By Owen Hahn
With summer drawing to a close, the Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra (HSO) is preparing for its 2023-2024 season. The orchestra will play three masterworks’ concerts, the traditional holiday concert and, making a return to the stage where the HSO played its first show in 1971, two chamber orchestra concerts. All performances will begin at 3 p.m.
On Saturday, September 30, the season commences by honoring Dr. Thomas Joiner in Past, Present & Future. The concert will cover Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3, Tchaikovsky’s Romeo & Juliet and Schindler’s List by John Williams, all favorites of the former music director whose tenure lasted 21 years. Among orchestra members will be his daughter, Dianna Joiner, on violin and Douglas Weeks, a frequent collaborator, on piano.
This season’s chamber orchestra concerts will be held in the Hendersonville High School auditorium, marking the first time the HSO has performed at the venue since 2007. Set for November 18, the first chamber orchestra concert, Strings Attached II, is dance-themed and consists of string instruments only. The program will include Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings and Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 6.
The orchestra will herald spring with Hope and Promise on March 9. The main attraction will be Schumann’s phrenetic Piano Concerto, which will be complemented by Chevalier de Saint-Georges’ Symphony No. 2 and Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony. Following suit on April 13, Spring Awakens will observe the blooming vernal season with Dvorak’s Symphony No. 8 and Weber’s Oberon Overture, along with welcoming the winner of the HSO’s Young Artist’s Competition to the stage.
The last show of the season will be on May 25. The concert will begin with Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for Winds, followed by North Carolina composer Peter B. Kay’s to be Determined, which serves as a mirror image to the closing piece, Haydn’s Farewell Symphony, the finale of which sees the orchestra exit the stage one by one.
John Young Shik Concklin, now in his second season as music director, noted the experience of living in the pandemic as influencing this season’s theme. “Musically speaking, we’re picking pieces that have some nostalgia to them, pieces that are about the here and now, and pieces about being hopeful for the future,” he says.
Tickets are on sale at HendersonvilleSymphony.org. The venue for orchestra concerts, the Blue Ridge Community College Conference Hall, is located at 49 East Campus Drive, Flat Rock. The Hendersonville High School auditorium, is located at 1 Bearcat Boulevard, in Hendersonville. Owen Hahn, The Laurel’s summer intern, is a student at UNCA and a music enthusiast.