Houston symphony hires 1st Hispanic music director

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Associated Press

Posted on January 16, 2013 at 4:32 PM

HOUSTON (AP) — The Houston Symphony has named a Colombian-born, Austrian-trained music director, marking the first time the orchestra will be led by a Hispanic.

The symphony announced Wednesday the appointment of 35-year-old Andres Orozco-Estrada, who debuted with the Vienna Philharmonic in 2010.

The appointment ends a three-year search to fill a post that will be vacated in May when Hans Graf leaves after acting as music director for 12 years.

Symphony Board President Robert Peiser says Orozco-Estrada is a "rising conducting superstar."

The announcement comes as the symphony celebrates its centennial. Orozco-Estrada first worked with the symphony in October, and was immediately asked to return to further test the relationship. His five-year contract will officially begin in 2014, but he will begin working with the symphony during the upcoming performance season.

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