Campus News 2011
For Immediate Release
November 8, 2011
The Symphony of the Hills to celebrate local talent and Christmas
Kerrville’s Symphony of the Hills will present its second concert of the 2011-2012 season, “Rising Stars & the Many Moods of Christmas,” at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 1 at The Cailloux Theater, 910 Main St., Kerrville.
The first half of the concert will showcase talented young Hill Country musicians Jonathan Whitney, a senior at Tivy High School; Gavin Thompson, a music student of Kevin McCormick; and Angela Johnson, a freshman at Baylor University and daughter of Symphony of the Hills musicians Deana and Phil Johnson (see bios below).
After intermission the Grand Symphony Chorus, under the direction of Chorusmaster Don McAvoy, will join the orchestra in a program including Irving Berlin’s “God Bless America,” featuring a solo by Andrea DeLeon and narration by Juan Carlos, Jean Sibelius’s “Song of Peace,” Suite Three of “The Many Moods of Christmas” arranged by Robert Shaw and Robert Russell Bennett, and and the Hallelujah Chorus by Handel.
The Symphony’s Painted Violins will be on display before the concert at 6:30 PM and at intermission. Light refreshments will be served. The violins have been painted or decorated by local artists and will be auctioned during the March 8, 2012 concert to raise funding to expand the reach of the Symphony in the Hill Country.
Tickets can be purchased online at www.symphonyofthehills.org/tickets or by calling the Symphony office at 830-792-7469 or the Cailloux box office, 830-896-9393.
Angela Johnson, daughter of Symphony of the Hills members Philip and Deana Johnson, began studying violin at the age of four in her hometown of San Antonio. In her 15 years of study she has won numerous awards for solo and chamber music performances at the local and state level, and was selected as a member of the Texas Music Educators Association All-State Symphony Orchestra in 2009. Angela has performed in master classes for world-renowned artists including Gil Shaham, Todd Phillips, Gary Levinson, and Tai Murray. Angela is currently a sophomore studying violin performance at Baylor University where she performs regularly with both the Baylor University Symphony Orchestra and the Waco Symphony Orchestra.
Gavin Thompson has been studying classical guitar for eleven years, first in Billing, Montana, and more recently with Kevin McCormick in Kerrville. Under Mr. McCormick’s guidance, Gavin has developed into a outstanding young guitarist. He has participated in several guitar ensembles and joined Kevin McCormick in performing with the Symphony of the Hills in a 2008 concert. In June 2009, Gavin performed a solo recital in the Rockbox Theater in Fredericksburg, featuring Spanish, classical, and contemporary music. Gavin is currently enrolled in Austin Community College and plans to transfer to the University of Texas at Austin to pursue studies in International Business Relations.
Jonathan Whitney is a 17 year old senior band student at Tivy High School. He is drum major of the marching band and plays flute and piccolo in the school’s Honors Band. He is also active in the jazz band at the school. Jonathan has been a member of the Hill Country Youth Orchestra for the past four years and is serving his first year in the Youth Orchestra of San Antonio’s top orchestra. A well-rounded young person, Jonathan is a top scholar and member of Tivy High School’s National Honor Society and is also involved in a local youth bowling team and the First Baptist Church in Kerrville. Jonathan’s wish is to pursue a college degree in Music Therapy with a possible double major in flute performance. He has hopes to attend either Berklee College of Music in Boston, Texas State University, or the University of Oregon.
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