‘Andrés Fest’ honors outgoing Houston Symphony Music Director Andrés Orozco-Estrada

Andrés Orozco-Estrada / courtesy of the Houston Symphony

Now in his farewell season, Andrés Orozco-Estrada’s eight seasons as Music Director of the Houston Symphony have been marked by world premieres, multimedia presentations, recording projects, regular touring, and his appointment of 25 new orchestra musicians – including current concertmaster Yoonshin Song. He also carries the distinction of being the orchestra’s first Hispanic music director.

To honor the conductor’s contributions to the orchestra and to the city’s musical life, the Houston Symphony is planning Andrés Fest: A Symphonic Celebration, March 18 – 27, 2022.

The two-week music festival will feature repertoire associated with the conductor’s time with the organization, according to a press release – including works commissioned by the Houston Symphony during his tenure, seven solo performances by Symphony musicians, works by two former composers-in-residence (Gabriela Lena Frank and Jimmy López Bellido), and an arrangement by Orozco-Estrada himself.

Musical highlights include the world premiere commission of Bruce Broughton’s Horn Concerto (with Principal Horn William VerMeulen), the Houston premiere of Wynton Marsalis’s Tuba Concerto (with Principal Tuba Dave Kirk), and the world premiere of Kyle Rivera’s arrangement of works by 18th-century composer George Bridgetower.

Concerts and program details will be announced in January 2022.

Orozco-Estrada’s tenure also notably overlapped with the pandemic. Though COVID-19 travel complications forced him to be absent from Houston for over a year during the pandemic, the orchestra continued its concerts through livestreaming and was among the first in the country to return to in-person performances.

Orozco-Estrada’s final performances with the Houston Symphony as Music Director will be April 29 – May 1. He will continue to serve as Music Director of the Vienna Symphony.

His successor, Juraj Valčuha, begins his role as the Houston Symphony’s next Music Director in the 2022-23 season.

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