Classical music lovers were treated to fantastic performances during May 4th and 5th’s “Ode to Joy” event by the Frederick Symphony Orchestra. The performances, which took place at the International Community Church in Frederick, Maryland, included the pieces Festive Overture, Op. 96 by Dmitri Shostakovich, Symphony No. 8 in B Minor, D. 759 “Unfinished” by Franz Schubert, and Symphony No. 9 in D Minor, Op.125 by Ludwig van Beethoven.
The Frederick Symphony Orchestra is, according to the orchestra’s website, a community orchestra founded in 1997. The FSO consists of amateur and professional musicians from in and around central Maryland and every year the orchestra puts on a series of concerts. The concerts include contemporary selections, pops concerts, classical selections and educational programs. The orchestra is affiliated with Frederick Community College, is supported by the Maryland State Arts Council and the Frederick Arts Council among private donors and local corporations. The FSO is also incorporated in the state of Maryland as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.
The FSO is committed to supporting Frederick’s cultural atmosphere and its surrounding communities by creating opportunities for local musicians to perform and hone their talents. One of the ways the orchestra is sticking to their commitment is through its Young Artist Competition. Starting in 1999, the Young Artist Competition showcases the talents of local music students. In its eleventh season, the FSO has also established the Frederick Orchestra Guild (FROGs) for community service.
Ed Goley of the FSO reported that, in promoting the “Ode to Joy” performances, online tickets were “a significant part of our strategy and it worked well.”
Goley said the event was “outstanding” with “about 1,000 patrons” in attendance. His favorite part of the evening was the fourth movement of Ode to Joy. “The hall was vibrant with the sounds of the full symphony, 150 chorus members singing and 4 operatic soloists!” One of the surprises of the promotional campaign was, according to Goley, “[s]eeing our local baseball team’s mascot conduct our symphony on a TV commercial. I’ll never forget that one.”
After “Ode to Joy,” the FSO will tackle Broadway standards during their June 15 performance of “A Salute to Broadway” at Frederick Community College. If you’d like to learn more about The FSO, upcoming performances, its youth programs and how you can donate, visit their website. You can also connect with the FSO through its Facebook and Twitter pages. Videos of the FSO’s performances can be found on its YouTube page.