Classical music is in the air at the University of Houston. The sounds of Beethoven, Strauss, Stravinsky, Prokofiev and other great composers can be heard in the concert halls and rehearsal rooms of UH’s Moores School of Music. The University’s Immanuel and Helen Olshan Texas Music Festival (TMF) is in full swing with concerts and classes on campus.
The festival will deliver performances on campus and at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, but musicians also are taking their talents into the community.
The festival is extending its musical reach with mini-concerts at Houston area retirement facilities and Houston’s Monarch School, which educates students with neurological differences (including autism, attention deficit disorder, anxiety and brain injury).
“We’ve made it a priority to take our student musicians into the city,” said Alan Austin, the festival’s general and artistic director. “We’re bringing music to people who can’t make it to the Moores Opera House or to The Woodlands.”
Another stop on TMF’s community tour is Houston Methodist Hospital. Every Tuesday in June, festival musicians will perform in the hospital’s Crain Garden. Concerts are presented at noon by the festival in conjunction with Methodist’s Center for Performing Arts Medicine. Music from these performances will be broadcast in other wings of the hospital for patients and visitors to enjoy.
“It’s so wonderful that Houston Methodist Hospital can recognize outstanding young professional musicians participating in the Texas Music Festival,” said Jefferson Todd Frazier, director of the Center for Performance Arts Medicine. “The TMF summer performance series at Houston Methodist Hospital, underwritten through our Margaret Alkek William Crain Garden Performance Series, has become a treasured annual event that supports the environment of the hospital, where patients and staff seek solace, inspiration, an escape, beauty and strength. Thank you to U of H and TMF for making Houston such a unique place!”
Crain Garden concerts are free and open to the public. The next performance is June 9, featuring student chamber musicians. Student pianists will perform on June 16. On June 23, another group of student chamber musicians will perform in at the hospital.
“Concerts such as these are very meaningful for Houstonians,” Austin said. “They also are very important for our student musicians. These intimate performances allow them to see firsthand how the power of music enriches people’s lives.”
The 26th annual Texas Music Festival runs through June 27 with public concerts and specialized institutes delivering unique educational opportunities for music students. To learn more about TMF and its schedule of performances, visit the festival’s website.