Conductor Trond Saeverud leads the Galveston Symphony Orchestra through a rehearsal, Sept. 22, 2013.

JENNIFER REYNOLDS/The Daily News file photos

GALVESTON — The Galveston Symphony Orchestra’s final performance of the season should be an exciting one.

The orchestra is wrapping up its 2013-2014 season, its first under Conductor Trond Saeverud, 4 p.m. May 4 with a concert at The Grand 1984 Opera House, 2020 Postoffice St.

Both Saeverud and Sparky Koerner, a longtime board member and trumpet player with the orchestra, said the first season with Saeverud at the helm has been a successful one. Saeverud was hired in August.

For Saeverud, a live classical music performance should have a rawness that’s lost on radio with a mix of loud and soft, gentle and then suddenly a very aggressive expressions.

“All of those transitions are very challenging in a live performance and could either make someone interested who’s never heard it before or could be too much,” the Norwegian conductor said. “The message is: Come to a classical concert if you want the challenge but if you don’t feel up to it don’t do it.”

Saeverud said he has tried to create as much excitement as possible in what he said has been a successful first year at the helm of Galveston’s orchestra.

Koerner said Saeverud stood out above all the other applicants for the position and has been a success in his first season on the island.

“It’s just really been a delight to work with him,” Koerner said.

Ticket sales were up this past season with at least one concert with more than 400 people in attendance, he said. Koerner said he also expected subscribers will increase in the coming season.

Saeverud’s accessibility and connection with the audience as well as education outreach have likely helped drive the increased attendance, Koerner said.

On May 4 along with conducting, Saeverud, who grew up in a family of artists, will also be joining the rest of the 50 to 60 musicians in the orchestra to play violin in one of the pieces the group will play that night.

The orchestra will play Johan Svendsen’s Romanza for violin and orchestra, Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite, the 1919 version, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.5.

Contact reporter Christopher Smith Gonzalez at 409-683-5314 or

At a glance

WHAT: The Galveston Symphony Orchestra’s final performance of the 2013-2014 season

WHEN: 4 p.m. May 4

WHERE: The Grand 1984 Opera House, 2020 Post Office.

TICKETS: The Grand 1894 Opera House box office. Box office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.,

Monday to Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. By phone at 765-1894 or

(800) 821-1894. Online at

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