RCE Announces 2014-15 Season

In celebration of the orchestra's third season, the ensemble returns to the fundamentals of chamber music, reflected in new programming, community engagement programs, and the launch of the orchestra's inaugural international tour to China and Taiwan in January 2015. 

RCE Announces 2014-15 Season of Orchestral Performances and Chamber Music Concerts

The River Charles Ensemble (RCE) announces its roster of orchestral performances and chamber music concerts for the 2014-15 season with several new additions to the orchestra's programs. In an exciting venture on the international stage, the orchestra will be traveling to the People's Republic of China (中华人民共和国) and the Republic of China, Taiwan (中華民國)to perform in world-class concert halls and engage local audiences and students, musicians and non-musicians alike, in a cultural exchange and conversation about the importance of cultural citizenship, collaborative leadership, and versatile fundamentals of chamber music. Furthermore, the orchestra's concert season expands to celebrate its long-standing partnership with the Harvard College Piano Society, featuring five formal performances during the new season. A new collaboration with student composer Sam Wu will usher in a new era of contemporary music projects by the orchestra. RCE is proud to host the first ever piano competition at Harvard, the RCE-HCPS Tour2015 Piano Competition, from October 19-26, 2014. More information about the competition can be found on this website. Additionally, the orchestra and its musicians will be making debuts in new performance spaces. In a new agreement with the administrators of the Harvard Music Department and the directors of other Harvard orchestra organizations, RCE will begin a trial program to become a new resident student orchestra of the Harvard Music Department.

The orchestra's first official concert of the season is on November 15, 2014 at 8pm in Lowell Lecture Hall, in honor of the orchestra's official establishment and university recognition two years prior on November 15, 2012. The program opens with the Adagietto from Mahler's Symphony No.5, followed by the Mozart Piano Concerto No.17, K453, featuring the winner of the Tour2015 Piano Competition. Mr. Sam Wu has been commissioned to write an orchestral suite for RCE, which will be premiered on the program. The concert concludes with performances of short, popular Chinese folk and contemporary songs, including but not limited to Jasmine Flower (茉莉花), Yearning the Spring Breeze (望春風), and You and Me (我和你). The majority of the repertoire on this concert will be featured on the orchestra's Tour2015 journey to Asia in the winter, excluding the Mahler Adagietto.

The second orchestral concert of the season is on November 21, 2014 at 7:00pm in the Sanctuary Hall of Memorial Church in Harvard Yard, marking the orchestra's return to its first formal home. The event will feature a shorter program, in consideration of the 131st Harvard-Yale Football to be played in Harvard Stadium on November 22, 2014. With a focus solely on the orchestra, the concert includes two movements of incidental music from Schubert's Rosamunde and Beethoven Symphony No.4. Audience members are invited to meet RCE musicians at the reception following the performance.

Orchestral concerts by RCE remain on hold as the orchestra tours Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei, and Beijing from January 12-24, 2015. RCE musicians return to the third orchestral concert in April 2015 (date and venue to be announced in December 2014), featuring an all-American concert and collaborations with musicians of the Harvard Wind Ensemble, The Harvard Undergraduate Drummers (THUD), and other prominent student musicians at Harvard and institutions around Boston. The program includes: Copland Fanfare for the Common Man, Barber Adagio for Strings, Sondheim Send in the Clowns, the second movement from Ives Symphony No.1, John William's Theme from the film score to Born on the Fourth of July, and Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue (featured pianist to remain undisclosed). 

RCE will participate in Harvard University's annual ArtsFirst Festival, hosted by the Harvard Office for the Arts. Programming will feature highlights from the 2014-15 season performances, and may include diverse works for orchestra, chamber ensemble, and solo individuals.

In partnership with the Harvard College Piano Society, RCE will accompany the competitors of the Tour2015 Piano Competition during the final round. All competitors prepare the entire Mozart Piano Concerto No.17, K453 for the first round. Three or four finalists will be selected to advance to the final round, during which they will play the first movement of the same concerto with orchestra. The performances of the final round are open to the public, free of charge, on October 26, 2014 at 2pm in Paine Hall of the Harvard Music Department. The competition final round ends with preview performances of Chinese songs to be featured on the November 15 program in Lowell Lecture Hall. The winner of the Tour2015 Piano Competition will be announced at the conclusion of the event in Paine Hall.

RCE musicians are active chamber musicians and pursue various solo and chamber music opportunities throughout the year. The Harvard Music Department welcomes the arrival of the Parker Quartet, the new recipient of the university's Blodgett Quartet-in-Residence. Members of the Parker Quartet will teach the MUSIC 189r chamber music course, involving intensive weekly coachings to student-formed chamber groups. Final performances of the chamber repertoire studied will be featured in several concerts in Paine Hall of the Harvard Music Department during the first week of December 2014 and the last week of April/first week of May 2015. 

The RCE Board of Student Trustees includes active leaders who are working to expand accessibility of musical performances to the general public in various suburbs around Boston. Harvard University's venue resources provide a central hub for music-lovers within Boston's richly cultured and historic music scene, featuring the beloved Sanders Theatre, Memorial Church Sanctuary Hall, Lowell Lecture Hall, and Paine Hall within walking distances of each other. In September 2014, RCE will announce the specifics of development and engagement programs with local primary and secondary schools, encompassing a larger and more general population of citizens within the organization's long-term visions. The concept of cultural citizenship is an evolving theme of societal responsibility and artistic engagement, and central to any programs of public engagement.

Updates to the season roster of programming will be made regularly.

For inquiries regarding the River Charles Ensemble's annual functions, please send a message to rce@hcs.harvard.edu.

For inquiries regarding the River Charles Ensemble's Tour2015 Project and Fundraising Campaign, please send a message to rcetour@hcs.harvard.edu.