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kpellack

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PHILHARMONIC ASSOCIATION INC
May 15, 2012

When I was in high school, the opportunity to be a member of an excellent youth orchestra came my way, and the experience has stayed with me all my life. So I happily accepted a Board nomination with the Philharmonic Association 3 years ago. The PA does so much MORE for young musicians than the organization I was a part of back in high school. They always seek to expand programs or create new ones to fill needs - needs which are many because our local school system cannot provide this kind of orchestral experience for young musicians. Currently, the PA sponsors 4 levels of orchestras and a jazz ensemble. I attended the top group's spring concert a few weeks ago and was amazed at the quality - if I closed my eyes I thought I was listening to a professional orchestra. And yet, the mission of the PA is not at all to exclusively train future professional musicians. The PA is more about creating the next audience for classical music, the next Board members, the next donors - in general, the next generation of those who appreciate classical music

More feedback

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

MY ROLE:
Board Member

PHILHARMONIC ASSOCIATION INC
January 30, 2011

I had been aware of the work the Philharmonic Association (PA) for years because of my own membership during my high school years in a youth orchestra. Only in the last few years, when I joined their Board of Directors, did I really come to understand the need this organization fills. Today schools are pushed to emphasize academic subject more and more. So often the arts are either minimized by only being offered as extracurricular activities or not offered at all. In our area, this is especially true for school orchestras. String programs have suffered cuts, and many school don't offer an orchestra experience at all.

The PA fills this void with not one, but four youth orchestras, geared to student ability, where young musicians learn and perform great orchestral works of the past and present. In addition, they sponsor a jazz ensemble that similarly allows exploration of the big band repertoire.

A unique aspect of the PA that is especially important to me is their emphasis on education. Many youth orchestras operate as pre-professional orchestras, with a primary mission of preparing their members for orchestral careers. The PA takes a broader view. Yes, a percentage of PA members do go on to become college music majors with plans for careers in music. But equally, if not more, important is their mission to create a lifelong love of and participation in music by the students. The PA creates career musicians, but also future parents who will foster a love of music in their children, future audience members, future community arts volunteers, future Board members, and future donors.

I'm very proud to be associated with them.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The PA presents two regular concerts each season. I attend these concerts and hear young violinists, barely past the beginner stage, playing adaptations of pieces created for their skill level. I then hear the two intermediate orchestras play ever more advanced adaptations and the advanced orchestra perform works in their original form. I experience their ever-increasing skill levels and sense their pride in bringing the notes to life. These concerts are always amazing experiences.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Easy - I would get them their own building so that they would not need to worry about their rehearsal space being taken away by changes in school policy (we currently rent from the public school system).

More feedback

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

How did you learn about this organization?

I was a youth orchestra member as a high schooler (different city) and have a natural interest in organizations such as this. A personal friend was a long-time Board member.

What is this organization's top short-term priority?

They need to secure a space for rehearsals and storage that they control. Currently they rent from the public school system.

What is its top priority in the long run?

The organization founder is still its artistic director, and hopefully will continue in that capacity for years to come. But "continuity of business" is definitely a longer-term priority.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

MY ROLE:
Board Member & I serve as a board member and chair their Strategic Planning Committee. Currently we are working on expanding staffing and finding a permanent home for rehearsal and recital use.