Freeman Stage To Open Season

SELBYVILLE, Del. – The Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Maestro Julien Benichou, will kick-off the seventh summer season of The Freeman Stage at Bayside at 7 p.m. on Friday, June 20. Admission is $10 per person, with kids 18 & under being free.

The MSO is enjoying its 17th season and its ninth year under the musical direction of Julien Benichou. The 50-plus member orchestra continues to grow in numbers and in the quality of its performances and repertoire.

“The arts are such an important part of the cultural life of our communities,” said Benichou. “I see the MSO flourishing in the near future, giving us the opportunity to bring the Mid-Atlantic region beautiful musical experiences.”

Along with the orchestra, the June 20 performance at The Freeman Stage will feature the Irish Valley Brothers Trio, and nearly 100 students from John M. Clayton Elementary that will be singing three songs on stage with the orchestra.

“We are grateful for our partnership with the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra,” said Patti Grimes, Executive Director of the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation. “This is the seventh season at The Freeman Stage at Bayside and each year the MSO has helped us launch our summer schedule. With the inclusion of the students of John M. Clayton Elementary School, thanks in part to a NEA Challenge America grant that we received, we feel as though this is a the perfect collaboration between professional musicians, aspiring musicians, and the community that supports them both.”

Among the performances scheduled for later this season are such crowd favorites as Clear Space Theatre Group, Jesse Garron’s tribute to Elvis, and the First State Ballet Theatre. Also returning in 2014 are the Arts & Jazz Festival, Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, local artist John Donato, Tommy Edward as Sir Rod, tribute band, Hotel California: “A Salute to the Eagles” and Bruce in the USA, whose performance will include special guests in the audience from Operation SEAs the Day – a beach week event held in September for veterans who are recovering from injuries sustained while serving our country. Two nights of “Locals Under the Lights”, where local artists will have their moment in the spotlight, will also be back in 2014.

The Freeman Stage is a program of the Joshua M. Freeman Foundation, who partners to present memorable performances and provide inspired arts education for all. This program is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency dedicated to nurturing and supporting the arts in Delaware, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. Grant support is also provided by the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, the Carl M. Freeman Foundation, the Sussex County Council, and the State of Delaware. For more information on this season’s events or to purchase tickets, call 302-436-3015 or visit