ASHLAND — The Ashland Symphony Orchestra will open its 52nd season with a “Welcome Back!” concert on Saturday, Sept. 18, at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. at the Robert M. and Janet L. Archer Auditorium.

The ASO is auditioning five candidates for the position of Music Director/Conductor.

Each will program and conduct a concert during the 2021-2022 season.

First on the podium is Darwin Aquino. He has selected Beethoven’s Fidelio Overture, Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto No.1 featuring soloist David Halen, and El amor brujo by Manuel de Falla. In addition, Aquino has composed an original work entitled Lunga Pandemia which will have its world premiere with the ASO. This program is presented without intermission.

Darwin Aquino

Dominican conductor and composer, Darwin Aquino appears internationally and is regarded as among the most accomplished Latin American artists of his generation, in both symphonic and operatic fields. For the 2020-21 season, Darwin has been appointed as the new Music Director of the St. Louis Philharmonic Orchestra. He serves as Music Director for the Música Sacra concert series in Santo Domingo, Music Director of the Gateway Festival Orchestra, Conductor-in-Residence for the Washington University Symphony Orchestra and Director of Orchestral Studies at the University of Missouri St. Louis.

Concertmaster of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, David Halen is recognized as one of the most esteemed musical leaders of an American orchestra. Halen began playing the violin at the age of 6, and earned his bachelor’s degree at the age of 18 studying with his father, the late Walter Halen. In that same year, he won the Music Teachers National Association Competition and was granted a Fulbright scholarship for study at the Freiburg Hochschule für Musik in Germany, the youngest recipient ever to have been honored with this prestigious award.

In addition to the 3 and 7:30 p.m. in-person performances, this program will be available to stream on demand from Sept. 24 to Oct. 23.

Tickets for live and virtual concerts are $24 for adults, $21 for seniors, and $5 for children and students and may be purchased at the ASO office 419-289-5115 located at 331 College Ave, or on line at Season ticket packages are still available.

At this time, the ASO is asking all patrons to wear masks. Patrons may also request socially distanced seats at the time of purchase.

Thank you to season sponsor Samaritan Hospital Foundation; and program supporters Packaging Corporation of America, Ann K. Guthrie, and Ron and Carolyn Marenchin. Additional support provided in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts

Council (OAC). The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically.

The Life section is supported by Brethren Care Village in Ashland.

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