St. Augustine Community Orchestra's Fall Concert Features Duo Violinists | Arts & Culture

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St. Augustine Community Orchestra's Fall Concert Features Duo Violinists
St. Augustine Community Orchestra's Fall Concert Features Duo Violinists

An exciting pair of award-winning violinists will perform Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Concerto for Two Violins” with the St. Augustine Community Orchestra as the featured presentation of its 50th anniversary season’s Fall concert. They are Gabriela Peňa and Ian Fell, seniors at Creekside High School, who have both been playing violin since they were very young. Both have been members of the Jacksonville Symphony’s Youth Orchestra for many years, studying with principal violinists.

Gabriela Peňa participates in the rigorous International Baccalaureate program at Stanton College Preparatory School, majoring in music. She has attended the Interlochen Arts Camp, with a full Emerson scholarship; also receiving full scholarships to attend the Kennedy Center Music Program and the Tanglewood Summer Music Festival. She was concertmistress while at Interlochen in the World Youth Symphony Orchestra, and a finalist in the Young Artist Concerto Competition sponsored by the Jacksonville Symphony’s Youth Orchestra program.

Ian Fell has been a member of the Jacksonville Symphony Youth Orchestra for 5 years and is currently assistant concertmaster for the Philharmonic Orchestra. He has performed at Jacksonville’s Friday Musicale as part of their Emerging Young Artists Series. He is a member of the National Honor Society and Science Honor Society as well as a member of Creekside’s Vocal Ensemble. He plans to study violin and computer science in College. Other works to be heard on the orchestra’s program of “Greatest Hits” by favorite composers will be Gioacchino Rossini’s “William Tell Overture”, Ludvig van Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’ Symphony No. 9, Georges Bizet’s “Carmen Suite”, and Kenneth Alford’s “Colonel Bogey March” from the 1957 Oscar-winning film “Bridge on the River Kwai”, and much more.

The orchestra plans two performances; the first at 8 pm Friday October 28, 2011 at the Lightner Museum’s Antique Court, 25 Granada St., St. Augustine; and the second, an encore matinee performance, will be held at 3 pm at the Ponte Vedra United Methodist Church, 76 South Roscoe Blvd., Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082. Tickets are $10 at the door; children 12 years old and under are admitted free. The Lightner Museum is an in-kind sponsor of the St. Augustine Community Orchestra, making its large enclosed courtyard area available for concert performances. The area was originally an Olympic-size swimming pool for the opulent Alcazar Hotel built by Henry Flagler in 1887. The venue offers unique acoustics for orchestral performances.

Orchestra rehearsals are on Tuesdays from 7 to 9:15 pm at Murray Middle School, 150 N. Holmes Blvd. St. Augustine. The school is an in-kind sponsor that has generously agreed to provide space for the orchestra’s weekly rehearsals. Accomplished musicians interested in joining St. Augustine’s all-volunteer Community Orchestra should contact Becky Brown at 904-825-1156. Especially needed are: double bass players, percussionists, tuba, and trombone players.

Music Director /Conductor William McNeiland has planned to offer small ensemble performances in response to requests from local organizations, schools, senior centers, or private functions for a minimal fee. To arrange for an ensemble performance, call Mr. McNeiland at 904-743-5674. In addition to ticket income and in-kind sponsorships, the St. Augustine Community Orchestra is supported by the St. Johns Tourist Development Council, corporate and individual donors, and advertisements published in the orchestra’s concert programs. To make a contribution to the orchestra, please make your check out to The St. Augustine Community Orchestra, and mail it to: P.O. Box 2163 St. Augustine, FL 32085-2163. Your support is very much appreciated. For more information visit the orchestra’s website at   

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