HOUSTON (CBS Houston) The Houston Symphony has hired its first Hispanic music director. In an announcement made this week, the organization hired the Colombian-born and Austrian-trained Andres Orozco-Estrada, who debuted with the Vienna Philharmonic in 2010.
The organization spent nearly three years searching for a music director, a position that was vacated when Hans Graf left after being music director for 12 years.
In 2009, Graf announced he would leave the Houston Symphony after the 2012-2013 season, giving the Houston Symphony a little more than three years to search for his replacement.
Symphony Board President Robert Peiser referred to Orozco-Estrada as a “rising conducting superstar.”
According to the Houston Symphony’s website: “Orozco-Estrada’s appointment was formally announced on the Jones Hall stage Wednesday, January 16, 2013 in front of several hundred people, including the orchestra, staff, board, local media and Houston’s Mayor, the Honorable Annise D. Parker.”
The symphony’s appointment of Orozco-Estrada comes on the heels of the symphony’s centennial.
Orozco-Estrada first worked with the symphony in October, and has a five-year contract that will officially begin in 2014.”Orozco-Estrada is fluent in Spanish, German and English,” the Houston Symphony website added.
Andrés Orozco-Estrada was born in December 1977 in Medellín, Colombia and had regularly conducted the Bogotá Philharmonics and the Colombian National Orchestra.