The Southeastern Symphony Orchestra of SELU was founded in 1993 by Dr. Yakov Voldman, Director of Orchestral Studies. The orchestra performs annually in its own concert series and participates in Southeastern Louisiana University’s Fanfare Festival, an event that takes place at the historic Columbia Theatre in Hammond, Louisiana, drawing performers and audiences from throughout the world.
The orchestra has presented world-famous soloists and chamber ensembles such as Illya Kaller, Yuri Zhislin, the Moscow Piano Trio, Nora Romanoff-Schwarzberg, Georgy Valchev, Madison Day, and Washington Garcia, to name a few. Department of Music and Performing Arts faculty members are also featured as soloists, allowing students to hear their mentors in a professional performance environment.
Outstanding students have a chance to present their concertos with the orchestra, which has become a solid platform to help young soloists launch their performing careers. Young composers trained at Southeastern have the opportunity to premiere their pieces with the orchestra every year, and use the ensemble as a learning tool to experiment and test their compositions.
The orchestra also offers a unique educational opportunity to advanced students of the Southeastern Community Music School, a pre-college program based in Southeastern’s facilities, by allowing them to integrate with the orchestra or play as soloists. This special project allows many young talented students from the area to develop their music studies from an early age, while being supervised by world-class faculty members.
The orchestral program seeks diversity in all respects, and includes standard repertoire from the great masters of the past as well as new music of our days. The group also programs pops, family, and pedagogical concerts, and collaborates regularly with the Southeastern opera, choral ensembles, ballet, and theater.
In order to give the students a wide perspective of the orchestral palette, the ensemble covers all different settings, from string orchestra to chamber and full symphony orchestra.
Spanish conductor and violinist Dr. Victor Correa-Cruz, has become its Artistic Director since Fall 2017. At his debut concert, he presented “An Evening in Vienna”, featuring music by Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven. Maestro Correa-Cruz wishes to get lasting inspiration from these Viennese masters and have them as a constant reference for the orchestra’s learning and growing process.
Selections from Southeastern Symphony’s “Evening in Vienna”: