Strings Music Festival: Embarking on new adventure

Strings Music Festival/For Steamboat Today
which is being included in the Routt County Youth Art Show at the Depot Art Center in Steamboat Springs.

Strings Music Festival and the Steamboat Symphony Orchestra are excited to begin a new adventure together starting in 2017. After a successful tenure with the Steamboat Springs Arts Council, the Steamboat Symphony Orchestra plans to reinstate its 501(c)3 as a stand-alone organization and begin to explore a bold new collaboration with Strings Music Festival.

Where does Strings factor into this move? The SSO has performed at the Strings Music Pavilion since 2009, and Strings Music Festival and the SSO and SSAC have worked closely through the past four years to provide top-notch concert experiences from the box office to production.

“The collaborative relationship between Strings and the SSO continues to be an essential component of the orchestra’s relationship to our community. Strings provides the space, the production team and the administrative team that enables us to connect our community to their orchestra,” said Ernest Richardson, SSO conductor.

With the evolution of SSO, Strings Music Festival and the SSO aim to grow their relationship to unprecedented heights. In addition to concert co-presentation and extra administrative support, SSO and Strings plan to align their education visions in order to reach even more students and youth in the Yampa Valley.

The SSO presents intensive teaching weekends biannually. Richardson travels from Nebraska especially for these intensives and leads a local team of music instructors. They provide top-notch instruction to local string students in private and master class formats through the course of 48 hours. Intensive weekends culminate in orchestra concerts that showcase students’ new knowledge in popular and traditional chamber music.

Strings Music Festival runs in-school music education programs for nearly 3,000 students in Routt and Moffat counties. Mozart Masters provides professional musician mentorship for middle- and high-school bands. Tchaikovskys in Training invites students to the Pavilion for a concert after they study curriculum that aligns with state and Common Core education standards. Piazzolla Pioneers is a formal commitment to bring high-caliber artists to schools in north and south Routt County that may not be able to spare the commute time to the pavilion.

Michael Sachs, Strings music eirector and principal trumpet of the Cleveland Orchestra, is most excited about the potential for collaborative education programs.

“The collaboration between the SSO and Strings gives us a wonderful opportunity to access local, Front Range and top-level musicians from around the country for the year-round benefit of the Yampa Valley’s students.”

The SSO plans to present its annual holiday concert Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 at Strings Music Pavilion, and tickets are on sale.

Sachs will join the SSO as trumpet soloist in March.

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