In Wednesday’s (11/25) San Jose Mercury News (California), Richard Scheinin writes, “Big-name orchestras import big-name soloists to drive ticket sales and add panache to their overall endeavors. Smaller, regional orchestras—at least the smart ones—take a different tack, emphasizing the best local and regional talent. Take Symphony Silicon Valley, which has a way of grooming homegrown talents, bringing them into the fold as soloists and conductors, and creating, in effect, a musical family situation that appeals to local audiences. Next weekend at the California Theatre in downtown San Jose, the orchestra will present two of its own members as soloists. They are Pamela Hakl, its longtime principal oboist, and violinist Christina Mok, its associate concertmaster. They are members of the family, in other words. … Hakl (who also was principal oboe of the old San Jose Symphony, from 1980 until its demise in 2002) will perform the Oboe Concerto No. 5 by Italian Baroque composer Tomaso Albinoni. … And it is for Vivaldi’s ‘The Four Seasons’—essentially a set of four violin concerti—that Mok will step forward as soloist, adding new dash, one hopes, to this perennial.” The program will be led by conductor Stephen Prutsman.

Posted November 25, 2009