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North Carolina Symphony Celebrates Pepsi Americas' Sail 2006 With Seaside Concert

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BEAUFORT, N.C. — With a spectacular backdrop of tall ship silhouettes against a Crystal Coast sunset, the North Carolina Symphony will perform a free evening concert at Olde Beaufort Seaport on the first day of Pepsi Americas’ Sail 2006. The festival, slated for June 30 – July 5 in Beaufort and Morehead City, N.C., features some of the world’s most magnificent sailing vessels.

The symphony plans to perform a patriotic program, including a world premiere performance of Last Voyage of the Currituck by composer Terry Mizesko. Last summer, Mizesko’s Sketches from Pinehurst earned international recognition and critical praise after its premiere at the 2005 U.S. Open golf tournament in Pinehurst, N.C. The piece was commissioned in honor of that prestigious event and performed under the direction of Grant Llewellyn, music director of the North Carolina Symphony.

"The symphony is thrilled to premiere another work by Terry Mizesko, a gifted composer and musician who grew up along North Carolina’s coast," Llewellyn said. "We also are excited to be part of the Pepsi Americas' Sail 2006 celebration, which is a terrific opportunity for us to showcase some of the exceptional musicians who call North Carolina home."

The Americas’ Sail festival is held every four years, and Beaufort was selected to host the 2006 event when Captain Horatio Sinbad, a pirate and sailing legend, won a race to Montego Bay, Jamaica, during the 2002 event. His victory earned him the right to bring the tall ships gala to his home port of Beaufort.

Last Voyage of the Currituck depicts the final adventure of a fictional ship as it sets sail from Boston for a roundtrip journey to the West Indies sometime in the mid-nineteenth century. Currituck, which means “land of the wild goose” in the language of the Algonquin Indians, also is the name of a North Carolina county, sound and lighthouse.

The cinematic work has six distinct sections, including a lively brass fanfare, a sweeping overture, a rousing Irish drinking song, a melancholy theme, a tumultuous dance and a grandiose—if bittersweet—finale. The piece encompasses an entire story, following the Currituck crew from their brave and confident launch until their foggy fade into legend and myth, lost at sea but immortal in sailor’s lore.

Mizesko, a native of Morehead City, has long been inspired by the open water: “The air is definitely different on the ocean,” he says. “You can smell the saltwater in New Bern. And it has always been the case that walking along Bogue Sound—filling my lungs with that scent—frees me, frees my mind.”

In addition to his work as a composer, Mizesko is an accomplished performer and serves as bass trombonist for the symphony.

For ticket information regarding the symphony’s 8:30 p.m. performance on June 30 and all 2006 Pepsi Americas’ Sail events, please visit www.pepsiamericassail.com or call (800) 514-3849. Tickets are required for the symphony’s free concert to prevent overcrowding at the venue.

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