America, The Beautiful


November 13, 2022. 3:00pm

Please join us, as the North Port Symphony, led by Maestro Robert Romanski, takes you on a musical tour of our great nation, featuring an inspiring and entertaining tribute to America. The home-grown selections will honor our country and the people dedicated to preserving our freedom! Featuring pianist Melissa Petrescue  performing Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue".

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Johanna Fincher

Guest Artist: Melissa Petrescue, Piano


Praised for her passionate expression, poise, and authentic stage presence; Melissa Petrescue is a multifaceted musical artist and director born in Vancouver, B.C., Canada -- currently residing in Florida’s greater St. Petersburg area, where she was raised. Classically trained, yet professionally active in a variety of genres, Melissa spans a gamut of musical styles given a strong background of training and variety of professional experience. Growing up in a musical family, Melissa began piano lessons at age 5, and classical voice training shortly after. A few of her instructors include Dr. Xu Hui, Rebecca Penneys, as well as jazz professor, Daniel Joiner. Competing, advancing, and receiving some of the highest recognition in local and state-wide competitions and festivals, Melissa established a strong technical foundation in voice and piano that has contributed to her wide range of abilities as a professional artist today.

From a young age, Melissa has received numerous awards and granted 1st place in several competitions, including a concerto competition which allowed her the privilege of performing the first movement of Mendelssohn’s piano concerto in G minor, Op. 25 as a featured soloist for concerts with The Florida Orchestra at both Ruth Eckerd Hall and Mahaffey Theatre.

From classical to theatre to jazz to world pop..., Melissa has submerged herself in a variety of musical contexts and styles as she expands her platform as a versatile performing artist. Landing her first audition at Busch Gardens Tampa led to a steady gig of performing onstage for thousands of guests in a variety of themed shows and atmosphere entertainment (such as, motown, doo-wop, gospel, pop – including the fun of playing keytar for the park’s award-winning show, Kinetix). Ever since, Melissa has been high-in-demand, working as a full-time performing artist (in both voice and piano/keyboard) for a broad spectrum of upscale events, shows, theatres, organizations, ensembles, bands, and solo projects throughout the Tampa Bay area and beyond!

As a strong leader and experienced music director, Melissa has served as music director for Straz’s Broadway Ball 2021, American Stage Theatre Company’s summer camps, and several recognizable church establishments throughout the region and abroad, including Tampa’s Grace Family Church.


Melissa is absolutely delighted to join Robert Romanski and the North Port Symphony today in sharing the wonder of music through Gerswin's Rhapsody in Blue!