This wonderful concert began with the naming of the Dr. George and Rev. Helen Henry conductors chair in recognition of the many years of dedicated service to the symphony and the community by the Henrys. They were in attendance, and the honor was announced by Maestro Richard Prior before the concert. The audience whole-heartedly applauded their approval! Here are a few photos:
As you can see, somewhat from the photos above, and more so below, the First United Methodist Church (FUMC) of LaGrange was decked for the Christmas season from top to bottom. Many people remarked at how beautiful the church looked. This set the scene for the lovely concert that would follow. These past concerts in the FUMC have been wonderful, and the December concert was the last scheduled concert at this venue. No one can predict what the new year will bring, but the plan has been for these smaller concerts to be a transitional step back to full concerts at Callaway Auditorium hopefully in 2022.
Highlighting the Wind Instruments
This concert was all winds. The evening of music began with Strauss and lovely long blends that were ethereal. It required a fairly large group of musicians as did the Mozart. The Mozart section also required a few instruments that are not seen very often and it was great that Maestro Prior pointed these out beforehand.
The program order was switched around a little bit from the published lineup. The Brass Quintet was flanked by the two larger groups of musicians. The five-piece ensemble blended wonderfully and performed some of the earliest know brass chamber pieces. Here are some images from the three sections of the concert.