Speck to conduct Sunday

January 20, 1995|By Phil Greenfield | Phil Greenfield,Special to The Sun

Scott Speck, the energetic new conductor of the Chesapeake Youth Symphony Orchestra, has been on the job since June but will appear for the first time before the concertgoing public Sunday evening.

The 7 p.m. Key Auditorium performance will feature "Hungarian Dances" by Brahms, selections from the "Carmen" suite by Bizet, John Adams' "Short Ride in a Fast Machine" and the blockbusting Fourth Symphony of Tchaikovsky.

Mr. Speck, 33, is a Yale-trained maestro who studied conducting in Germany before earning his master's degree from the University of Southern California. He came to Annapolis after serving as associate conductor of the Honolulu Symphony, an ensemble to which he still returns several times each season as its music adviser.

He also has found plenty of work on the mainland. In addition to his CYSO duties, Mr. Speck will make his Baltimore Symphony debut shortly in a series of BSO youth concerts and looks forward to a pair of appearances with the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra in February and concerts with the Victoria Symphony in Texas in March.

And he has been making his presence felt on the home front. At his suggestion, a third orchestra has been added to the CYSO family: a "Repertory Orchestra" for youngsters too advanced for the String Ensemble and not-quite-ready-for-prime-time CYSO. The Repertory Orchestra debuts under David Choo, a Peabody Conservatory doctoral student, on March 19.

Recently, all three orchestras spent a full day at Anne Arundel Community College, where they were coached in small groups by professional players and concluded by performing for each other.

Mr. Speck credits his active CYSO board for this sudden expansion of the orchestra. "They've been amazing sports to have said OK to all this," he said.

The new conductor also has done much recruiting since taking the CYSO reins. Students from the Washington area come to Annapolis for rehearsals each Thursday, along with several students from the Baltimore School for the Arts.

"We want talented young players from all over the area to know that we have an orchestra for them," Mr. Speck said.

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