Alexandria Symphony Presents an Evening of Strings

Posted Jan 09, 2020 | ASO News, Press Releases, 

Alexandria, VA—The Alexandria Symphony Orchestra (ASO) continues its 2019-2020 Season on Saturday, February 15, 2020 (8:00 p.m.) and Sunday, February 16, 2020 (3:00 p.m.), under the direction of Maestro James Ross. In his second year as Music Director with the ASO, Ross endeavors to feature forgotten voices in the concert hall alongside the great masterpieces, and to present symphonic music in unconventional and creative ways.

Celebrated classical guitarist Berta Rojas joins the ASO, performing Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Guitar Concerto No. 1 in D major, considered one of the premier classical guitar concertos and composed for the legendary Andrés Segovia. Grammy-nominated and renowned among the most influential women in the Hispanic world, Ms. Rojas was named by the Kennedy Center as a Fellow of the Americas.

Opening and closing the program are works of two great masters: Mozart’s Serenata notturna and Schubert’s Symphony No. 5. Mozart’s serenade features a solo string quartet and string orchestra in three lively movements with virtuosic solos and comical exchanges. Schubert’s rousing and lyrical Fifth Symphony reflects Mozart’s compositional character with lighter instrumentation and elegant melodies.

The program incorporates Maestro Ross’s own arrangement, an expansion of the Andante movement from Florence Price’s String Quartet in G major. “Florence Price’s time has come,” remarks Ross. “Her compositions are re-emerging with renewed popularity and recognition of her genius.” Price was the first African American woman to have a composition presented by a major orchestra (Chicago Symphony in 1933). A new festival called Price Fest highlights her work, held at the University of Maryland each year.