From the Modified Prelude Program for beginners through four progressively challenging orchestras for experienced students, the Lakeland Youth Symphony has a music program for everyone. The programs include once per week rehearsals, several concerts, and opportunities for musical workshops and performance trips. The season runs from September through July.
Entry to the Lakeland Youth Symphony is by audition, except for beginners, where no prior music experience is required. Beginners as young as five enter the Lakeland Youth Symphony at the Prelude level. This is a two year program that has been developed and modified over a twenty year period in order to achieve the best results.
The auditioning student and Prelude graduates continue their musical education through four levels of orchestra. Auditioning students are placed in an orchestra that will provide the right level of challenge for their skills.
The Lakeland Strings is the orchestra for our younger students to introduce them to the string orchestra. They perform different parts within the ensemble, including both melody and harmony, while learning the important contribution of each part and instrument. They improve their skills while learning new keys, dynamics, styles and techniques in ensemble playing.
Students have the opportunity to develop within the orchestra and advance from beginners to leaders of this group. There is a strong nucleus of players that help the group perform more challenging music at each concert. To assist the newest members of the Lakeland Strings, our Symphony Strings and Symphony Orchestra players volunteer to assist at each rehearsal to keep individuals from feeling lost or overwhelmed. These Big Brother/Big Sister mentors unite our groups and add to the family feeling, as well as inspire our younger members. Under the experienced, nurturing, and energetic direction of Carol S. Meiseles, this group is a fabulous ensemble for young musicians!
The Lakeland Strings meets Monday evenings from 5:30 to 6:45 p.m.
As our students mature and their skills improve, they are ready to learn about the many different styles and periods of music. Their education continues by exploring the historical and artistic evolution of string music. The wealth of music accessible to these students broadens their knowledge and challenges their technical skills at each performance. Working together to perfect a unified sound gives them cooperative team skills and the social connection so important in these adolescent years. This is a full sounding orchestra with the musical ability to play a wide range of music and the discipline to focus on the material in a group setting. Each rehearsal is fun and informative and builds an ensemble with a unique sound and personality.
The Youth Ensemble, conducted by Sue On, meets on Monday evenings from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.
Our High School students have been playing their instruments for many years and have experienced different ensembles and a variety of music. At this level, it is time to think about what music means to us personally, as a society now and in the past, and the role it plays in our daily lives as well as our futures. As we work together creating this art form each week, we look beyond the notes and rhythms to the impact and feeling of our music. We learn how we can change both the message of a piece through performance and our environment through music.
Time is at a premium for most students at his age, and each rehearsal will be a valuable and enjoyable experience. Students need to be committed to this ensemble and the most dedicated students will be rewarded with leadership roles. This orchestra takes the student’s musical experience and skills and bring them to a more artistic and thoughtful level while playing some of the world’s most amazing string repertoire.
The Lakeland Philharmonia, conducted by Theresa Kemp, meets on Monday evenings from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.
Lakeland Youth Symphony Orchestra
The Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Petko Dimitrov, meets on Tuesday evenings from 7:00 to 9:15 p.m.
If you would like to schedule an audition for entrance to this orchestra, please email or call 973-402-6010.
Members of the Symphony Orchestra Chamber Group meet on Tuesday evenings from 6:15 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.