Garrido Conducts Houston Latin Philharmonic
Musicians must promote and disseminate all types of artistic expression among the multicultural city of Houston. Dr. Glenn Garrido, chair of music at University of St. Thomas, is doing his part by conducting the Houston Latin American Philharmonic Orchestra, also known as the Latin Phil, the first professional orchestra in the United States created exclusively to present full concerts of Latin American music, both original and arrangements.
According to the 2010 Census Bureau, 43.8 percent of the Houston population is Hispanic, but there are no programs that feature full concerts of traditional Latin music performed artistically by a professional orchestra.
“There is a need in our community for being able to listen to and enjoy genuine music from Latin America,” he said. “The good news is that philharmonic is ready to perform, the music is set and already in folders, and the energetic conductor is eager to put in action his baton.”
The Latin Phil plans to offer three concerts in 2013, beginning with a premiere performance, “Mother’s Day Serenate,” at 4 p.m. on May 12 in the prestigious Cullen Theater in the Wortham Center. Tickets are $20 for general audience and $10 for students.
“Besides all the happy and emotive music that will be performed in Cullen, we will also have surprises for our special guests, our mothers,” Garrido said. “This concert is a sincere tribute to the most noble human being on earth. For that reason, I promise that we will present a concert that will, no doubt, bring pride, passion, memories and full enjoyment to our audience.”
The Latin Phil is a non-profit organization governed by a board of directors, presided by Dr. Dorothy Caram. The treasurer is UST’s Dr. Ulyses Balderas, economist and director of study abroad at St. Thomas. Upcoming concerts will also be held in The Woodlands, Sugar Land, Cypress and Katy, Texas.
Garrido, who is originally from Maracaibo, Venezuela, wrote his dissertation on Latin American music and musicians. He promotes Latin American music around the world and recently conducted the Orquesta di Fiati in Milan, Italy, in the historic Sinfonica de Sevilla, the National Youth Orchestra of Argentina and the Costa Rica Philharmonic.
Garrido, a family man who said there is no better satisfaction than being able to see his children grow up and educate them to become useful citizens, said his work with St. Thomas is his highest academic achievement and his new position with the Latin Phil is his greatest professional accolade.
Photo Credit: Connie Vega-Saldaña