Midcoast Symphony Orchestra’s conductor Rohan Smith. SYSTEM

Due to the ongoing pandemic, the Midcoast Symphony Orchestra will not be performing concerts through May in Topsham and Lewiston. Instead MSO will offer a variety of free online events.  The orchestra will continue its series of Facebook Live chats with conductor and music director Rohan Smith and some of MSO’s favorite guest artists.

“Gabbing with George about George” will be presented at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 6. Smith and pianist George Lopez will talk about George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” that Lopez performed with MSO in 2009. They will explore the roots of the piece as well as how various artists, including Lopez, have interpreted it.

Rohan Smith is in his 17th season with MSO and has led the orchestra to critical acclaim in performances of the major symphonic repertoire. Smith is also Director of Orchestral and Chamber Music at Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire and a professional violinist, having performed orchestral and chamber music in Europe, Australia and the New York City area.

George Lopez has been a featured pianist across the globe as recitalist and soloist with orchestras. He has been guest soloist with MSO numerous times and is an audience favorite. He is the Beckwith Artist in Residence at Bowdoin College and conducts the Bowdoin Chamber Orchestra, in addition to being a piano instructor there.

Smith will host his next online chat with New York City trumpeter, conductor, and composer Wayne du Maine at 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 13. Du Maine was to have conducted the orchestra in March, in addition to being soloist.

These events are free and open to the public on MSO’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/midcoastsymphony) and can be viewed there any time after the live event, as well as on MSO’s YouTube channel. To stay current on all MSO events, sign up for its online newsletter by emailing [email protected]

The Midcoast Symphony Orchestra is a community orchestra founded in 1990. Started as a chamber orchestra, there are now more than 80 members. Under the baton of Rohan Smith, the orchestra brings top-notch performances to the Orion Center in Topsham and the Gendron Franco Center in Lewiston. Members are volunteer musicians across Maine.