Orchestra Alumni invited to play with the CSU symphony to celebrate Maestro Kenney’s retirement

Dear CSU Symphony, Sinfonia and Opera Orchestra alumni,

It is my hope that you have continued to use the skills learned through the repertoire and ensemble playing you experienced at CSU. When I began my tenure at CSU’s School of Music, Theater, and Dance twenty years ago, it was my hope that we could build a program that would compete with other schools in Colorado, provide memorable performances, and train students to a level that continuing their playing careers was a natural extension of what they had acquired during their time at CSU.

This program has reached heights many thought would not be possible at our school. From Mahler symphonies to Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, from Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances to Bolcom’s Commedia, from Beethoven to Brahms, we have seen students taking on and meeting the challenges of professional level large ensemble repertoire (see the list to the right of this page).

With that said, this letter serves as the announcement of my retirement from CSU next May. For this season, I have programmed pieces that again will take the orchestras to new realms and challenge all who are members. The repertoire will include some standard pieces such as the iconic Beethoven Symphony No. 5, played alongside less well known, but equally important pieces such as Florence Price’s Symphony No. 3. At the end of Nov., the University Symphony Orchestra will perform the complete Planets by Gustav Holst (including Pluto by Collin Matthews), and Sun Dagger, a world premiere by our own composition professor James David. Look for excerpts of this program at our performance at CMEA next Jan.

The Sinfonia will also mix traditional with the new. Michelle Stanley, and our new harp professor, Kathryn Harms, will perform the Mozart Flute and Harp Concerto, alongside the rarely played Saint-Saens Symphony in A major. An overture by Louise Farrenc, a contemporary of Beethoven, rounds out the fall program. The spring semester will feature our annual concerto competition and Haydn’s “Farewell” symphony. The orchestra will then head into the pit for a production of Copland’s Tenderland, with full orchestra.

The year will end with another first for CSU: Mahler’s heartfelt Symphony No. 3. We will begin rehearsals for this work in Dec., start the semester with more detailed session, then return to it after the opera production at the beginning of April. Those performances will take place on May 4 and 5, 2023 in Griffin Concert Hall. At the very least, I would like to invite you to attend these performances; however, even better would be for you to join the ensemble in performance for this celebration of the past 20 years of the CSU Symphony.

Below is our rehearsal schedule for April. To RSVP, please fill out the following form. Parts will be available online by Nov. 1, 2022.

Please come celebrate with the University Symphony Orchestra. Tt would be great to see you at CSU once again!

Wes Kenney
Professor of Music
School of Music, Theatre, and Dance
Colorado State University


Selected Repertoire Performed by CSU Orchestras 2003-2023

  • Adams Short Ride in a Fast Machine, Chairman Dances: Foxtrot for Orchestra
  • Abels Dance for Martin’s Dream, Outburst
  • Bach/Webern Ricercare from the Musical Offering
  • Bates Mothership
  • Bartok Concerto for Orchestra, Viola Concerto, Divertimento
  • Beethoven Symphonies 1-9, Leonore No. 3, Egmont Incidental Music, Coriolan Overture
  • Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique, Harold in Italy, Roman Carnival Overture
  • Bernstein Symphonic Dances from West Side Story, Serenade (2x), Three Dances from On The Town
  • Bizet L’Arlésienne Suite No. 1.
  • Bolcom Commedia
  • Brahms Symphonies Nos. 1-4, Academic Festival and Tragic Overtures
  • Britten Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge
  • Bruckner Symphony No. 5
  • Coleridge Taylor Danse Negre, Novelleten No. 1
  • Copland Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, Clarinet Concerto
  • Michael Daugherty Ghost Ranch, Route 66
  • James David 3 World Premiers: Lescaux, The Brightness Within Me, Sun Dagger
  • Debussy Prelude to an Afternoon of a Faun
  • Dvorak Symphony No. 5, 6, 8. 9
  • Elgar Enigma Variations, Cello Concerto
  • Francaix The Flower Clock
  • Lena Frank Manchay Tiempo
  • Gershwin An American in Paris
  • Glass Phaedra
  • Gottschalk Grande Tarantelle
  • Grieg Symphonic Dances
  • Handel Water Music (Complete), Organ Concerto in Bb
  • Haydn Symphonies No. 22, 99. Creation, Trumpet Concerto
  • Higdon Fanfare Ritmico
  • Hindemith Cello Concerto, Trauermusik
  • Hummel Trumpet Concerto
  • Ibert Divertissement
  • Ives The Unanswered Question
  • Kay Six Dances for String Orchestra
  • Korngold Much Ado About Nothing Suite
  • Libby Larsen Parachute Dancing
  • Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1, Les Preludes
  • Luthier Oddbird Concerto
  • Marquez Danzon No. 2
  • Mahler Symphonies 1,3,5,7
  • McTee Einstein’s Dream
  • Milhaud Suite Provençale
  • Mozart Symphonies 29, 34, 38, 40, 41, Requiem, Mass in C Major
  • Mussorgsky/Ravel Pictures at an Exhibition
  • Nielsen Flute Concerto
  • Orff Carmina Burana
  • Pärt These Words
  • Penderecki Anaklasis
  • Perkinson Grass
  • Poulenc Gloria, Organ Concerto
  • Previn Every Good Boy Deserves Favor
  • Prokofiev Symphony No. 5, Alexander Nevsky Cantata, Piano Concerto No. 1
  • Rachmaninoff Variations on a theme of Paganini
  • Ravel Bolero, Rapsodie Espagnole, Daphnis and Chloe Suite No. 2
  • Respighi Trittico Bottecilliano, Pines of Rome
  • Revueltas Night of the Mayas
  • Rheinberger Organ Concerto No. 1
  • Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherazade, Russian Easter Overture
  • Rouse Flute Concerto
  • Roussel Symphony No. 2
  • Ruggles Men And Mountains
  • Russell Concerto for Clarinet and Cello
  • Saint-Saens Organ Symphony, 2nd Piano Concerto
  • Schiff Canti di Davide
  • Schwantner Percussion Concerto
  • Shchedrin Carmen Suite
  • Shostakovich Symphonies No. 1, 5
  • Sibelius Symphonies No. 1 and 2
  • Still Serenade
  • Sowande African Suite
  • Strauss Death and Transfiguration, Till Eulenspiel, Four Last Songs
  • Stravinsky Rite of Spring, Dumbarton Oaks, Pulcinella, Firebird Suite, Danses Concertante
  • Takemitsu  Tree Line
  • Tan Dun Orchestral Theater I
  • Tchaikovsky Symphonies No. 2-6, Capriccio Italien
  • Vaughan Williams Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings, Sea Symphony, Fantasia on a theme by Thomas Tallis
  • Xian Xinghai Yellow River Cantata


  • Bizet Carmen
  • Britten Albert Herring, Rape of Lucretia, Turn of the Screw
  • Cimarosa The Secret Marriage
  • Gluck Orfeo
  • Handel Xerses, Dido and Aeneas
  • Holst The Wandering Scholar
  • Humperdinck Hansel and Gretel
  • Lehar The Merry Widow (2x)
  • Massenet Cendrillon
  • Mozart Cosi fan Tutte (2x), Marriage of Figaro, (3x), Magic Flute (2x), Idomeneo
  • Puccini Il Trittico: Gianni Schicchi, Suor Angelica
  • Rossini Cenerentola
  • Sondheim A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd
  • Strauss, Jr. Die Fledermaus (2x)
  • Sullivan The Gondoliers, Patience, Pirates of the Penzance
  • Vaughan Williams Riders to the Sea
  • Verdi, Aida, Falstaff