Houston Symphony Plays Arabian-Inspired Family Concert, 1/19

Houston Symphony Plays Arabian-Inspired Family Concert, 1/19

Led by Associate Conductor Robert Franz, the Houston Symphony invites families to a mystical musical experience on Saturday, January 19.

Featuring pieces from Scheherazade and "Aladdin," the concert will musically transport audiences to far away places and adventures unknown. In addition to the Clear Creek High School Symphonic Chorale singing music from "Aladdin," the program will also feature many examples of different instrument families and musical styles in melodic selections that audience members of all ages will recognize and love.

"Family concerts are the perfect way to spend a Saturday morning enjoying some of the greatest music ever written," said Franz. "For me, the idea of getting into my costume and introducing families, and especially kids, to the music that I love is a thrill. The Houston Symphony is best experienced live, and what better way to open up your child's world than with the sounds and sights of these incredible musicians."

Family Concerts are a fun-filled, interactive and educational concert series created for children and their families. Their concert experience will be enhanced through video projection screens that provide additional story support and enable them to see the orchestra in action. Come early before the 10am concert or stay late after the 11:30am concert to participate in exciting activities including an instrument petting zoo, arts and crafts and youth ensemble performances.

For more ticket information, the Houston Symphony Patron Service Center in Jones Hall is open Monday-Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., by phone at (713) 224-7575 or online at www.houstonsymphony.org.

Houston Symphony Family Concerts play Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana St. in Houston, Texas, on Saturday, January 19, 2013, 10:00 AM and 11:30 AM. Tickets: Child $16; Adults $24

Aladdin and the Arabian Nights
Robert Franz, conductor
Clear Creek High School Symphonic Chorale
James Park, director

About Robert Franz: Since beginning as Associate Conductor of the Houston Symphony, Robert Franz has led the orchestra with vibrant, athletic and entertaining direction in a broad range of creative educational family concerts.

With a wide and varying knowledge of symphonic and operatic works, Franz has worked with some of today's finest performers including James Galway, Joshua Bell and Rachel Barton, Chris Botti, Chaka Khan and Judy Collins. He has been invited to guest conduct orchestras throughout the United States. In addition to guest conducting the Virginia Symphony, San Antonio Symphony and Musiqa (Houston) this season, he will return to the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival in Alaska and the South Bend Symphony Orchestra.

A champion of new music, Franz has conducted numerous world premieres and works by living composers, the ASCAP award winning new music concert series (Louisville Orchestra) and co-hosted In a Different Key, a weekly contemporary music radio program.

A nationally recognized leader of arts education, Franz has forged partnerships with leading arts organizations and educational institutions, and a continuing relationship with Radio Disney. He has received the ASCAP Leonard Bernstein Award for Educational Programming (2001, 2008) and the BPO/ECMEA Music Educators Award for Excellence (2008), created Kentucky Educational Television's Creating Music and Stories program, and participated in Children's Center and Enrichment Center chamber music residencies that provide arts enrichment experiences for disabled persons.

In addition to his post in Houston, Franz currently serves as Music Director of the Boise Philharmonic. Franz served as the Music Director of the Mansfield Symphony (2003-2010), Resident Conductor of the Buffalo Philharmonic (2005-2009), and Associate Conductor of the Louisville Orchestra (1997-2006). He continues as Music Director Emeritus of the Carolina Chamber Symphony, an orchestra that he founded, and provides educational programming workshops at the National Repertory Orchestra during the summer.

Franz received his Master of Music degree in conducting in 1992 as well as his Bachelor of Music degree in oboe performance in 1990 from the North Carolina School of the Arts. He has participated in conducting workshops in the Czech Republic, St. Petersburg (Russia), Nashville and the Festival at Sandpoint, and was a participant in the 1997 National Conductor Preview.

About the Houston Symphony: During the 2012-13 Season, the Houston Symphony will be in its 99th year as one of America's leading orchestras with a full complement of concert, community, education, touring and recording activities. Under the artistic leadership of Hans Graf, the orchestra's longest serving music director, the Symphony has established a reputation for innovative, powerful performances. With its Centennial Celebration on the horizon in 2013-14, 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 $28 million, the full-time ensemble of 87 professional musicians is the largest performing arts organization in Houston, presenting more than 280 concerts for 300,000 people annually. For tickets and more information, please visit www.houstonsymphony.org or call 713-224-7575.