The Houston Symphony’s New Ima Hogg Competition Residency

The Houston Symphony’s New Ima Hogg Competition Residency

Above: Joseph introduces the clarinet and performs Bartók melodies to support the classroom lesson as part of the Elementary Residency at Crespo presented by BBVA Compass.

Joseph coaches HSPVA student musicians to help them develop chamber music skills.

Many Houston Symphony fans will remember the astonishing performance of the Nielsen Clarinet Concerto that earned Joseph Morris the 2017 Ima Hogg Competition top prize, or the equally spectacular rendition he gave at the Donor and Subscriber Appreciation Concert this past July. Few, however, may realize that Joseph Morris’ work as the Ima Hogg prize winner extends beyond the concert stage to our city’s classrooms and community centers.

A new element of the Ima Hogg Competition, the Hazel French Robertson Education & Community Engagement Residency, was added this past year to help prizewinners build the skillsets of a 21st-century musician by engaging with the Greater Houston community.

“I am thrilled that we added this component to the Ima Hogg Competition,” said 2018 Ima Hogg Competition Chair Barbara McCelvey. “It supports the Houston community and gives our winners true-to-life experiences in this very difficult, yet meaningful, line of work. By the end of this residency, we hope the musicians walk away feeling confident about working with any age group or community setting to change lives through music.”

Joseph records a song made in partnership with a patient at Texas Children’s Hospital through Purple Songs Can Fly.

This past January, Joseph gained valuable experience doing just that, using his impressive musical talent to address the diverse needs of nearly 200 Houstonians, including cancer patients, underserved elementary school students, aspiring young musicians and men struggling with addiction.

“I admire his attitude about making music and his approach to sharing his passion for music,” reflected HSPVA clarinetist Jonathan Jalbert after a performance and chamber music masterclass with Joseph. “‘Listen louder than you play’ was a tip that stuck out to me.” It’s advice the Houston Symphony fully endorses as we continue to listen for new ways to enrich and inspire our community through music. —Allison Conlan, Director, Education

Late Honorable Peter Hoyt Brown and Family, Sponsor

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