Clifton Park The Northeast String Orchestra in Clifton Park offers children who play string instruments opportunities to play in an ensamble, an option not always available elsewhere.
Whether their skills are fundamental or advanced, children from 7 to 14 are welcome in the orchestra following an audition. The organization sets out to accommodate the varying degrees of experience through the orchestra itself, as well as that of Prelude Strings, which is not as “technically demanding.” Instruments played in the organization are violin, viola, cello and bass.
Auditions for the Northeast String Orchestra and Prelude Strings for the upcoming fall season will be held on Sunday, June 3 and Sunday, June 10 at the Shenendehowa United Methodist Church. For details, log on to nsorch.org.
The orchestra was founded in 2007 by string teachers Ellen Madison and Sue Nazzaro. The mission of the orchestra is “to build a friendly, enriching and supportive community for young string players and their families” and is separate than string lessons taken in school.
Ruth Schulman is the orchestra’s executive director. She said that between the two ensambles, there are around 60 musicians that perform two concerts every year.
Prelude Strings includes kids who have been playing an instrument for about a year and are at a level one. Those in the orchestra have been playing longer and at the more advanced levels of two, three and four.
“What these kids are getting through our orchestra is really at a much higher level than what they would get in their grade in school,” said Schulman.
Opportunities provided by the organization for younger children, say second-graders is usually not available in a school setting. But at 7 or 8 years old they are able to play the violin through the orchestra, according to Schulman. She also said that the music played by the two ensambles is more challenging that what is taught in schools.