,” Klazek said.

Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra Philharmonic Fling! begins at 2:30 p.m. Gates open at 1 p.m.