His name is Andres Orozco-Estrada and he’s from Colombia.
“I am excited about meeting Houstonians … that’s also … sorry, but ‘Houstonians’ sounds like heroes, that’s very good!”
Orozco-Estrada’s most immediately noticeable trait is his humor. Houston Symphony Board President Bob Peiser says he hopes his personality will help draw more diverse audiences to the Symphony.
“It’s also very important to be able to the community, communicate to the city, bring all sorts of people into Jones Hall that may not be comfortable coming into Jones Hall. We would really like people to enjoy the music that we perform here, no matter what background they come from, and we’d certainly like to increase the age diversity and bring a lot more younger people in as well and that’s a good thing for him to be a part of.”
Peiser says another asset Orozco-Estrada brings to the Houston Symphony is his ethnic background:
“Musical excellence, rapport with the musicians, good personality was key. To have a Hispanic in this position in this city is just a tremendous plus.”
Orozco-Estrada is currently the music director of the Tonkuenstler Orchestra in Vienna and the principal conductor of the Basque National Orchestra in Spain.
His contract as the Houston Symphony’s 16th music director starts with the 2014-15 season, but Orozco-Estrada will conduct 13 concerts as music director designate starting this fall.
Hans Graf, the Symphony’s longest-serving music director, will give up his post after this season, although he’s staying on as conductor laureate during the next two years.