The Moores School Symphony Orchestra

Concert Report Chamber Orchestra: The Moores School Symphony Orchestra

I am not sure of its history, but the Moores Opera’s Centre has always stood out among the audiences of Houston. Even as a kid in, the hall fascinated me and seemed to draw my attention like a beautiful butterfly emerging from its cocoon. It is located in the University of Houston, 120 School of Music Building. Admired by many for its mastery of architecture, the Moores Opera Centre hall oozes its majestic design and is probably the best university opera production facility in the U.S. It is certainly a beauty to behold. This was the location of The Moores Chamber Orchestra virtuosi performance on 30th August 2014.  The stage 70 feet high, 60 feet wide and 125 feet long was set in a concave manner (learned later was to help focus the sound). The dark wooden floor seemed to be in agreement with the performers’ attire for the night.

The concert was dedicated to the brave men and women who lost their lives or were injured during the bombing at the Boston marathon. In addition, The Moores School Symphony Orchestra thanked its dedicated members who contributed to the preparation of the program. The Moores School Symphony Orchestra is guided by well-learned individuals who ensure that all the programs are arranged to the best of their ability.

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Catherine is a fifth-year undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelors degree in music education and vocal performance from Moores School of Music. She has previously studied voice under the tutelage of Dr. Tracy Satterfield as part of the Houston Grand Opera‘s High School Voice Studio but is now studying voice with Cynthia Clayton. She is a soprano section leader and one of the conductors of the alcapella ensemble Ardore. She has appeared in numerous productions with the Moores Opera Center.

Arne Aimroth, the conductor, is a doctorate student in the studio of Franz Anton Krager. He graduated from the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Sweden where he is a native. He initially studied voice before conducting with the legendary Eric Ericson. He is conducted many prominent orchestras in the Scandinavia like Nordic Chamber Orchestra and Trondheim Symphony among many others. He has traveled across the globe due to his work in countries like Japan, Taiwan, Canada, US, and other European nations. At Moores School of Music, he is anticipating for March 2015 in order to conduct the Sibelius Second Symphony in March 2015 and the Catan’s Rappaccini’s Daughter in the following month.

Kris Chapman is beginning his third season as the Artistic Director of the Houston Heights Orchestra and is the newest member of Franz Anton Kroger conducting group. Kris is very talented and the orchestra has recorded an increased number of audience attendance, successful tackling of hard orchestral performances and an increase in the number of members joining Horal this has been accomplished under his supervision. He has an impressive resume listing him as Professor of Music at Lone Star College Montgomery among many other accomplishments.

The Moores School Symphony Orchestra

The Moores School Symphony Orchestra conclude their series on 30th August 2014 at the Opera Centre bringing an end to what can only be described as a successful tour. The program was nothing short of perfection. The audience was guided through each piece in a perfectly assembled manner; playing out classic pieces alongside some rarely heard masterpieces. The performance mined a vein of acerbity. The Moores School Symphony Orchestra produced an attractive complex layers but couched in the composers’ Spartan harmonic language.

Soprano, Lavelle Florence gave a marvelous version of Variociones Concertantes encasing it in two concert arias. She dazzled us with her highly energetic leading performance throughout the evening. This rendition was pleasing; the 8-note bass line did not wear thin thanks to the musical creativity of violinists

The performance was followed by the Overture to Don Giovanni, K 527. Unfortunately, this was rather tame and tired. However, it was ‘rescued’ by violinist Xin Liu who brought life back into the ensemble with the Concerto in D minor with two violins and trombone. The soloists in Ginastera’s Variaciones Ccncertantes exercised their well-practiced talents to create an abundance of exquisite musical conversation, supported with delicacy by the ensemble.  This performance was nothing short of a triumph. The first half of the evening concluded with a rambunctious performance of Vorrei Spiergarvi oh Dio.  The magnificence of these instruments was revealed over the course of the evening adding a layer of interest unlike any other.

We welcomed on stage harpist Cynthia Xiao (a soloist in Ginastera’s Variaciones Concertantes) and were instantly taken with her inescapable vivacity and stage presence. This component of the evening and was neat, simple, and satisfactory. No, che non sei capace  KV 419’s rendition created something of a show-stop combining elements from the tango, and the blues. This piece, written especially for the ensemble, got the audience moving. Soprano, Lavele Florence pulled out all the stops and technically began with Overture to Don Giovanni, a taxing five minutes of vocal display here infused with impressive character. In every segment, she could tell passages, not least where all eight lines come into octave-unison. She made greater impression in Comparioe vaestole virtuosi. In addition, she held her own, negotiating hurdles with comfort, even if the part’s highest notes stretched her intonation technique. She had an admirable technique and negotiated this aria’s emotional storms and technical obstacle course with conviction. Her upper range was steady and full, without unnerving squeaks. She demonstrated a firm style of delivery

The interludio per corde performance

The interludio per corde performance was nothing short of perfection. It displayed copious amounts of technical wizardry coupled with truckloads of character. It was like traveling through time, from the early sixties, to the 70 s and to the present time. The night could not have gotten any better than this, but The Moores proved me wrong. The String Quartet took on soloist duties in the interludio per corde with considerable success. As usual, the reading held surprises in dynamics and detail-work James Beauchamp, gave a riveting version of the violoncelli double concerto. His participation in the work’s entire progress was significant as he produced plenty of finely-assembled pieces. He maintained its gaiety, dramatizing this while maintaining taut and clean throughout with great simplicity.

The concert concluded in a smooth piece of in modo di Rondo per Orchestra. The Moores took to this score with confidence and produced an attractive complex, well balanced in its layers. This night was certainly a night well spent and would definitely advise you to try this group out.


















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