WMU Symphony Orchestra to perform in Hart Oct. 2

September 26, 2023

WMU Symphony Orchestra to perform in Hart Oct. 2

HART — The Hart Community Performing Arts Series presents its first concert of the 2023-24 season with a special appearance by the Western Michigan University Symphony Orchestra at the Hart Public Schools Auditorium, located in the Hart Middle School, Monday Oct. 2 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are available at the door for $15, and season tickets for the entire eight concert season are still available at the series website, hartseries.org.

The Western Michigan University Symphony Orchestra has been praised as one of the finest university ensembles in Michigan and the region. Under the direction of Professor of Cello, Bruce Uchimura, the WMU Symphony Orchestra performs masterworks of the orchestral repertoire; features internationally recognized instrumental soloists and WMU faculty members; and collaborates with the WMU Grand Chorus and the WMU Department of Dance. The orchestra prepares a five to six concert season presented in both Miller Auditorium and the Dalton Center Recital Hall. Additionally, the orchestra members perform with WMU opera and musical theater productions on a regular basis. The orchestra has toured and performed at high schools, colleges and various performance venues throughout Michigan and abroad. Since 2014, the WMU Orchestra has collaborated with the Moscow Ballet in a performance of Tchaikovsky’s entire “Nutcracker” Ballet at Miller Auditorium. In 2018, the WMU Orchestra collaborated and performed for a short film entitled “Playing Egmont” with Detroit filmmaker Jeremy Dunbar and was made available on Amazon Prime.

The WMU Orchestra is composed of undergraduate and graduate music majors who take much pride in their ensemble. Auditions are held at the beginning of each semester and are highly competitive. The orchestra rehearses and performs at the highest possible professional level. Regular sectionals with highly skilled coaches and teachers and intense rehearsals contribute to the highly polished and musical performances. Students are expected to put in copious amounts of practice and score study outside of the scheduled rehearsals and sectionals.

One of the most innovative programs associated with the WMU Orchestra program is an annual “Chamber Music Festival.”  For one month, all  orchestra members break down into smaller chamber ensembles and rehearse and coach with WMU School of Music faculty members. All ensembles are assigned specific repertoire and perform their finished pieces in a formal concert. This demonstrates the WMU Symphony Orchestra’s commitment to chamber music and its many benefits to large ensemble playing. Orchestra members have regular sectionals with distinguished members of the Detroit, Grand Rapids, South Bend and Kalamazoo symphony orchestras.

The WMU Symphony Orchestra began in 1945 and has had seven different conductors. Julius Stulberg (1945-68), Herbert Butler (1968-83), Anthony Elliott (1983-87), Richard Suddendorf (1987-90), Robert Whaley (1990-95), Eric Shumsky (1995-98) and Bruce Uchimura (1998 -present).

On Monday afternoon, the orchestra will perform for students from the Hart Public Schools, as do all of the artists who come to Hart for the series. For further information about the Hart Community Performing Arts Series, see the series website at hartseries.org or contact series Artistic Director, Tom Kirk, at tomkirk@hartseries.org.

 

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