Rochester Philharmonic ‘community concerts’ feature assistant conductor debut, young soloist

By in Fairport NY News

FAIRPORT, N.Y. (WROC) — It’s a big week for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra as
they’re performing four free community concerts this week, all at 7 p.m., as the RPO continues to celebrate their centennial.

The shows are:

Tuesday, October 3, 7 p.m., Fairport High School, 1 Dave Paddock Way, Fairport, NY 14450

Wednesday, October 4, 7 p.m., St. Theodore’s Catholic Church, 168 Spencerport Rd, Rochester, NY 14606

Thursday, October 5, 7 p.m., Williamson High School, 5891 State Rte 21, Williamson, NY 14589

Saturday, October 7, 7 p.m., Mt. Olivet Baptist Church, 141 Adams St, Rochester, NY 14608

Tuesday night at Fairport High School, the RPO’s new assistant conductor will make his debut, 25-year-old Jherrard Hardeman.

“(Theses) are pieces that are all inspired by places people would call home,” Hardeman said. “We have a fun encore in the Copeland piece that has the spirit of America, the talk-back attitude we have. The community shows give you a chance to go straight into people’s backyards, and get to know them where they are.”

These shows are also a chance for a special young soloist to share the stage with her hometown orchestra.

Catalina Wooldridge is a freshman at The Eastman School of Music. She graduated high school at 16. She’s the winner of 2023 Young Artist Audition Grand Prize Winner.

“The piece is called Hungarian Rhapsody by David Popper, it’s a super fun piece, I love playing it, and it’s very playful,” she said of the piece she’s playing with the RPO this run.

And as if the excitement of playing with the RPO isn’t enough, she’s coming to her hometown of Williamson on Thursday.

“I’m so excited, I can’t believe it, I feel really so lucky to be able to go back and I feel it’s kind of a way of giving back a little bit. I’m excited, yeah,” she said.

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