Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

First orchestra tour brings Augie music beyond campus

This fall break, the Augustana Symphony Orchestra will be doing a tour of the Chicago area. The tour will include two concerts, one at the Messiah Lutheran Church on November 3rd at 7:00 pm. And the other at Wicker Park Lutheran Church on November 4th at 7:00 pm. Both concerts are free and open to the public.
Dr. Chetel, who works with the orchestra, says “I am so excited for the orchestra to join the choral and band programs in this exciting and energizing tradition of sharing our music with audiences—including prospective students and families as well as alumni and their families—beyond our campus here in Rock Island.”
In previous years only the top band and choir went on tours. However, this seems to be changing as Jenny Lind Choir went on a tour last year and the Augustana Orchestra tours this fall break.
Jenna Dolan, a sophomore who has been a harpist in the orchestra for two years, explains that part of the tour will also include a workshop with the orchestras of Palatine High School and Lake Zurich High School who will then join the Augustana Symphony Orchestra in their concert that night at the Messiah Lutheran Church.  Dr. Chetel explains that he is “particularly excited to get to work with the orchestra programs at Palatine and Lake Zurich High Schools which are directed by Augustana Symphony Orchestra Alums Dung Pham ’94 (Palatine High School orchestra director) and Nathan Sakschewsky ’06 (Lake Zurich High School orchestra director).”
Dr. Chetel believes that “the orchestra works so hard on a program like this that it can be even more enriching to have the chance to perform it more than once. That is a part of the learning and growing process as an ensemble that we sometimes miss and [he is] looking forward to how [the orchestra’s] performances and understanding of the music continue to evolve over the course of [their] three concerts with this program.”
The Augustana Orchestra students will also get the chance to visit the Art Institute of Chicago for a guided tour by Augustana Professor of Art History Catherine Goebel of the modernist collection there. According to Dr. Chetel, the music they are playing this fall “was written in such a vibrant artistic environment, sometimes specifically with other artistic luminaries– for example, cubist painter Pablo Picasso– each work is either directly or aesthetically connected to the visual art movements happening in Paris at that time.”  Visiting the Art Institute of Chicago will be a chance for the students to see those works up close and further enhance their understanding of the music and the culture from which it came.
Rebecca Hobson, a junior who has been played the oboe in the orchestra for 2 years, enjoys being in orchestra because “Dr. Chetel tries to pick pieces that are very engaging for everyone so each section can have parts that can challenge them.”
Hobson looks forward to the tour because it is a chance for some people who might not have the opportunity to come to Rock Island to have the orchestra come to them and share the universal language of music.
This year the Augustana Orchestra also will perform a Fall Concert at Augustana on Saturday, October 21 at 7:00 pm in Centennial Hall. Dr. Chetel says the concert is entitled “Avant Garde Fantasies” and celebrates the collaborative modernist storytelling of early 20th Century Paris with the works of Claude Debussy, Erik Satie, and Igor Stravinsky.

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First orchestra tour brings Augie music beyond campus