Saint-Saëns got it right with his first cello concerto, widely believed to be one of the greatest ever written for the instrument, even by tough critics like Shostakovich and Rachmaninoff. The success of this piece catapulted the composer to stardom, and it’s only fitting that our audience should hear it performed by a major star: Joshua Roman.
Pair that with the dreamy playfulness of Ravel’s Ma mère l’Oye or “Mother Goose Suite,” written in 1910 for six-year-old Mimi and seven-year-old Jean, the children of the composer’s close friends. The piece has been featured regularly in popular culture, on albums, in television series, and movies.
Paul Hindemith and his wife loved playing piano duets by Classical period composer Carl Maria von Weber, and it was these pieces that inspired his ambitious Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber. Beloved by orchestras for its sumptuous harmonies and technical challenges, you’ll be amazed when you hear and see the artistry our Greenville Symphony musicians bring to this metamorphosis.
Versatility, passion, and innovation are the hallmarks of American conductor Janna Hymes. Renowned for her inspiring performances, musical depth and energetic presence, she has developed a reputation as an exciting, detailed communicator. Janna is currently the Artistic Director of the Sedona Symphony in Arizona.
Janna has conducted many orchestras nationally and abroad, including the West Virginia Symphony, Houston, Indianapolis, North Carolina, Costa Rica, National Orchestre de Lyon, and the Orquesta Sinfonica del Estado de Mexico. Upcoming performances include the Cortona Chamber Orchestra, the Greenville Symphony Orchestra and a return to the Sewanee Music Festival.
She is the proud recipient of several prestigious awards including a Geraldine C. and Emory M. Ford Foundation Grant; a top prize of the International Conducting Competition in Besancon, France; a distinguished Alumna Award from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and she is the recipient of a Fulbright Award.
Joshua Roman is a cellist, accomplished composer and curator whose performances embrace musical styles from Bach to Radiohead. Before setting off on his unique path as a soloist, Roman was the Seattle Symphony’s principal cellist – a job he began at just 22 years of age and left only two years later. He has since become renowned for his genre-bending repertoire and wide-ranging collaborations. Roman was named a TED Senior Fellow in 2015. His live performance of the complete Six Suites for Solo Cello by J.S. Bach on TED’s Facebook Page garnered nearly one million live viewers, with millions more for his Main Stage TED Talks/Performances, including an improvisational performance with Tony-winner/MacArthur Genius Grant recipient Bill T. Jones and East African vocalist Somi.
A Gramophone review of his 2017 recording of Aaron Jay Kernis’s Cello Concerto (written for Roman) proclaimed that “Roman’s extraordinary performance combines the expressive control of Casals with the creative individuality and virtuoso flair of Hendrix himself.” Recent highlights include performing standard and new concertos with the Colorado, Detroit, Jacksonville, Milwaukee, and San Francisco Symphonies. In addition to his other orchestral appearances Roman has collaborated with the JACK, St. Lawrence, and Verona Quartets and brings the same fresh approach to chamber music projects to his own series, Town Music at Town Hall Seattle.
Joshua Roman’s adventurous spirit has led to collaborations with artists outside the music community, including creating “On Grace” with Tony-nominated actor Anna Deavere Smith. His compositions are inspired by sources such as the poetry of Pulitzer Prize-winner Tracy K. Smith, and the musicians he writes for, such as the JACK Quartet, violinist Vadim Gluzman, and conductor David Danzmayr. Roman’s endeavors outside the concert hall have taken him to Uganda with his violin-playing siblings, where they played chamber music in schools, HIV/AIDS centers and displacement camps.
HEAR FROM THE CONDUCTOR: FREE PRE-CONCERT CONVERSATION AN HOUR BEFORE THE SHOW
Want to get to know the conductor and learn about the music before you experience it? Join Janna Hymes and Greenville Symphony Executive Director Jessica Satava for a pre-concert chat about the program.