Music Director and Conductor Peter Dabrowski ignited two symphonies into fiery classical music for the fourth and most impressive time.

They call it the POPS Symphony Extravaganza. Once again it was the South Texas Youth Symphony that ended with a prolonged standing ovation.

The Valley Symphony set the stage for double performances that attracted 3,000 Lower Rio Grande music students earlier in the day. The public performance pushed the Extravagnza total close to 5,000 in attendance.

“I am proud that the Valley has two splendid orchestras, the Valley Symphony and the Youth Symphony,” Dabrowski said after the smoothest performances this double event has produced, the past four years.

“The role of the Valley Symphony is to foster musical development and mentor younger musicians,” he added. “The Youth Symphony is to create younger musicians from their orchestra in hope that some day they will join them in the Valley Symphony.”

The Masetro added, “I was very happy with both concerts. The audiences and their response truly expressed their feeling of pride. We have a fabulous Symphony!”

“Our next symphony is coming up with the Orchestra and Chorale on Feb. 19 at the University of Texas-Pan American in Edinburg,” he continued. “Our Chorale is excellent and all Valley music-lovers will want to see the next concert. It will feature the music of Ruter, Vivaldi and Bruckner.”

The Valley Symphony on Jan. 23 highlighted Spanish with “Mexico in La Piel” (assisted by the University of Texas-Pan American Mariachi) then by Spain with Rimski-Korsakov’s “Caprice Espanol.”

The youths sparkled with Bizet’s famed Carmen Suite. They earned high applause mastering the most popular of opera music, familiar to all and excellently performed.

The Carmen Suites 1 and 2 were followed by Hungarian March, then Leroy Anderson Favorites by one of three American composers on the program.

This annual event attracted hundreds of members of the Symphony (this was not part of the six-event concerts by the Valley Symphony alone). Winter Texans and Valley music-lovers filled a majority of McAllen Civic Center auditorium.

Each year the Youth Symphony grows perceptibly closer to professional. Youth Symphony members, 50 strong, came close to the 69 members of the Valley Symphony and treated every note and instrument with poise.

The old favorite classics delighted this audience, which was chiefly older, except for the justly proud parents of the students. The youth range from grade school to college, but most are high school age. They concentrated, dressed and performed like young pros. All true lovers of classical music should plan to see what these youth achieve next.