Worthington Chamber Orchestra (WCO) is thrilled to announce the 2023-2024 season under the direction of its founding music and artistic director, Antoine T. Clark. This season promises a captivating blend of masterworks from both renowned and underrepresented composers, three highly anticipated world premieres, expanded educational and family-friendly programming, a new chamber music series, and exhilarating collaborations. Celebrating its 11th season, the WCO continues its mission to support local artists while providing diverse and dynamic programming that entertains, inspires, and fosters music education.
The overarching theme of this season, Woven Stories, is a vibrant fusion of music with the artistry of local and nationally acclaimed fiber artists – a tribute to the diverse cultures of Worthington and Central Ohio. From Asian to African American to Balkan/Eastern European influences, these cultural tapestries become the heart of this season, exemplifying WCO’s commitment to fostering an inclusive community within and around the chamber orchestra. The Benedicta Enrile Masterworks Series: Woven Stories comprises three inspiring concerts: Stories from the East, American Stories of Hope, and Stories from Worlds Old and New. In addition to the eagerly awaited premieres by distinguished composers Dr. Ching-chu Hu, Dr. Mark Lomax II, and Dr. Vera Stanojevic, audiences will hear classics such as Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade, Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring Suite, and Antonín Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 in E minor. Local guest artists include violinist Alicia Hui, UCelli: The Columbus Cello Quartet, the New World Singers of the Columbus Children’s Choir under the artistic direction of Jeanne Wohlgamuth, and fiber artists Celeste Malvar-Stewart, Mary Madison, and Scott Hanratty.
Expanding its commitment to education and families, the WCO introduces additions to its Education and Family Series, WorthingTunes, and a collaboration with The Ohio State University Opera Theatre program. The Halloween-themed young people’s concert, Danse Macabre, returns to the Peggy R. McConnell Arts Center (MAC) and Worthington elementary schools. Embracing a new partnership with the Worthington Libraries, WorthingTunes offers an engaging musical experience for preschoolers and early elementary-aged children. Among the highlights is a musical rendition of the beloved tale Ferdinand the Bull by Munro Leaf, with music composed by Matthew Naughtin. WCO joins forces with The Ohio State University Opera Theatre program for a production of Engelbert Humperdinck’s timeless opera, Hansel and Gretel, taking the stage at the MAC.
The new WCO Chamber Music Series is a trio of Thursday evening chamber music concerts in the Bronwynn Theatre at the MAC, designed to offer a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the mastery of three eminent chamber works by Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert. The concerts include An Evening with Mozart: Gran Partita; An Evening with Beethoven: Septet in E-flat major, and An Evening with Schubert: Octet in F major. Mozart’s Gran Partita will receive an additional performance at St. Mary Catholic Church, nestled in the heart of German Village, as part of the St. Mary Concert Series.
Prepare to embark on an unforgettable musical journey with the Worthington Chamber Orchestra’s 2023-2024 season: Woven Stories, where melodies interweave with fiber art, bringing to life the rich tapestry of cultures that define our community.