André Raphel André Raphel

"The music's rhythm had an irresistible momentum."

The Washington Post



December Notes: 2018

The holidays offer a few moments to reflect on a remarkable year! The year began with my favorite football team the Philadelphia Eagles winning the Super Bowl. (No such magic appears in store for 2019!)

The following week, it was a pleasure to work with Jeans n' Classics for probably the 10th time. The program was, The Music of Billy Joel and Elton John. Of course it included Elton's hit song, "Philadelphia Freedom."

A weeklong East Meets West Festival offered a first collaboration with the wonderful violinist, Jennifer Frautschi. What a thrill conducting Tan Dun's Symphonic Poem of Three Notes, a brilliant work! Elgar's Enigma Variations is always a joy to revisit, and I enjoyed conducting it. Also great to collaborate with Zuill Bailey on the same program, which included Haydn's Cello Concerto in D with the Mobile Symphony Orchestra (AL).

Other highlights included a return to The Mann Center conducting the Philadelphia Orchestra, and a successful encounter with STAR WARS: A New Hope film with live orchestra in San Antonio. The audiences loved those performances!

There's more to come in the New Year! Warmest wishes for the happiest of holidays and see you in 2019! AR


Classical Roots in Detroit

André will appear with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in 2019. "Classical Roots" is to feature works by George Walker and William Grant Still among others. The concerts mark a return to Detroit for André, who first appeared with the orchestra in 2012.

The Classical Roots Gala concert program will be part of a DSO Live Webcast! Stay tuned for further details.

Inspired by Song: Brahms and Mendelssohn

On November 29th, André leads the Temple University Concert Orchestra in a program based on song. "From Spirituals to Hymns" features works by Adolphus Hailstork, Brahms and Mendelssohn. The concert at TPAC in Philadelphia begins at 7:30 pm.

Hailstork: Three Spirituals for Orchestra
Brahms: Variations on a Theme by Joseph Haydn
Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 5 (Reformation)


Star Wars: A New Hope in Concert

André led the San Antonio Symphony in performances of Star Wars live film with orchestra. Star Wars: A New Hope in Concert featured the original 1977 film shown as the orchestra played John Williams' iconic film score.

Read the review from the San Antonio Express-News at the link: Star Wars A New Hope


Catto Recording Project

Jazz pianist and composer Uri Caine and André Raphel teamed up to record Caine's Passion of Octavius Catto in NYC. The work focuses on Catto, a pioneering figure in American history who lived in the 1800's. Octavius Catto was an educator, civil and voting rights activist, as well as a baseball player in the early Negro League.

Caine's piece is an oratorio combining classical, pop, gospel, jazz and patriotic styles to create a powerful work. Pictured below following the recording sessions: André, Barbara Walker, vocalist, Uri Caine, composer and pianist and Joyce Hammann, Concertmaster. Here's the link to an article about the sessions from Jazz Blues News.Space. Scroll to the article: Scene of the Unheard Uri Caine

André Raphel with Barbara Walker, Uri Caine and Joyce


A Night of Gershwin

André Raphel will return to the Mann Center to conduct The Philadelphia Orchestra in an All-Gershwin program on July 27. The concert will be the closing concert of the Philadelphia Orchestra's Mann Center residency.

A Night of Gershwin features Cuban Overture and Concerto in F with Micah McLaurin, piano.

Gershwin: Cuban Overture
Gershwin: Concerto in F
Gershwin/arr. Bennett: Porgy and Bess, A Symphonic Picture
Gershwin: An American in Paris


Raphel Named Conductor Laureate

In news recently announced, André Raphel has been named Conductor Laureate of the Wheeling Symphony. The appointment beginning with the 18/19 season recognizes Raphel's distinguished fifteen year tenure as Music Director.

Read more about the announcement at the link in this article from Broadway World conductorlaureate


East Meets West Festival- Tan Dun & Rimsky-Korsakov

André leads an "East Meets West" Festival week with the Wheeling Symphony March 14-16. The Festival begins with a presentation focusing on The Art and Tradition of Storytelling. The March 14 event will feature Marc Harshman, West Virginia Poet Laureate, Wei-Wei, WSO Associate Concertmaster and André Raphel. On March 15, a panel discussion focusing on Chinese cultural traditions and Beethoven's music. Lu-Han Li, pipa will appear as well as Jennifer Frautschi, violin.

On the March 16 concert, André conducts works by Tan Dun, Beethoven and Rimsky-Korsakov.

Tan Dun: Symphonic Poem of 3 Notes
Beethoven: Violin Concerto
Jennifer Frautschi, violin
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade


Two of a Kind in Mobile

On February 24 and 25, André Raphel conducts the Mobile Symphony Orchestra (AL) in "Two of a Kind." The program features works by Elgar and Haydn.

Zuill Bailey will be featured as soloist playing the Haydn: Cello Concerto No. 2 in D Major. The concerts open with Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet Excerpts.

Prokofiev: Romeo and Juliet Excerpts
Haydn: Cello Concerto No. 2 in D Major
Zuill, Bailey, cello
Elgar: Enigma Variations

Collaborating with Zuill Bailey


A debut in Buffalo

André Raphel appeared with the Buffalo Philharmonic making his debut in concerts on December 2 and 3, 2017. Critical acclaim followed for the performances.

The Buffalo News wrote: "He and the orchestra treated that Ravel with panache and technical precision. The dance rhythms sparkled and every note was right where it should be." Here's a link to the complete review:

Pops with Blockbuster Broadway

André conducts the Wheeling Symphony on September 21 in the 2017/18 Opening Night Pops concert. The concert features Blockbuster Broadway with vocalists Kelli Rabke, Scott Coulter, Jessica Hendy and John Boswell, piano.

The program includes songs from Broadway's greatest shows including: CHICAGO, ANNIE, THE LION KING, WICKED, LES MISERABLES, JERSEY BOYS, CABARET, MAMMA MIA!, BEAUTIFUL, PIPPIN and THE SOUND OF MUSIC.

André Raphel with Blockbuster Broadway.


Review from Bachtrack for French Festival program

André led a French Festival program with the Wheeling Symphony which included works by Chabrier, Fauré and Berlioz. Also featured Kenneth Fuchs' new Piano Concerto "Spiritualist".

Of Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique, the Bachtrack review noted "the music was terrifically exciting even as Raphel exerted perfect control over the proceedings." Read the complete review at the following link:


André featured on commemorative CD with The Philadelphia Orchestra
Honoring the Dream
William Grant Still (1895-1978)
from Symphony No. 1 ("Afro-American):

I. Moderato assai
IV. Lento, con risoluzione

André Raphel Conductor


View a PDF of Festivals & World Premieres featuring André Raphel