The Phoenix Symphony former resident conductor Robert Moody returned to the Valley on Saturday to conduct the symphony to an inspiring and entertaining performance.
Moody, along with being artistic director for Arizona Musicfest, is also the music director for the Winston-Salem Symphony in North Carolina and the Portland Symphony Orchestra in Maine.
The symphony began with a piece titled “Desert Transport.” Inspired by a helicopter tour overlooking the many landscapes of Arizona, Moody and Mason Bates created an epic story of sound of the history of the native Pima Indians.
Moody and Bates were inspired by the Tonto Ruins located near Payson and wanted to create a classical piece that would describe the spirit of the people.
Moody conducted the men and women of the Phoenix Symphony in the exciting accelerating tempo of “Desert Transport,” instilling an image of the beautiful desert landscape of Arizona and transporting the audience to the desert through sound.
The second performance was a celebration of Sergei Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major, Op. 26.
Moody’s final performance of the night gave tribute to the interpretive and nationalistic Symphony No. 2 of Jean Sibelius. Moody conducted the four movements of the symphony with a thrilling performance ending that had the audience on their feet and echoing “bravos” throughout the theater.
The returning performance from Robert Moody sent the audience on a journey of emotions through the gentle sounds from the oboe and sudden intense percussion. The symphony’s rapport with the audience created a dynamic atmosphere in the theater, and the audience was more than willing to venture along.