With orchestra musicians scattered all over the country, ROCO knows how to operate remotely. But last week the 39-member ensemble attempted a particularly complicated task: to perform “Anthem of Hope,” Anthony DiLorenzo’s four-minute composition from 39 different locations.
Long before audiences were forced to stay home, the Houston orchestra was deep into streaming. Long before anyone heard of “flattening the curve,” Houston’s ROCO was ahead of the curve. With the Covid-19 pandemic forcing Americans to seek entertainment and cultural enrichment on the Internet, the potential — and necessity — of streaming…
Ahead of Saturday’s ROCO Unchambered, we had a chance to chat with principal hornist Danielle Kuhlmann about her program, and the colorful threads of her musical story it unravels. Discover the family ties which inspired her career, and the tapestry of music that has shaped her life – in this ROCOInsider!
River Oaks CO achieves liftoff with premiere of celestial erhu concerto Mon Feb 10, 2020 at 11:42 am By Steven Brown When the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra commissioned Kevin Lau to write a concerto for erhu, the two-stringed Chinese instrument, he sidestepped the obvious approach. Rather than seek inspiration in the music or culture of…
This Saturday, we’re so excited to welcome back a returning collaborator for ROCO’s 90th world premiere commission – composer Kevin Lau! In this edition of ROCOInsider, we chatted with Kevin to learn more about the out-of-this-world inspiration for his newest work, “Between the Earth and Forever,” and what it’s like writing for the exotic instrument it features, the Chinese erhu. It all started with an iconic image from space – read on to hear how it captured his imagination, sparking a musical fusion of east and west!
ROCO isn’t playing around — and they’ve got the street cred to prove it. Fresh off releasing its debut album, Visions Take Flight, ROCO’s recording producer Blanton Alspaugh earned a nomination from Grammy voters in the “Producer of the Year, Classical” category. The album was conducted by the Houston-based chamber orchestra’s artistic partner Mei-Ann Chen, and the gratitude marks Alspaugh’s ninth nomination in the category and his 22nd nomination overall.
The first in a triptych of works honoring women musicians of the Holocaust, Bruce Adolphe’s “I Too Bleed, and Hope for Beauty” explores the incredible story of Alma Rosé – credited with saving the lives of 48 women through her leadership of the women’s orchestra of Auschwitz. Discover how even in the most unimaginable circumstances, music has an enduring power to heal and to save.
History isn’t always so rosy, but it tends to bend toward hope…The Holocaust is no exception to this record, and it provided the backdrop for ROCO’s upcoming concert Hope for Beauty.
Continuing ROCO’s Season 15 Unchambered series on Saturday, we next hand the reins over to concertmaster Scott St. John – for a program of “Morsels” revisiting his roots as a chamber musician, inspired by a very special summer in Vermont. In this ROCOInsider, discover the works for string quartet you’ll hear, and learn how his time at the Marlboro Music Festival spurred his course as a young musician, leading to a busy performing and teaching career!
Kicking off this season’s Unchambered series, Flair will feature an instrument familiar to many – the clarinet – but have you ever heard what it can really do? Learn from ROCO clarinetists Nathan Williams and Maiko Sasaki how they put together a program of duos which led them on an expedition of discovering new works, and revisiting old pieces they learned as young clarinetists, to narrate their stories of coming-of-age through music.
Following the orchestra’s opening concert, “Time for Hope,” more than 260 guests moseyed to the country club ballroom where members of the orchestra were seated at each table, making for musically-inspired dinner conversation.
What do colors sound like? Ahead of this weekend’s world premiere of Lisa Bielawa’s song cycle Centuries in the Hours, we had a chance to sit down with mezzo-soprano Laurie Rubin – who has been blind since birth – to explore how she sees the world, yielding a unique, and deeper way, of musical collaboration.