San Juan Symphony season continues with ‘From the New World’ in Farmington and Durango


    Special to The PREVIEW
    The San Juan Symphony American Visions season continues with “From the New World” featuring San Juan Symphony principal flute Rochelle Mann as soloist.
    Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 4 at Henderson Performance Hall in Farmington, N.M., and 3 p.m. on Nov. 5 at the Community Concert Hall in Durango under the baton of Music Director Thomas Heuser.
    Czech composer Antonín Dvorák views America through the lens of the 19th century and creates a vivid Symphony “From the New World,” complete with soulful melodies and rugged rhythms. Following a thrilling orchestral overture from the comic opera “Die Fledermaus,” Mann will deliver a lyrical “Serenade” by American composer Howard Hanson. Then local student musicians will join the San Juan Symphony in a side-by-side performance of “The Moldau,” raging over rapids and thundering through Bedrich Smetana’s monumental symphonic poem.
    Mann is currently professor emerita at Fort Lewis College in Durango. She has been principal flute with the San Juan Symphony since 1985, and also performs regularly with the Music in the Mountains Festival Orchestra and Third Avenue Arts. Her solo and chamber concerts have taken her throughout the United States, Russia, Poland, Estonia, Austria and France.
    Named FLC’s Featured Scholar in 2003, Mann served as department chair for eight of her 24 years as a professor in the Department of Music, and most recently as acting dean of the School of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. In 2010, she was named one of Durango’s Sweetheart of the Arts.
    Mann began her artistic studies in ballet at age 5, and started playing the flute when she was 10. She earned both BME and MS degrees at Indiana University, where she was able to continue her dance studies while majoring in music education.
    She began teaching elementary music in Seymour, Ind., and after relocating to the southwest, taught K-6 music, choir and band on the Navajo reservation. She earned her DMA in flute performance at Arizona State University and, although her career eventually took a turn toward higher education, she continued to work with young students as conductor of the Durango Children’s Chorale.
    She also served as a program author and clinician for a music series. Her other publications include works for children’s voices as well as articles promoting innovative teaching techniques and performance practice.
    Heuser will preview the concert on Wednesday, Nov. 1, at 6 p.m. at the Durango Arts Center. He will also give a free preconcert talk at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 4 at Henderson Hall in Farmington before the evening symphony performance.
    For Durango tickets, please call 247-7657, purchase online at or visit the Community Concert Hall ticket office in the Welcome Center at 8th Street and Main Avenue in Durango. For Farmington tickets, please call (505)566-3430. For more information, go to