MARATHON, Florida Keys — What began as a simple quest to bring music to the Marathon community has grown into a tradition of musical excellence and philanthropy for the volunteer not-for-profit Middle Keys Concert Association. The association’s 2011 season kicks off in January.

MKCA brings six performances to Marathon, each representing different musical genres and cultures.

Three performances are to take place at the Marathon High School auditorium, located at 350 Sombrero Beach Road, including the 2011 season’s kickoff set for Jan. 21. The Harry James Orchestra, under the guidance of Harry James’ lead trumpet virtuoso, continues its tradition of fine rhythmic playing and mellow stylings.

The other performances at the high school auditorium are “The Dueling Divas” opera, set for Feb. 28, and a March 14 tribute to the Beatles called “BritBeat.”

Three concerts scheduled at San Pablo Catholic Church, located at 550 122nd St., include a Jan. 31 piano presentation by Soo-Yeon Ham, a string chamber orchestra performance Feb. 14 and a Feb. 21 performance by 14-year-old piano and cello prodigy Sarina Zhang.

Tickets for each concert go on sale at 6 p.m., doors open at 7 p.m. and performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Season tickets are $75 per person. Individual performances are $25 per person at the door, except the Harry James Orchestra concert priced at $40 per person.

Utilizing proceeds from ticket sales and donations, the MKCA awards a $1,000 annual scholarship to a local college-bound high school student seeking a degree in the arts.

Concert information: or 305-743-4687
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