The Grammy Award-winning Indigo Girls, one of folk rock’s most popular duos, will join with the Florence Symphony Orchestra for a very special concert at 7:30 p.m. on June 20 at the Francis Marion University Performing Arts Center in downtown Florence.
Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. show start at $69 and will go on sale Monday, April 28, at noon. Tickets are available in person at the PAC box office (201 S. Dargan Street), online at www.fmupac.org, or by phone at 843-661-4444.
The pairing of rockers and symphony is unconventional, but it’s been a recent staple for the Indigo Girls. During the past few years Indigo Girls Amy Ray and Emily Saliers have performed with symphonies in Atlanta, Dallas, Kansas City, Nashville, Cincinnati and Phoenix.
For the Florence Symphony Orchestra, however, the event represents a major milestone, says FSO Music Director Terry Roberts.
“Performing with Indigo Girls is a great way for the Florence Symphony Orchestra to reach new audiences – and a terrific opportunity to show off the depth and versatility of our musicians,” says Roberts. “I’m looking forward to expanding FSO’s programs to include many different musical genres, and hopefully this will be the first of many collaborations with Francis Marion University.”
The 65-year-old Florence Symphony is one of the cultural cornerstones of the Florence community. It’s also one of the resident arts group at the PAC.
The Indigo Girls are an American musical icon, a multiplatinum duo whose storytelling and musicianship has mesmerized a generation of fans. Ray and Saliers have sold more than 12 million records and played to millions more around the globe, developing one of the most loyal and enthusiastic communities of fans who relish the experience that is an Indigo Girls concert.
Ray and Saliers met in elementary school in Georgia and began performing together in their teens. The duo plied their craft in countless small clubs, honky tonks and fairs before they hit with the 1989 release of their self-titled breakthrough album, and their first hit, “Closer To Fine.”
Three decades later their most recent album, Beauty Queen Sister, is a tour de force that alternates richly textured storytelling with moody ruminations on modern-world worries. Beauty Queen Sister reveals a fierce longing for a more idyllic existence while celebrating the extraordinary in everyday life. The graceful mix of openhearted poetry and lush, intricate arrangements — an excellent starting point for a symphonic concert – allows the listener to slip into the sort of dreamy serenity that Ray and Saliers have been known for throughout their careers.
“We really work hard to not lean on any tried-and-true path in making our albums,” says Ray. “So when it comes to writing new songs and working with different musicians, every record feels like a completely different adventure for us.”
The Indigo Girls’ recent symphonic work has proved a nice fit at this stage of the duo’s career and should be again, June 20 in Florence.
An Atlanta Journal Constitution review of a recent appearance with the Atlanta Symphony noted that the Indigo Girls benefitted far more than most from a classical symphonic backline.
“This setting (i.e., the Symphony) provided a freshness that only added, never subtracted, from their songs,” wrote the AJC.
Sounds like good news for Florence fans as well.