Located just up the proverbial road from Houston, the Round Top Music Festival kicked off on June 1 and will continue through July 12. Nearly 100 young musicians from seven countries, 26 states and over 45 conservatories and universities have gathered at the distinguished summer music institute in the Texas Hill Country. Under the mentorship of 38 faculty-artists and 10 guest conductors, the students will receive intense training and perform orchestral masterpieces, contemporary works and chamber music over the next six weeks.
Preparing the young musicians for the Opening Orchestral Concert is Christian Arming, who will conduct a program of Carl Maria von Weber’s Oberon Overture, Edvard Grieg’s Piano Concerto in a minor (with James Dick as soloist) and Witold Lutoslawski’s Concerto for Orchestra on Saturday, June 7 at 7:30pm at the Festival Concert Hall.
Christian Arming, 40, is one of Austria’s most sought after conductors, highly successful in both the symphonic and operatic field. Since 2003 he has been Music Director of the New Japan Philharmonic in Tokyo, and in September 2011 he assumed the position of Music Director of the Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège.
Houston Public Media’s Catherine Lu spoke with Maestro Arming about his early conducting days, his history with the Round Top Music Festival, what he would do if he weren’t a conductor, and this weekend’s program.
*This interview was recorded on June 3 with Christian Arming on the phone from Round Top, TX.