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Open Mic Night V with SOLI Chamber Ensemble

Although you don’t have to be a musician to enjoy classical music, we suspect there’s a pretty good chance that many members of the classical music audience grew to appreciate the genre through exposure in school, either through band, choir, or orchestra.

So when we made the call to perform at our studios for TPR and SOLI Chamber Ensemble’s fifth annual Open Mic Night, we weren’t disappointed with the outpouring of talent and creativity that applied to participate.

Eight performances were recorded on Sunday, November 14, 2021 at TPR’s Malú and Carlos Alvarez Theater before a small audience of family members and close friends.

In keeping with SOLI Chamber Ensemble’s mission to present contemporary music, all selections chosen by performers had to have been written after 1970. Some musicians brought their own compositions, some performed in small groups, one performer brought a computer monitor to display animations on screen as he rapped upon a snare drum, and one composer, Mark Gurrola, featured a live drink mixer on stage as percussion.

Listen to this special episode of “Performance Saturday” in the player at the top of the page. Below are the performers and the pieces they played. Our thanks to SOLI Chamber Ensemble for this continued partnership, and we look forward to hearing from you at the next Open Mic Night!

  1. Gregory Messa performs "Mentacide" by John Psathas
  2. Kevin Larz Phillips performs his own piece, "The Timeless Tide" (Find him online here)
  3. Josue Mora and Sabrina Stovall perform Gordon Jacob's "Duo for Clarinet and Bassoon"
  4. Nathan Cone performs Philip Glass's "Metamorphosis I"
  5. Josue Mora performs Barry Cockroft's "Black and Blue"
  6. Joseph Buechner performs the theme from "Schindler's List" by John Williams
  7. John Nikolatos and Catherine Moree perform excerpts from the "Mississippi Gulf Coast Suite" by Mark Petering, and "Tropical Style" by Michio Aramaki
  8. Composer Mark Gurrola is joined by Elijah Ayala, Sandra Gurrola, and Gustavo Garcia for his own work, "Margarita."

Nathan has been with TPR since 1995, when he began working on classical music station KPAC 88.3 FM, as host of “Tuesday Night at the Opera.” He soon learned the ropes on KSTX 89.1 FM, and volunteered to work practically any shift that came his way, on either station. He worked in nearly every capacity on the radio before moving into Community Engagement, Marketing, and Digital Media. His reporting and criticism has been honored by the Houston Press Club and Texas Associated Press.