GALLIPOLIS —The Ariel-Ann Carson Dater Performing Arts Centre has announced its “Maestro for a Moment” competition has returned featuring Gallia Prosecutor Jason Holdren, Holzer Health System’s Dr. Arthur Huntley and Pleasant Valley Hospital’s Dr. Randall Hawkins vying for a chance to conduct the Ohio Valley Symphony, this Saturday, Dec. 7, during the symphony’s annual Christmas Show, starting at 7:30 p.m.
“Maestro for a Moment” is the annual campaign of The Ohio Valley Symphony, resident orchestra of the Ariel-Ann Carson Dater Performing Arts Centre, to promote awareness of symphonic music and raise funds to support live OVS performances on the historic Ariel Opera House stage.
With an emphasis on the “fun” part of fundraising, three candidates from the community are selected to go and solicit money any way they see fit. From the sublime to the ridiculous (costumes and props are encouraged but not required), “Maestro for a Moment” candidates have ridden bikes, hiked trails, conducted the cattle in the pasture and collected the support of their friends and colleagues to keep live professional music on the Ariel-Dater Hall stage.
A major part of “Maestro for a Moment” campaigns in the past have relied on letter writing, but in recent years Maestro hopefuls have turned to social media to boost their reach. The Ariel webpage arieltheatre.org puts the candidates front and center with easy “Paypal Donate Now” buttons to make tax deductible donations quick and easy.
In preparation for the event, candidates are issued their own batons and also receive a private conducting lesson from the OVS conductor, Maestro Steven Huang.
Candidates are allowed to raise funds right up through intermission of the concert, with the results tallied during the second half of the concert. The winner is announced at the end of the concert. The prize? The candidate bringing in the highest tally gets the honor of conducting Leroy Anderson’s beloved “Sleigh Ride” at The Ohio Valley Symphony’s annual Christmas Show this Saturday. Vote early and vote often by sending checks to OVS at P.O. Box 424 Gallipolis, Ohio or go to the website at arieltheatre.org and cast your monetary vote online via Paypal. This annual fundraiser helps keep live music available for the region.
Locally-based Holzer Health System is the long time sponsor of the evening’s festivities.
The evening begins with a pre-concert chat at 6:45 p.m. led by Huang. His casual style of presenting the background of the music played is entertaining, informative and fun.
Traditional music such as Slavic Christmas Music and the La Nuit de Noel will transition into more popular tunes such as Charlie Brown Christmas, Santa Claus Suite and Dolly Parton’s Hard Candy Christmas, in a special arrangement for the OVS by Maestro Huang.
Join for a post concert reception to meet the musicians, have some punch and some seasonal treats.
The OVS has a mission of bringing great music played by great artists to the Ohio Valley – and making orchestral music easy to love. To get a unique perspective on making music, the public is welcome to attend OVS rehearsals for free at 7-10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, and 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7. Open rehearsals are a great way for young and old alike to become more familiar with symphonic music, and they offer a behind-the-scenes glimpse of what goes into preparing an orchestral performance.
Tickets for The Ohio Valley Symphony’s concerts are $24 for adults, $22 seniors and $12 for students. The price includes the pre-concert chat, the concert and the reception immediately following. Tickets are available on the website at ohiovalleysymphony.org or at the box office.
Funding for The Ohio Valley Symphony is provided in part by Holzer Health Systems, the Ann Carson Dater Endowment and you, the public. The Ariel is located at 426 Second Ave. in downtown Gallipolis, Ohio and is an ADA accessible facility