Society / The Seen

Young Musicians Play for a Gold Medal in Houston: Winner Gets a Coveted Symphony Solo

BY // 06.21.17
photography Anthony Rathbun

What: The 42nd Houston Symphony Ima Hogg Competition

Where: Rice University’s Stude Concert Hall

PC Moment: It was a night of musical elegance as the four finalists in the revered, international multi-instrument competition each performed a concerto alongside the Houston Symphony, led by Daniel Hege, guest conductor and music director of the Wichita Symphony. Clarinetist Joseph Morris received top honors, selected by judges Tito Muñóz, music director of the Phoenix Symphony; acclaimed concert pianist Andrew von Oeyen; and Matthew Oberstein, vice president and manager of Artists and Attractions for Opus 3 Artists.

A graduate of USC Thornton School of Music, Morris received a cash prize of $25,000, a gold medal and a solo appearance with the Houston Symphony at the Donor and Subscriber Appreciation Concert in July. The Grace Woodson Memorial Award was presented by Tracy and John Dennis, grandson of Grace Woodson, who was a close friend of Miss Ima Hogg.

The finalists included second prize winner cellist Rainer Crosett, third prize winner violinist I-Jung Huang, and fourth prize winner pianist Alan Woo. In all, the competition attracted close to 80 candidates, performing on 10 instruments.

Before the concert competition, donors contributing $1,000 or more to the event were hosted at a cocktail reception at the Glasscock School of Continuing Studies.

Who: Chair Barbara McCelvey, Houston Symphony CEO Mark Hanson and wife Christina, Pat McCelvey, Nancy Willerson, Susan and Dennis Carlyle, Robin Angly and Miles Smith, Lilly and Thurmon Andress, Ellen and Alan Holzberg, Heidi and David Massin, Helen and Jim Shaffer, Beth Wolff, Vicki West, Alana Spiwak and Sam Stolbum.

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