Youth Symphony/Children’s Choir Set Joint Concert

The Shenandoah Valley Youth Symphony Orchestra and the Shenandoah Valley Children’s Choir will present a joint concert 7 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 23, in Lehman Auditorium.

Shenandoah Valley Children's Choir
Ben Elliott and fellow members of the SVCC Concert Choir will also perform Nov. 23 on the Lehman Auditorium stage.

The 37-member youth symphony, part of EMU’s Preparatory Music program, will perform Vaughan Williams’ "English Folk Songs Suite," Tchaikovsky’s "March Slave" and Rossini’s "William Tell Overture."

Helen Furry and Meg Smeltzer will perform the solo parts of "Concerto for Two Violins" by J.S. Bach. Both students are seniors at Eastern Mennonite High School and are violin students with Dr. Joan Griffing, professor of music at EMU.

Helen Furry and Meg Smeltzer
Helen Furry (l.) and Meg Smeltzer are featured soloists on a Bach concerto at the Nov. 23 joint concert of the Shenandoah Valley Youth Orchestra and Shenandoah Valley Childrens Choir. Photo by Lindsey Roeschley

In addition to playing in EMHS instrumental ensembles, Helen is active in her church music program, singing and playing violin. She is a participant in District Choir, All Virginia Choir and Honors Choir and enjoys acting in plays and musicals. She hopes to study music and ministry in college next fall. She is the daughter of Joe and Linda Furry of Harrisonburg.

Meg Smeltzer is also a member of the EMHS Touring Choir as well as Sweet Molassas, a girls’ a cappella group. In addition to participation in her school’s instrumental ensembles, Meg was also selected to participate in Senior Regional Orchestra this fall. A National Honors Society member, she plans to study music or English in college next year. She is the daughter of Sherwyn and Deirdre Smeltzer of Harrisonburg.

The Orchestra, conducted by Maria Lorcas, a violin teacher with EMU’s Preparatory Music program, consists of high school players from Page, Shenandoah, Rockingham and Augusta counties as well as Franklin, W.Va. EMU, James Madison University and Bridgewater College students also participate.

The SVCC Concert Choir, directed by Julia White, will sing "Wir eilen mit schwachen, doch emsigen Schritten" from a J.S. Bach Cantata; "I Will Bring You Brooches," text by Robert Louis Stevenson with Carol Warner on flute; "Tres Cantos Nativos dos Indios Krao," three songs from the native mountain rainforest people of the northern moutains of Brazil with Dorrall Price on djembe; "Turtle Dove," an English folksong; and "Children Go Where I Send Thee!," a gospel piece.

For the first time ever, the SVCC Preparatory Choir will join the SVCC Treble Choir on the fall concert.

The Treble Choir set will include "Hallelujah Round of Praise" by Mozart; "Path to the Moon," "Arruru," a Spanish Carol; "Johnson Boys," an American folksong featuring the boys ensemble and Bill Wellington on banjo; and "Hine Ma Tov," a Hebrew song with the Preparatory Choir.

The Preparatory and Treble Choirs will have just performed at the Virginia Music Educators Conference at The Homestead on Friday, Nov. 21. The combined younger choirs were selected to sing and Joy Anderson and Julia White will have presented a workshop for state music teachers.

A suggested $5 donation at the door will benefit EMU’s Preparatory Music program and SVCC tuition assistance fund.