Astounding talent, dedication to excellence, and passion for music will be on full display when the Okanagan Symphony Youth Orchestra wraps up the 2021/2022 season with its spring concert.
Like its professional counterpart, the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra, the OSYO performs in all three Okanagan cities.
Performances take place Saturday, May 28, in Vernon’s Trinity United Church at 7 p.m.
“We are so very proud of the accomplishments of our OSYO musicians and are delighted to feature two soloists and two composers on this concert,” said co-conductor Rosemary Thomson.
Original works by Dryden Bennett (Mayflower Fields) and Alex Thiessen (The Lagoon) will be performed
Bennett “fell in love with music” at his first rehearsal with the OSYO, three years ago.
“Hearing these new sounds from the orchestra truly inspired me,” said Bennett, who started composing in March 2020 to keep a connection to music while the pandemic put OSYO rehearsals on hold. “I quickly became passionate about composition — I would compose every day until I came up with something that I thought sounded good.”
Thiessen is a multi-instrumentalist in his third season as a violist with the OSYO; he is also an accomplished pianist and vocalist who has been recommended to represent the Kelowna Kiwanis Festival at BC Provincials. Reflecting on his earliest piano lessons, Thiessen remembers thinking “What is the point of playing these songs? I should be writing them.”
The OSYO also provides concerto performance opportunities to ‘soloists in the making.’ This concert provides a rare opportunity for something seldom considered to be a solo instrument — the timpani. Percussionist Emma Barnett will prove otherwise with her performance of a movement from Ney Rosauro’s Concerto for Timpani, composed in 2003. Barnett has been playing percussion for seven years.
Flutist Alice Nie, the second concerto soloist featured on this program, will perform Fantasia de Carmen by Georges Bizet (arranged by Guiot/Egner). Nie is an accomplished young musician, having formerly held the position of Principal Flute/Piccolo with the Winnipeg Youth Symphony Orchestra. In addition, she won the Gold Medal for Royal Conservatory Level 10 Woodwind.
The young musicians are excited to present their first spring concert in three years, said co-conductor Dennis Colpitts.
The OSYO’s lower ticket price point makes high quality classical music affordable for a wide market of music fans. Tickets can be purchased through okanagansymphony.com/21-22-osyo/spring-concert/.