Epic Fifth Symphony Opens Andrés Orozco-Estrada's 3 WEEKS OF BEETHOVEN This Weekend
Andrés lends his unique blend of passion and electricity to 11 thrilling performances over three weeks, which begin a larger three-year cycle of all nine Beethoven symphonies between the 2014-15 and 2016-17 seasons. In this opening weekend of the Beethoven series, concertgoers not only hear the legendary four-note theme of Beethoven's ever-popular Fifth Symphony, but are led through a unique and captivating first-half of music embodying the intoxicating sounds, rhythms and melodies of Hispanic culture. This juxtaposition, which pairs an iconic masterwork with engaging music of our time, represents Andrés' vision of combining the new and old while highlighting his South American heritage.
The concert begins with Composer-in-Residence Gabriela Lena Frank's Three Latin American Dances, a piece which draws influence from many sources, including the shared Latin American heritage of both Frank and Orozco-Estrada. From the Symphonic Dances of West Side Story to the "mestizo" or mixed-race music of the South American Pacific coast, Three Latin American Dances will both enchant and enthrall listeners. Frank, acting as Composer-in-Residence over a three season period, is a compelling and engaging compositional voice in the North American music scene. She will be featured in multiple ways during her residency, including the commissioning of new world-premiere works for the Houston Symphony. Frank is also keen to get active beyond the concert hall during her times in residence in Houston, creating meaningful connections between her music and community organizations and schools. Also on the concert program's first half, audiences will hear Lalo's Symphonie espagnole, featuring brilliant Spanish violin melodies performed by Concertmaster Frank Huang and the Houston Symphony.
HOUSTON SYMPHONY CLASSICAL CONCERT
Thursday, November 13, 2014, 8:00pm (Sugar Land concert at Sugar Land Baptist Church)
Friday, November 14, 2014, 8:00pm
Saturday, November 15, 2014, 8:00pm
Sunday, November 16, 2014, 2:30pm
Sunday, November 16, 2014, 7:30pm (Spanish-dialogue program at Rice University's Student Concert Hall)
Andrés Orozco-Estrada, conductor
Frank Huang, violin
Gabriela Lena Frank: Three Latin American Dances
Lalo: Symphonie espagnole
Beethoven: Symphony No. 5.
Tickets from $25. Performances at Jones Hall 615 Louisiana St. Houston, TX 77002 .
About Gabriela Lena Frank Identity has always been at the center of Gabriela Lena Frank's music. Born in Berkeley, California, to a mother of Peruvian/Chinese ancestry and a father of Lithuanian/Jewish descent, Frank explores her multicultural heritage most ardently through her compositions. Inspired by the works of Bela Bartók and Alberto Ginastera, Frank is something of a musical anthropologist. She has traveled extensively throughout South America and her pieces reflect her studies of Latin American folklore, incorporating poetry, mythology and native musical styles into a western classical framework that is uniquely her own. She writes challenging idiomatic parts for solo instrumentalists, vocalists, chamber ensembles and orchestras, and she frequently has a story line, scenario or character in mind behind her music. Frank's compositions also reflect her virtuosity as a pianist - when not composing, she is a sought-after performer, specializing in contemporary repertoire. This season, Frank serves a composer-in-residence to both the Houston Symphony for whom she wrote Karnavalingo to welcome incoming music director Andrés Orozco-Estrada and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. A 2009 recipient of the prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship to assist in research and artistic creation, Frank's recent premieres include Will-o'-the-Wisp for piccolo player Mary Kay Fink and the Cleveland Orchestra; Saints for The Berkeley Symphony, soprano Jessica Rivera and the San Francisco Girls Chorus; and Concertino Cusqueño for the Philadelphia Orchestra. Frank attended Rice University in Houston, Texas, where she earned both a B.A. (1994) and M.A. (1996). She studied composition with Paul Cooper, Ellsworth Milburn, and Sam Jones, and piano with Jeanne Kierman Fischer. Frank credits Fischer with introducing her to the music of Ginastera, Bartók and other composers who utilized folk elements in their work. At the University of Michigan, where she received a D.M.A. in composition in 2001, Frank studied with William Albright, William Bolcom, Leslie Bassett, and Michael Daugherty, and piano with Logan Skelton.
About Frank Huang First Prize Winner of the 2003 Walter W. Naumburg Foundation's Violin Competition and the 2000 Hannover International Violin Competition, Frank Huang has established a major career as a violin virtuoso. At the age of eleven, he performed with the Houston Symphony Orchestra in a nationally broadcast concert and has since performed with orchestras throughout the world, including the Cleveland Orchestra, LA Philharmonic, Saint-Paul Chamber Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony, NDR Radio Philharmonic Orchestra of Hannover, Amadeus Chamber Orchestra and the Genoa Orchestra. He has performed on NPR's Performance Today, Good Morning America and CNN's American Morning with Paula Zahn. Mr. Huang's first commercial recording, comprised of Fantasies by Schubert, Ernst, Schoenberg and Waxman, was released on Naxos in the fall of 2003. He has had great success in competitions since the age of fifteen with top prize awards in the Premio Paganini International Violin Competition and the Indianapolis International Violin Competition. He also received Gold Medal Awards in the Kingsville International Competition, the Irving M. Klein International Competition and the D'Angelo International Competition. Recent concerts include debuts in Wigmore Hall, (London) Salle Cortot, (Paris) Kennedy Center, (Washington) Herbst Theatre, (San Francisco) and also his second recital in Alice Tully Hall (New York), which featured the world premiere of Donald Martino's Sonata for Solo Violin. In addition to his solo career, Mr. Huang is deeply committed to chamber music. He has attended the Marlboro Music Festival, Ravinia's Steans Institute, The Seattle Chamber Music festival, and the Caramoor Festival, and frequently participates in Musicians from Marlboro tours. He was also selected by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center to be a member of the prestigious Chamber Music II program. Before joining the Houston Symphony, Mr. Huang held the position of first violinist of the Grammy Award-winning Ying Quartet and was a faculty member at the Eastman School of Music. Mr. Huang began his tenure as concertmaster of the Houston Symphony in 2010, and is also on the faculty at Rice University and the University of Houston. He teaches during the summers at the Bowdoin International Music Festival, the Texas Music Festival, and the Great Mountains Music Festival in South Korea. Mr. Huang performs in a trio with pianist Gilles Vonsattel and cellist Nicolas Altstaedt, and also serves as the concertmaster and leader of the Sejong Soloists, a conductorless chamber orchestra based in New York.
About Andrés Orozco-Estrada Andrés Orozco-Estrada, born in Colombia and trained in Vienna, is one of the most sought after conductors of his generation. He begins his tenure as the Houston Symphony's 15th Music Director in September 2014. In addition to his appointment in Houston, Andrés will take up the position of chief conductor of the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra during the 2014-15 season and will become principal guest conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra beginning in the 2015-16 season. Since the 2009-10 season, he has held the post of music director of the Tonkünstler Orchestra Niederösterreich, one of the most important institutions of traditional Austrian music culture, which holds subscription series at the Vienna Musikverein and is orchestra-in-residence at the Grafenegg Festival. He will conclude his tenure with the Tonkünstler Orchestra in summer 2015. From 2009 through 2013, Andrés was also principal conductor at the Basque National Orchestra in San Sebastián, Spain. As a guest conductor, he regularly works with the world's most prominent orchestras, including the Vienna, Munich, London, Rotterdam, Royal Stockholm and La Scala Philharmonic Orchestras; Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra; Mahler Chamber Orchestra; London, City of Birmingham and Gothenburg Symphony Orchestras; the Santa Cecilia Orchestra in Rome; Radio Symphony Orchestra of Hamburg; the Orchestre National de France; Verbier Festival Orchestra; and the St. Louis and Oregon Symphonies. Following his debut with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in 2010, Andrés was hailed "a brilliant stand-in" for Esa-Pekka Salonen and celebrated as an "eminent talent" by Austria's Wiener Zeitung and Die Presse. In November 2012, Andrés stepped in once again with just one rehearsal's notice to conduct the Vienna Philharmonic in the Musikverein for Riccardo Muti and was praised as a "stand-in worth his weight in gold" and "an inspired master of communication" by the Viennese daily newspapers Kurier and Der Standard. In the 2015-16 season, he will make his official debut with the Vienna Philharmonic orchestra on its subscription season. Born in 1977 in Medellín (Colombia), Andrés began his musical studies on the violin and had his first conducting lessons at age 15. In 1997, he moved to Vienna where he joined the conducting class of Uroš Lajovic, a pupil of the legendary Hans Swarowsky, at the renowned Vienna Music Academy and completed his degree with distinction by conducting the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra at the Vienna Musikverein. The emphasis of his artistic work lies in the Romantic repertoire and Viennese classics. At the same time, Andrés shows a keen interest in contemporary music and regularly performs premieres of Austrian composers as well as compositions of Spanish and South American origin. He currently lives in Vienna.
About Houston Symphony During the 2014-15 season, the Houston Symphony enters its second century as one of America's leading orchestras with a full complement of concert, community, education, touring and recording activities. This season also marks the inaugural year for new Music Director Andrés Orozco- Estrada. The Houston Symphony is one of the oldest performing arts organizations in Texas whose inaugural performance was held at The Majestic Theater in downtown Houston on June 21, 1913. Today, with an annual operating budget of $29 million, the full-time ensemble of 87 professional musicians is the largest performing arts organization in Houston, presenting more than 286 performances for 300,000 people, including 82,000 children, annually. For tickets and more information, visit www.houstonsymphony.org or call (713) 224-7575.