The Southern Nevada Symphony started its second season Nov. 14 with a two-hour concert at the Casa Blanca Showroom. The program was called “A Musical Thanksgiving” and was conducted by Dr. Selmer Spitzer, who also led the group last season.
The program started on a somber note with a moment of silence for the victims of the terrorist attack in Paris. Viola player Barry Bowers then played a haunting version of “Les Marseillais,” the national anthem of France.
The program began with narrator Jim Dick introducing “Amadeus” by Mozart. Dick gave the standing room only audience a brief history of each piece that was played which made the music even more enjoyable.
The last piece before intermission was “Danny Boy” by Lewis J. Buckley. In a surprise, the well-known song was played solo on a euphonium by Rich Campos. The euphonium is similar to a tuba in shape but smaller, and is known for rich, deep tones.
After “Danny Boy,” Susan Thiriot, a music teacher from Las Vegas, brought out a French horn for Campos who then gave a short but fun version of the “Flight of the Bumble Bee.” Campos, in his white tuxedo was a great treat for the audience and was particularly fun when he brought out his hand puppet which took bows for the audience.
After intermission the symphony played several popular favorites including “Romeo and Juliet” and the “William Tell Overture.” The program ended with “Espana Cani” which is played before bull fights in Spain. Fans of “Dancing with the Stars” immediately recognized the music as the dance paso doble, which is a staple of the program.
The concert showed the great progress the symphony has made since an excellent first season. The next concert is scheduled for Feb. 20 and will feature first violinist Walter White of Moapa playing Mendelsshon’s “E Minor Violin Concerto.