Good-bye Summer…Hello Youth Orchestra!

Summer is just about over. Millions of families throughout the world are preparing for the start of a new school year. Malls will be bustling with shopping teenagers. Colleges will be overrun with undergrads moving furniture, clothing, iPads, and books into crowded dorm rooms. And moms everywhere will be both proud and melancholy as their firstborns head off to kindergarten – even if kindergarten is in the downstairs living room.

There is a lot to do in September! The seasonal clock is beginning to turn (autumn officially begins September 22 in the Northern Hemisphere) – signaling an anticipation of new beginnings. I find it both exciting and remorseful to watch those hot summer days come to an end. But, if you love music as much as I do (and, obviously, you all do!) there is a truly dazzling bright spot on the autumn horizon: Youth Orchestra!

Every year as my oldest daughter was growing up, I looked forward with great anticipation to Youth Orchestra 2the start of youth orchestra rehearsals in Philadelphia. There were three outstanding youth orchestra programs in the city at that time. We could not decide which would be best for Madison so we signed her up for all three! And Saturday night, after orchestra rehearsals were finished, we headed to a friend’’s house with three other young musicians for a weekly chamber music coaching.

Autumn, of course, is the busiest and most wonderful time of the year! School is starting, doctors appointments are beckoning, the outlets need visiting, young musicians are practicing frantically to get that one last audition piece perfectly memorized, and – best of all – the youth orchestra schedule is about to make its way from the inbox to my Google calendar.

Youth Orchestra 1I could elaborate on why I am passionate about youth orchestras, but, I’ve got too much to do. My youngest daughter goes back to school next week and we need to go shopping. She wears a uniform but the dress code is flexible on shoes! (I do have time, however, to post this moving article on the benefits of youth orchestra membership. I’’m sure the internet is filled with similar postings. When you run across them please post them here. Families will only benefit from the encouragement!)  Why Join a Youth Orchestra?

Sandy Marcucci
Philadelphia International Music Festival

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