February 9, 2016

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

VSO Performance Features Ballet, Conversation, a World Premiere Feb. 13

VALDOSTA — The American Prize-winning Valdosta Symphony Orchestra will present Casual Classics: The Art of Expression, an informal evening of music, ballet, and conversation, at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 13, in Whitehead Auditorium. Tickets are on sale now.

Casual Classics: The Art of Expression features music from Ludwig Minkus’s Don Quixote, Sergei Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet, and Leo Délibes’s Coppélia; performances by the Valdosta State University Repertory Dancers and Carla Amâncio, Fhilipe Teixeira, and Andre Valladon, principal dancers from Dance Alive National Ballet; and the world premiere of James Oliverio’s Trumpet Concerto No. 1: World House with trumpet soloist, teacher, and recording artist Randolph Lee.

“It’s exciting to have a show with such different components …,” said Dr. Howard Hsu, VSO music director and conductor.

The Trumpet Concerto No. 1: World House was written by Oliverio, an American composer and educator, to honor the life's work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to and spread awareness of King's concept of the World House, or nonviolent coexistence. The yearlong project was funded by the National Endowment for the Arts in Washington, D.C., and undertaken in collaboration with the Martin Luther King Jr. Papers Collection and the Morehouse College Department of Music in Atlanta.

Oliverio’s World House Project also led him to create Songs from the World House. These three short songs — A Message of Love (https://vimeo.com/14982537), A World-Wide House (https://vimeo.com/153640116), and One Human Dream (https://vimeo.com/149838339) — were woven from the Trumpet Concerto No. 1: World House melodies and premiered by the world-renowned Morehouse College Glee Club.   

Dr. Vicki Crawford, director of the Martin Luther King Jr. Papers Collection, will be in Valdosta Thursday, Feb. 11, through Saturday, Feb. 13, to speak to university and community groups about King’s work and values, as well as the importance of his legacy in the 21st century. She will be accompanied by Oliverio, professor of music, professor of digital arts and sciences, and executive director of the Digital Worlds Institute at the University of Florida. Together they will offer insight into how the World House Project represents a unique civic and musical collaboration and share their vision for it to be shared and performed across the country. 

“It’s an honor to be entrusted with a world premiere, especially one that honors the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,” said Hsu. “It will be a momentous occasion …. I know that our audience will enjoy what promises to be a great evening of artistic expression.”

Tickets for Saturday’s performance, which is sponsored by Houston and Co., are $27 for adults and $10 for students. Senior, military, and VSU faculty and staff discounts are available.

Whitehead Auditorium is located on the first floor of VSU’s Fine Arts Building, at the intersection of Brookwood Drive and Oak Street.

Visit www.valdostasymphony.org or contact Sarah Cain with VSU’s College of Arts Outreach Office at (229) 333-2150 or slcain@valdosta.edu to reserve tickets or learn more. Tickets are also available at the VSO Box Office before each event.

Community groups interested in meeting with Dr. Vicki Crawford and James Oliverio should call (352) 294-2000 or email james@digitalworlds.ufl.edu for more information.

Visit https://www.facebook.com/vstatenews/ to read more about the guest artists featured in Saturday’s performance.

On the Web:


NOTE: The Downtown Symphony Club, a social group for young and young-at-heart music lovers and professionals, will meet after the concert for food and drinks at 10 p.m. at The Bistro in Downtown Valdosta. Contact Dr. Shannon Lowe, principal bassoonist with the VSO, at srlowe@valdosta.edu for more information. Club members receive a discount on single tickets, exclusive dinner deals on concert nights, as well as the chance to meet and socialize with the soloist, conductor, and orchestra musicians, and more. 

About the Valdosta Symphony Orchestra:

Created in 1990, the Valdosta Symphony Orchestra serves both the cultural life of Valdosta and the regional academic mission of Valdosta State University. The high standard of performance of the orchestra enables it to attract guest soloists of national and international renown to the Valdosta community. The orchestra's membership is a unique blend of resident artist-faculty, students studying professional music disciplines, talented community performers, and carefully selected professionals from a five-state region. Supported by an Advisory Board of Directors, the Valdosta Symphony Guild, Valdosta State University, corporate sponsors, and hundreds of individual patrons, the orchestra has become an important part of the cultural life of the entire region. Its live performance of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony won the 2014 American Prize in Orchestral Performance.

Valdosta State University’s 2013-2019 Strategic Plan represents a renewal of energy and commitment to the foundational principles for comprehensive institutions.

Implementation of the plan’s five goals, along with their accompanying objectives and strategies, supports VSU’s institutional mission and the University System of Georgia’s mission for comprehensive universities. 

The story above demonstrates VSU's commitment to meeting the following goals: 

Goal 1: Recruit, retain, and graduate a quality, diverse student population and prepare students for roles as leaders in a global society.

Goal 3: Promote student, employee, alumni, retiree, and community engagement in our mission.

Goal 4: Foster an environment of creativity and scholarship.

Goal 5: Develop and enhance Valdosta State’s human and physical resources.

Visit http://www.valdosta.edu/administration/planning/strategic-plan.php to learn more.