The first time I ever saw the BSO was from a performance on CATS. I wondered who they were...when I found out it was Bloomington's own community orchestra, I couldn't believe it. They were so much better than any community orchestra I'd ever heard. Several years ago I auditioned for the second violins. Suffice it to say, I've never looked back. I have never been so impressed with a nonprofit's musical direction, choice of repertoire, dedication, congenial spirit, contribution to the community, and level of excellence. I have seen Maestro Latshaw make music accessible to untrained listeners, volunteers give all they have and more, participated in "side-by-side" concerts with budding high school musicians, children's smiles at the "meet the instruments" program, etc. None of the eight Indiana University Orchestras, the POPS or Camerata (to my knowledge) do these things. Plus, the BSO affords those of us for whom music is an avocation the best possible orchestra opportunities in a town where there would otherwise be very few. I thank my lucky stars for the BSO!
I have performed alongside the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra several times as a fill-in and was amazed each time at the level of musicianship and passion involved! Rehearsals (and concerts) have a clear structure and the musicians are focused on the end goal of delivering a great concert to the public. Their children's concert was brilliantly delivered, had an outstanding turn-out, and, best of all, gave dozens of kids the opportunity to have invaluable one-on-one learning experiences with the instruments! This is one community group that unites to perform their best and deliver enlightening, educational, and enriching concerts to members of the community.
I have been playing violin in The Bloomington Symphony for many years and have experienced its influence on the community first hand. Of special value is its exposure and hands-on experience of music to children. But audiences too get to a treat, not only by listening, but gaining fascinating backgrounds to the music they hear and in an entertaining format. For the musicians it is a wonderful chance to make music, to involve family and friends. The Bloomington Symphony is a true intergenerational community, a celebration of sharing, among one another and with the community.
Donna told my story. Word for word. I could not have said it more eloquently.
Bloomington Symphony Orchestra is a wonderful organization that has provided a fantasitc opportunity for personal and musical growth. This has been the first orchestra I have joined since college, and I am very proud to be a member.
The Bloomington Symphony Orchestra is an inclusive group that provides great music to Bloomington! The BSO has unbounded passion for music and camaraderie that brings Bloomington and Monroe County musicians of all ages and professions together.
The Bloomington Symphony Orchestra has been able to build a phenomenal sense of community - not only through its performances, but also through outreach programs like the Children's Instrument Recovery Program (ChIRP), side-by-side concerts with local schools, a youth concerto competition, and Meet the Instruments (where school kids get to try out the different instruments of the orchestra). Volunteers and audience members all agree that the BSO is something special in our community, and I'm very proud to say I've been a volunteer with this organization for the past 15 years. There really is something special about the BSO.
Bloomington Symphony is an unique, and extraordinary musical group. Our conductor leads and rehearses us in a way which brings us to a higher level than we have ever played. Because he believes we can and cheerfully challenges us, we accomplish an incredible concert every single time. The results are remarkable because most of us play well, but very few of us can claim professional status. Our results are the most professional of any community orchestra I've ever seen. We play for the joy of performing such wonderful pieces. We also often have students from different parts of the world. I have shared a stand with Russian, Chinese and German cellists and it has always enriched me. It is a fabulous group with which to perform.
I love playing in the Bloomington Symphony. It is a great group of people that make everybody feel welcome. Everybody gives their best and it results in some great music. I really enjoy that in the concerts the background given about the pieces is for everybody and not just classical music snobs.
The Bloomington Symphony Orchestra has become an inspiring organization. Players in the orchestra are primarily community volunteers practicing as a group only once a week normally. And it has presented some amazing performances. It is an enriching experience for me to be able to perform with the orchestra. Bloomington is full of extremely accomplished musicians since it is home to the IU Jacobs School of Music. So having a community based orchestra provides those of us that can play reasonably well a way of continuing our musical pursuits in a meaningful and rewarding way. The current musical director, Charles Latshaw, has inspired us all to play to the very best of our potential. And as each performance passes with success, that potential rises a little. The BSO is an organization that can proudly represent Bloomington
It is amazing what this orchestra accomplishes even though it is entirely populated with volunteers. They have themed repertoires for each performance and meld together both familiar and unfamiliar pieces for each one. For instance of their current season their first performance was called "Brasstissimo (ma non troppo)" and featured Respighi's "Pines of Rome," Borodin's "Symphony #2" and Glinka's "Overture to Russlan and Ludmilla". Remember, these are VOLUNTEERS playing this! The orchestra also does a free children's concert around Christmas and during the summer to introduce music to a wide audience. They also team up with local area high schools for a performance with the high schools' orchestras. Finally you do not want to miss the current conductor; he is a joy to watch and he always tries to do a bit of instruction in order to enhance your experience of the music. This volunteer orchestra is worth your time and money to go hear. For a full disclosure: I went to the performances of the BSO before I volunteered for them.