On November 11, ROCO presents “Courageous Catalysts”, featuring a new commission by Michael Gandolfi. The new work, titled Houston: September 12, 1962, celebrates the 100th birthday of President John F. Kennedy and the courage of people who fight for change.
Michael Stern conducts the program, which includes Jean Sibelius’ Symphony No. 7 in C major, op. 105, the composer’s final published symphony, Beethoven’s Overture to Leonore No. 3, and Bruce Adolphe’s I Will Not Remain Silent, a violin concerto inspired by the life of German-American rabbi and civil rights leader Joachim Prinz. Throughout the concerto, the violin, played by ROCO concertmaster and featured soloist, Scott St. John, represents the voice of Prinz, while the orchestra represents opposing forces – Nazi Germany in the first movement and America during the Civil Rights era in the second movement.
ROCO has also commissioned a new fanfare for orchestra and chorus, composed by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts. Entitled The Big Heart, the work explores Houston’s response to Harvey in the context of the city’s selfless sheltering of the victims of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The piece features a lyric by renowned librettist Mark Campbell, and will be performed in collaboration with Houston Chamber Choir.
ROCO’s founder, artistic director and principal oboist Alecia Lawyer said of the premieres: “I wanted to find a way to reach across Houston’s vibrant arts community and collectively embrace our wonderful city,” and ROCO managing director Amy Gibbs added: “Our hope is for these pieces to illustrate how Houston is strengthened by our diversity and ability to build relationships to support one another.”
The Church of St. John the Divine
2450 River Oaks Boulevard
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