Historic Rock Castle hosted the Nashville Symphony Orchestra on Wednesday evening, June 7, 2023. The appearance was part of a community concert series during which the symphony provided a series of free classical music performances at various venues across Middle Tennessee during the month of June.
Despite the heat and humidity, a large and enthusiastic crowd of approximately 3,500 guests were in attendance across the grounds of Rock Castle. Many more visitors opted to experience the concert from boats and watercraft moored on Old Hickory.
News Channel 5 Meteorologist Bree Smith served as emcee for the event. After offering a welcome and opening remarks, she introduced the first two performers for the evening, Rock Castle favorites the Magi and Striking Matches.
Following the opening acts, Hendersonville Mayor Jamie Clary and Rock Castle Executive Director Sam Gilbert addressed the crowd briefly before turning the program over to the symphony.
Leading the orchestra for the evening was Associate Conductor Nathan Aspinall, who began the concert with a stirring performance of the “Star Spangled Banner”, which featured a presentation of the colors by Hendersonville High School Marine Corps JROTC students. Subsequently, the symphony transitioned into the main portion of the program, which included a blend of popular and classical selections that spanned the catalogs of several popular composers, including Aaron Copeland, Antonin Dvorák and John Williams.
At the end of the evening, the symphony closed out the concert with a patriotic set featuring an armed forces medley, along with rousing performances of Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture” and Strauss’ “Stars and Stripes Forever”.