Music Director, Kris Chapman
Kris Chapman currently serves as Director of Bands and Lead Faculty at Lone Star College-Montgomery where he conducts the Wind Ensemble and the Jazz Big Band in addition to teaching courses in Music Appreciation, Music Literature and Music Theory. Mr. Chapman also serves as Artistic Director/Conductor of the Kingwood Pops Orchestra and was recently named Music Director of the Houston Heights Orchestra. Mr. Chapman earned a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education (summa cum laude) in 2002 from Sterling College in Sterling, Kansas. As a senior, he had the fortunate opportunity to guest conduct the Sterling College Concert Chorale and Orchestra in selections from Handel's Messiah, including the "Hallelujah Chorus." After graduation, Mr. Chapman began his teaching career in the Kansas public school system as an elementary music teacher and band director. As Director of Bands at Larned High School, the Larned Band of Indians received superior ratings in marching and concert band festival performances. Mr. Chapman moved to Virginia to pursue a Master's Degree in Instrumental Conducting at George Mason University where he was a student of Anthony Maiello and Mark Camphouse. While at GMU, Mr. Chapman served as Assistant Conductor of the University Symphony and Chamber Orchestras.
Mr. Chapman has worked with Kenneth Kiesler at the Conductors’ Retreat at Medomak, Eugene Corporon and Dennis Fisher at the University of North Texas Conductor’s Collegium, and Neil Varon and the Rochester Philharmonic at the Eastman School of Music Summer Conducting Institute. In addition, he studied with the world-renowned conducting pedagogue Larry Rachleff at the International Conducting Workshop and Festival, where he had the privilege of conducting the Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic. Mr. Chapman was also selected as a Conducting Fellow to the 2010 Conducting Institute for Music Educators at the Julliard School in New York City.
Assistant Conductor, Michelle Perrin Blair
The newest doctoral student at the Moores School of Music, Michelle Perrin Blaire is a bright, young orchestral director. She recently graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a Master of Music in Conducting and since then has attended The Pierre Monteaux School, where she was named a 2012 Bernard Osher Scholar. She is currently pursuing her doctoral studies with Mr. Franz Anton Krager at the University of Houston, where she serves as the Assistant Conductor for the contemporary ensemble, AURA. In addition to conducting, Ms. Blair maintains a busy schedule as a violinist, both performing and teaching, and she holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Violin Performance from Southwestern University. Ms. Blair's career goals include becoming Director of Orchestras at a university, teaching young musicians at workshops and festivals, and partnering with local music teachers to enrich fine arts education in her community. Ms. Blair lives in Houston with her husband, Aaron.
Executive Director, Antonia Orozco Rogers
Antonia Orozco Rogers, principal flute, is excited to take on her new position as Chamber Music Coordinator with the Houston Heights Orchestra. Ms. Rogers’ experience with chamber music began at the young age of thirteen with the St. Matthew’s Catholic Church Folk Choir in El Paso, TX. She arranged music for a variety of instrument combinations that performed with the choir on Sundays as well as special masses. In high school, she formed the Coronado High School Flute Choir. The group was hired to perform for weddings, quinceañeras, school board luncheons, and philanthropic organizations, including a luncheon that featured guest speaker Laura Bush. During her undergraduate work at Texas Tech and graduate work at the University of Houston Moores School of Music, Ms. Rogers was a highly sought-after chamber musician. Her various chamber groups performed not only on student recitals, but also on large ensemble concerts. Highlights of her chamber repertoire include the Petite Symphony by Charles Gounod, Serenade for Winds by Richard Strauss, Serenade for Flute Violin and Viola by Ludwig van Beethoven, and Pastoral by Vincent Persichetti. Ms. Rogers is also a well-regarded orchestral player in the Houston freelance scene. She performs regularly with the Kinkaid School and Sugarland Baptist Church, having performed for several years with the top large ensembles at the Moores School of Music. Ms. Rogers holds a B.M. in flute performance from Texas Tech University, where she studied with Lisa Garner Santa, and an M.M. in flute performance from the University of Houston Moores School of Music, where she studied with Sydney Carlson and Jennifer Keeney.
Personnel Manager, Alejandro Hage
Alejandro Hage, raised in Colorado with his 10 siblings, has always had a love of music. He and his brothers and sisters learned to read music from his mother when he was in elementary school but he did not care for the piano. He started studying the trombone in 4th grade and played in the elementary school band. The next summer he picked up his sister's flute and taught himself to play it using a record player and book. He was still playing the trombone in the 5th grade band. Before starting Middle School the director told him he would not be able to play flute in the band as he would be far too far behind the other students. That made him even more determined to succeed on the flute and by the time school started in 6th grade he was a superior player to the other students who had been playing for two years already. He continued his studies throughout middle school and high school with teachers Linda Bloemendahl and Carol Beber. More often than not he was first chair. His excellent skills took him to new heights and he played with The Denver Young Artists Orchestra and Arvada Youth Symphony as principle piccolo. He has also performed at weddings, funerals and at Lord of the Mountains Lutheran Church. Alejandro studied at the University of Colorado with Mara Prestia for a year before switching his major to Psychology. He has played with the National Repertory Orchestra, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and the Aurora Symphony Orchestra. His work as a flight attendant left him little time to play the flute for many years. After a ten year sabbatical he has recently taken the flute up again, and is excited to be joining the Houston Heights Orchestra as both a player and personnel manager.
Composer-in-Residence, Richard Ford
Richard Ford (b. 1968, Washington D.C.) composes film, theatre, dance, and concert music. He earned a B.M. in Composition at the University of Oklahoma studying with Michael Hennagin. There he co-founded the Contemporary Chamber Players with conductor Christopher Neal, which premiered his first large-scale work "Bolts of Melody" based on the life and work of Emily Dickinson. Richard has performed professionally on saxophone, oboe, and as a singer in music theatre and choirs. After college Richard moved to New York City where he wrote the short musicals "A Lovely Leave" and "That Him", book and lyrics by Richard Mayora. They were produced as part of the Playwrights Horizons Winterfest on Theatre Row. He is an alumnus of the famed BMI Lehman Engel Music Theatre Workshop where he and collaborator Mark Wilder created the musicals "Venture Capital" and "With Eyes Open." His most recent musical, "Rites of Antigone," premiered in Indiana at the Bloomington Playwrights Project.
Richard has written two 'plays with music': "The Week That Georg and Viktor (and Princess Diana) Died" and "Waiting for the Sunrise", as well as incidental music for the plays "Two Bips, Two Booms," "Baltimore Waltz," "Traumaturgy," "Scrooge Variations," and others. His work for film ranges from the progressive rock-inspired score for the feature film "iCrime" to the short films "Trojan Horse," "Kith and Kin," "Kidnapped," and "The State of Things." He was a member of the avant-garde Alpha 60 Collective in Echo Park, California, where he produced, wrote, and/or directed nine short films. His most recent works explore his love for storytelling in less theatrical genres including "Halelegy" for Solo Piano, "We Must Be Bold" for Horn, Piano, Electronics and Tape, and his first string quartet "Sunday at 5." All three pieces will be premiered in Pavia, Italy this July as part of the Highscore Music Festival. He is currently working on a ballet, a work for Symphonic Band, and a commission for the Houston Heights Orchestra where he is the Composer in Residence.
Richard has studied composition with Dan Welcher at the Aspen Music Festival, David Diamond at Juilliard, Skip Kennon, and master arranger David Blumberg. Richard has also directed, produced, and worked on over 200 theatre and film productions. Most of these were world premieres at Playwrights Horizons in New York City, The Colony Theatre in Burbank, California, the Bloomington Playwrights Project where he was Artistic Director, Write Act Repertory Theatre, the Blue Angel Theatre, and the Century City Playhouse. He is an Honorary Member of the theatre company Vox Humana, recipient of various awards including the Fran Snygg Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts, and he is a member of ASCAP and the Dramatists Guild. Richard lives with his wife Donna and new son Thomas in Houston, Texas.