The University’s premier orchestra, the 85-member Utah Philharmonia performs 6-8 full concerts a year, presenting the full spectrum of the symphonic repertoire. Recent performances have included such works as Holst's The Planets, Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite, Walton's Belshazzar's Feast, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5.
Members of the Phil comprise the pit orchestra each spring for the Lyric Opera Ensemble’s fully staged opera production in Kingsbury Hall, a valuable training experience for orchestral musicians. Recent opera productions have included Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Dialogues des Carmélites, L’Incoronazione di Poppea, Susannah, and in April 2013, Falstaff.
The Utah Philharmonia has performed by invitation the 2007 College Music Society and National Association of Schools of Music conferences, the 2005 Utah Music Educator’s Conference, at the 2003 Utah Arts Festival, and toured Austria in 2006. Students look forward to performing to sold out houses for its popular annual costumed Halloween concert. The orchestra also sponsors an annual concerto competition, offering winning students the opportunity to perform their winning pieces in concert with full orchestra.
The Phil has appeared under guest conductors Martyn Brabbins, Rauno Tikkanen and Wes Kenney. Membership is competitive and by audition only.
The Phil will be performing an exciting new piece next season: “Sadat" for percussion and chamber orchestra, by Mohammed Fairouz, with Dr. Michael Sammons as percussion soloist.
Fairouz is a young composer getting a lot of attention, and for good reason. His music speaks to the common thread of our humanity. His music has been performed at major venues around the country including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Boston’s Symphony Hall and The Kennedy Center, and throughout the United States, the Middle East, Europe, and Australia. Fairouz has been seen and heard on the BBC, NPR’s, The World, and has been profiled by the Wall Street Journal, Agence France Presse, Los Angeles Times, Symphony, Strings, and New Music Box, and been regularly featured on New York’s WQXR and on SiriusXM Satellite Radio. Fairouz regularly blogs about the intersection of arts and international affairs for the Huffington Post.
May 27, 2015