BW Alum “Enchants” at First Orchestra Concert of the Semester

The celestial sounds of the BW Symphony Orchestra’s music filled Gamble Auditorium once again on Friday. The first concert of the semester allowed for a quick trip around the globe with a variety of classical pieces from near and far.  

The performance showcased interim director of orchestral studies David Becker as the night’s conductor. The concert featured an original piece titled “Enchanted Moonscape” composed by Charles Rochester Young, the BW Conservatory Associate Dean. The piece featured some quirky orchestrations, including the use of several offstage percussionists, and even some sound effects simulating animal noises played on household objects by musicians sitting among the audience members. 

Highlighting the program, BW alum and winner of the 2020 Lauria Concerto Competition, Colin Henley stepped out to perform a 20th-century German piece entitled “Der Schwanendreher,” which translates to ‘The Swan Turner.’ Written by expressionist composer Paul Hindemith, the piece is a concerto designed for the viola and small chamber orchestra.  

“It was a ton of fun,” Henley told The Exponent after the performance. “I’m grateful that my first performance with a collegiate level orchestra was with Baldwin Wallace. Mostly because it’s the place where I met some of my closest friends and learned several of the key components of being a respectable musician and colleague.” 

Henley graduated in 2020 with a degree in viola performance. He is currently working on his master’s degree at the Cleveland Institute of Music.  

“I feel particularly lucky that I was able to perform with new and old friends in the ensemble, and for the several people able to attend virtually and in person,” Henley said. “The energy I receive to give a sincere performance is consistently related to the support I receive, and the support I felt was monumental last night.” 

Performing last night was a dream come true for Henley, he said. “I do want to thank the community at BW for allowing me to put my best foot forward as I continue the start of my music career.”  

The concert concluded with a Russian piece titled “Cappriccio Espagnol” composed by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. The piece was inspired by the Spanish folk melodies and written in the late 19th century. Becker said he chose to program the piece as a “showcase” for the orchestra’s principal players, many of whom had long and technically difficult solos.