The Youth Orchestras of San Antonio has an interesting concert scheduled for this weekend. I spoke recently to YOSA Music Director Troy Peters.
“This Saturday, YOSA’s going to be holding our annual concerto competition. We’ve got 10 of our most advanced musicians, who are going to be playing at two o’clock on Saturday afternoon, at St. David’s Episcopal Church. And then, one of them will be named a winner, and will appear as a soloist with the San Antonio Symphony.”
They’re called YOSA, Youth Orchestras of San Antonio and there’s a concert coming up that has a real sizzle to it. And that concert has a decidedly interesting theme.
“Music about freedom, from different angles.”
Troy Peters is YOSA’s Music Director.
“We’ve got Aaron Copland’s 'Lincoln Portrait'—this amazing, inspiring piece of music. And then we’ve got Shostokovich’s Fifth Symphony about a composer struggling for his life in the midst of a Totalitarian regime.”
I had to ask Peters how he manifests musically concepts of freedom.
The Tobin Center for the Performing Arts continues to roll out events. At mid-month it’s featuring Youth Orchestras of San Antonio. Here’s YOSA’s Music Director Troy Peters with the program's layout.
“A performance of "Peter and the Wolf," featuring YOSA and the Children’s Chorus of San Antonio. And we’ll surround that beloved family classic with a bunch of music exploring the cultural heritage of San Antonio,” he said.
Peters explained the reason for the wide program schedule in addition to "Peter and the Wolf."
One of San Antonio’s iconic cultural attributes gets a new leader, although to call him new might be a slight exaggeration.
“I’m really excited about it. I’ve been interim director for the past year,” said Brandon Henson, who has worked at Youth Orchestras of San Antonio for quite some time but is now their executive director.
“(We've) got a lot of exciting opportunities ahead with YOSA," he said.
Turns out Henson has an interesting backstory himself.
The Youth Orchestras of San Antonio have just two more performances before taking it on the road. YOSA actually comprises several youth orchestras, encouraging kids to find their own musical paths. Music Director Troy Peters gives us the lowdown on the next performance.
“This Sunday we’re going to be offering one of the big masters of the repertoire, Mahler’s First Symphony. But we’re doing it as a guided tour," he said.
Through the orchestra, Peters will do a stop-and-start performance, with explanations to present in-depth musical elements to the audience.
The halls of Geekdom are normally filled with techies workshopping the next killer app or the next innovation in cloud computing. But this weekend there was a different type of brain storm at the downtown offices.
Asia Ciaravino, president of the San Antonio Playhouse, stood in front of a computer project screen as she pitched their big idea to expert entrepreneurs. Ciaravino and five other arts groups just went through the three-day startup process where they learned to re-think their approach to business.
The upcoming Youth Orchestras of San Antonio concert on Monday night promises something big and unusual.
"We have collaborated with SAY Sí, this wonderful, after school, year-round arts program for high school students, to create new art inspired by [Modest Petrovich] Mussorgsky’s 'Pictures at an Exhibition,' " said YOSA Music Director Troy Peters.
SAY Sí does with arts largely what YOSA does with music, gives young people a creative outlet. Peters explained exactly what they're doing with SAY Si.