A Houston punk rock legend front and center at a classical concert, a virtuoso concertmaster, a stellar bass-baritone singing nursery rhymes and tombstone epitaphs, and three world premieres. Throw in a couple of Dvořák’s Legends and the rarely heard Wood Notes by William Grant Still, and we have a strange brew of a program that surprised and engaged.
Like a ringmaster leads a circus, conductors direct classical music concerts, presenting various acts or compositions while serving as an intermediary between the audience and the performers.
But the show must go on, with or without, and River Oaks Chamber Orchestra is here to prove it’s possible to have a concert without a conductor, with the return of its annual conductorless concert this weekend at the Church of St. John the Divine.
The band’s most pronounced impression was made in Houston, but fans of ’70s punk reveled in the regional variety the form offered.
One such fan is Dan Visconti, a classical composer who recently composed “Legendary Love,” a piece of music inspired by Christian and The Hates that the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra will premiere later this month.