The Red Mountain Chamber Orchestra exists to educate and give pleasure to the public by performing a repertoire of classical music composed especially for chamber orchestra, music not otherwise heard in Birmingham. One of the few such orchestras in the Southeast, RMCO was founded 30 years ago to provide a musical outlet for skilled players, conductors, and soloists in the community. Numbering about 50, the players are drawn from all walks of life and include students from area colleges, a physics professor, an emergency room physician, a dentist, and several research scientists at UAB, as well as band directors and string teachers throughout the community. Ranging in age from 16 to over 80, we are bound together by a passion that leads us to work diligently on concert materials for the sake of the music and for the joy of creating music together as an ensemble. Most of us studied our instruments seriously in university music departments and at conservatories before seeking other sources of income.
We have had the privilege of working with superb conductors and soloists, all of whom have had illustrious careers. Les Fillmer, music director of the orchestra for eight years, is now conductor for the Alabama Symphony Orchestra’s State of Alabama Ballet productions and for the Gadsden Symphony; David Itkin is music director of the Las Vegas and Abilene Philharmonic Orchestras and director of orchestral studies at the University of North Texas College of Music; Wes Kenney is directo