It's that time of year when the Genesee Symphony Orchestra rosins up the bows and gets crackin' on holiday chestnuts such as “Christmas Festival,” “Sleigh Ride” and selections from “The Nutcracker.”
The annual holiday concert is at 4 p.m., Sunday, at Genesee Community College.
GSO's concertmaster, Julia Plato, is looking forward to taking the solo on another holiday favorite, the winter movement from Vivaldi's “Four Seasons.”
She's excited about it, she said, because "I think it's insanely easy to make it sound modern, even though it was written through like 300 years ago. It still has so much excitement and vigor and, yeah, personality that you would never know that it was written in the 1700s."
Plato, who is originally from the Hershey area of Pennsylvania, is in her second year as the first chair of the GSO, under the direction of conductor S. Shade Zajac.
She's been involved in orchestra performance since she was a child, participating in the youth orchestra in her hometown.
"That's kind of where I fell in love with playing music," she said. "I went to school for music education in Ithaca and wound up teaching in Pittsford."
Through a friend, she heard about GSO during the pandemic, when the orchestra was still finding ways to perform, and that piqued her interest.
"I was so excited because I just wanted to have a group to play with, and it just lined up really well with the time that I moved to the area, and I found a good group of people to perform with," she said.
She's found it inspiring to work with Zajac.
"He has got such a great taste and repertoire," she said. "He selects very nice, well-rounded programming from all the modern works that you may not have heard to the classics that everyone hopes to hear."