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Youth symphony begins rehearsals

September 12, 2013
Westfield Republican / Mayville Sentinel News

Jamestown - Young musicians in the southwestern New York/northwestern Pennsylvania region have a rare opportunity: to perform classical music in an orchestra with a renowned professional conductor.

Rehearsals for the Chamber Orchestra, the string players of the Chautauqua Regional Youth Symphony (CRYS), begin on Saturday, Sept. 14.

Under the direction of Maestro Bryan Eckenrode, the Youth Symphony is composed of highly talented and motivated musicians ages 13 through college. The string players will perform a Chamber Concert on Sunday, November 24, at 7 p.m. in Jamestown's SS. Peter and Paul Church.

Rehearsals for the full Youth Symphony, including wind, brass and percussion players, and the Young Artists Orchestra of intermediate level musicians will begin Saturday, January 18, 2014, in Jamestown's Reg Lenna Civic Center. Prelude Strings, the beginning string orchestra, start rehearsals on Friday, January 10, 2014, on the Lutheran campus.

Last March the three orchestras traveled to Pittsburgh's Heinz Hall to hear the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra accompany a screening of The Wizard of Oz. A similar enrichment experience is being planned for the 2013-2014 season, possibly to hear the Rochester Philharmonic or the Cleveland Orchestra.

In the spring, the Youth Symphony has a Chautauqua Weekend. The students stay overnight at Chautauqua Institution's Bellinger Hall, where they have intense rehearsals, coaching, and a good time socializing.

CRYS Music Director Bryan Eckenrode will conduct all three orchestras in their Spring Gala Concert on Sunday, May 4, 2014, in the Reg Lenna Civic Center in downtown Jamestown.

Eckenrode made his Lincoln Center debut in 2003, returning in 2006. On the faculties of Canisius College, Niagara University and Jamestown Community College, he is also the director of the string department at Villa Maria College, Buffalo, and principal cellist with the Western New York Chamber Orchestra and the Southern Tier Symphony. He performs with several other orchestras and conducts the Warren (PA) Philharmonic Orchestra, the Buffalo City Strings, and the Vivace String Camp Orchestra at Houghton College.

Orchestra students are selected by teacher recommendation. Ensembles from the Youth Symphony can be available to perform for local groups.

For information about how your child or student can participate in the Chautauqua Regional Youth Symphony as well as to schedule ensemble presentations by these young musicians, call (716) 664-2465, ext. 202, or visit



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