The Value of Community Orchestras
Author: Carol Roedder, PSO Violinist
In the world of solo performing, a talented and hardworking few make it to the very top of the musical echelon to earn their income by, among other things, performing with the major orchestras of the world. Many of these same musicians perform with community orchestras to round out their annual schedules. In the history of the Peninsula Symphony, we have had such headliners as Nicanor Zabaleta, Jean-Philippe Collard, Gary Karr, Laszlo Varga, Jeffrey Siegel, Chris Brubeck, Jerome Lowenthal, Marni Nixon, Christopher O’Reilly, Jeremy Cohen, Taylor Eigsti, Jon Nakamatsu – the list goes on. Well-known artists like these rely on community orchestras such as Peninsula Symphony for a substantial part of their concert tours each year.
We as community musicians and concertgoers have been entrusted with keeping symphonic and other classical music alive through the generations. It is we who enroll our children in music lessons, support their school and youth symphony activities, and encourage them to practice. It is we who attend concerts such as those presented by Peninsula Symphony and other community groups. Millions of us across the globe have been or are nurturers of budding artists. And the simple fact is that there are more — many, many more – performers in schools, colleges, and community groups than there are in major symphonic groups and professional theaters.
So whether you are a professional artist, a community group performer, or one who simply enjoys the music, we each need to ensure that this music continues for future generations.