Coming Up...

Mattie Kelly Arts Center

Click event for details: Date(s)

College Production:
Talley's Folly

Broadway Series:
Original Stars of American Bandstand

School Show:
Four Score and Seven Years Ago

Special Event:
NWFSC Film Club: Loving Vincent

Art Gallery:
America: The Dream of an Artist's Life featuring Emil Holzhauer

School Show:
Charlotte's Web

Artist Series:

School Show:
Nugget & Fang

View Full Events Lists:
All Upcoming Events | Gallery | Broadway & Artist Series | NFSO | College Productions | School Shows | Guests | Special Events


NFSO Opens 30th Season Sat. Sept. 17 - Good As Gold

Mattie Kelly Arts Center


9/2/2016 - NFSO Opens 30th Season Sept. 17, Fall Events Include 30th Gala, Guest Recital & New Symphony Sunday Matinee

The 30th anniversary season for the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra opens Saturday, September 17, 2016 at 7:30 pm with a glorious "GOOD AS GOLD" concert in the Mainstage Theater of the Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center in Niceville, Florida. The concert features Mendelssohn’s “Reformation” Symphony No. 5 and Brahms' Piano Concerto No. 2 with special Guest Artist Aristo Sham, of Hong Kong.

Aristo Sham is a 20-year-old classical pianist who is a rising star world-wide and was the 2015 Gold Medalist (Grand prize) of the 65th Wideman International Piano Competition. A child music prodigy, he joined the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts at the age of six, was featured in the documentary ‘The World’s Greatest Musical Prodigies’ broadcast in the United Kingdom, and is a Fellow of the Royal Schools of Music. He has given recitals on four continents in countries ranging from Singapore and the USA to Slovenia and Morocco and has played for Prince Andrew at Windsor Castle, and the Queen of Belgium and President Hu of China on their respective visits to Hong Kong. Aristo Sham is currently pursuing BA and MMus degrees in a joint program at Harvard University and the New England Conservatory.

At the NFSO concert, Sham will perform the Brahms concerto on the Mattie Kelly Arts Center’s magnificent Steinway grand piano – which recently underwent a 9 month, $54,000 full restoration. Tickets are $25 adult and $18 for Active Duty Military and up to 4 guests, and $18 for youth age 18 or younger. NWF State College students may request one free ticket per student ID in person from the Box Office. Call (850) 729-6000 or purchase online at Season tickets are also available.

This fall, the NFSO’s 30th Season also includes a Guest Artist Piano Recital on Saturday, October 15 by Yejin Lee of Korea, in the Tyler Recital Hall at the Mattie Kelly Arts Center. Tickets are $20 each. Lee has competed and claimed top awards in numerous prestigious national and international competitions and she is currently a pursing a doctorate in piano at the Peabody Institute.

The orchestra’s milestone anniversary will be celebrated in style Saturday, October 22 with Las Vegas star Brian Duprey performing “Sinatra: The Ultimate Tribute” in a special event concert backed by the NFSO. A 30th anniversary reception proceeds the Sinatra concert in the center’s Art Galleries. Tickets are $35 for the concert and $30 for the reception, both of which are fundraisers for the NFSO.

The NFSO’s first ever “Symphony Sunday” afternoon concert is November 13 at 2:00 pm. The “Music, Movement & the Royal Instrument” matinee concert premieres a new original composition by music professor and composer Dr. Jeremy Ribando, commissioned to celebrate the NFSO’s 30th anniversary. The new ballet will feature dancers from the college’s renowned dance program accompanied by the orchestra. The concert also includes Saint Saëns Organ Symphony played by music professor Lois Henry. On Friday, December 9 the NFSO presents the popular annual “Holiday Pops” concert along with the Northwest Florida Symphony Chorale, the NWF State College Madrigal Singers and Belle Voci Women's Ensemble. Tickets for each of these concerts are $25 and $18 with NWF State College students eligible for one free ticket on a space available basis.

The NFSO is a non-profit, fully professional orchestra that performs in residence at the Mattie Kelly Arts Center. The NFSO had to honor to be the first to perform in the center’s Mainstage Theater when it opened in January of 1997, and will co-host a gala joint 30th and 20th Anniversary Special Event – “An Evening with Jason Alexander” on January 21, 2017 with the Tony Award-winning star of Broadway, film and TV (Seinfeld). Tickets are $65 each and include a tasty anniversary tribute during intermission.

The NFSO has been operated under the auspices of Northwest Florida State College since the orchestra’s inception in 1987. Conductor and Music Director Jeffrey Rink holds the college’s Mattie M. Kelly Distinguished Endowed Teaching Chair in Music and Conducting and is entering his 10th season leading the NFSO. The NFSO relies on tax-deductible donations and corporate underwriting to support the orchestra and its numerous, long-standing educational endeavors for area youth. For full detail on the season’s 10 concerts, recitals and special events, see the NFSO website at