Jay Cridlin, Tampa Bay Times, 12th December 2019

“Michael Francis raised his right hand.

Normally when he does this, he’s holding a baton, poised to swoop into a downstroke on a masterwork by Beethoven or Bach.

On Thursday, though, he held a microphone. In his other hand was a program marked with stars and stripes. Before him stood his wife, his daughter, and dozens of immigrants from 26 nations, Iran and Venezuela and Syria and Kosovo, all raising their right hands, too.

The music director of the Florida Orchestra is good in front of a crowd. But this was new. This was something he’d never done before.”