The Greenville Symphony Orchestra welcomes its 76th season with promising changes on the horizon, marking a momentous shift after 25 illustrious years.
Change in the Conductor’s Podium
The orchestra is on the brink of transformation as September witnesses its grand commencement. The orchestra’s podium, for the first time in a quarter of a century, will miss its regular occupant, conductor Edvard Tchivzhel. However, Tchivzhel hasn’t said his final goodbye; he will grace the podium during the orchestra’s “Holiday at Peace” concerts this December.
Conductor Contenders Step Forward
The season is electrified by the presence of six guest conductors, each with an eye on the coveted position of music director. Standing out among them, Geoffrey Robson, esteemed music director of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, sets the ball rolling. On September 9-10, the Peace Center will resonate with the sounds of “Quest and Destiny.” Under Robson’s expert guidance, compositions by the likes of Richard Strauss, Florence Price, and Johannes Brahms will be showcased.
Robson expressed his excitement, mentioning that everyone he converses with only has praises for the orchestra and the captivating aura of the Peace Center.
Rediscovering Florence Price
One of the most anticipated pieces Robson will lead is Florence Price’s “Ethiopia’s Shadow in America.” This 1932 creation delves deep into the Black experience. Price, in the early 20th century, emerged as a significant figure in American classical music. Yet, sadly, her brilliance was overshadowed after her demise in 1953.
A remarkable discovery in 2009 brought her back into the spotlight. Many of Price’s creations were found in her deserted summer residence near Chicago. This discovery led to a newfound appreciation for her works.
Robson emphasized the significance, noting how orchestras now recognize many American composers previously overlooked because of gender or ethnicity. Price’s compositions are now celebrated worldwide.