From Kristen Wilson for Music Advocacy Group
It is probably the single largest music concert on Orcas Island, with more than 100 musicians performing, and every year they come together to volunteer their time and musical talent to support one great cause: The Orcas School Music Program. The Music Advocacy Group’s (MAG) 16th annual benefit concert will take place on Sunday, March 3 at 3 p.m. in the Old Gym at the Orcas public school.
“Nothing would make me happier,” said Catherine Pederson, President of MAG, “than to fill the entire school gym for this concert. Thanks to the community’s support, the MAG concert has become an island tradition. The whole community joins forces, and by their attendance they are saying, ‘School music matters!’ And we are so grateful for their support.”
The concert will feature performances by Orcas Choral Society, Island Sinfonia, Orcas Island Community Band, Orcas Youth Orchestra and Orcas A Capellagos, a new youth choir. Orcas Choral Society, under the baton of Roger Sherman, will sing selections from Mozart’s “Requiem.” Island Sinfonia, conducted by Ned Griffin, will play a Habanera by Chabrier and works by Aaron Copland and Lerner and Loewe.
The Orcas Island Community Band, with co-conductors Karen Key Speck and Jim Shaffer-Bauck, is considering several pieces, including “Hogan’s Heroes March” and the Chaconne from “First Suite in E-flat” by Gustav Holst. The Orcas Youth Orchestra, comprised of Orcas High School strings and band members (fresh from their highly-rated contest performances in Bellingham) will play Martin Lund’s arrangement of “Loch Lomond.” The Orcas A Capellagos will sing “Rivers and Roads” by the Seattle group The Head and the Heart. Together, the Orcas A Capellagos and the Orcas Youth Orchestra will perform Bill Withers’ “Lean On Me.”
No tickets are necessary. Admission to the concert is by donation, and all proceeds go to MAG, a 501(c)(3) organization whose sole purpose is to support and augment the music program of the Orcas Island public schools.
“Now, more than ever, we rely on the funds from this concert to help us continue to build a strong school music program,” said Pat Hunt, treasurer of MAG. “If you’ve heard about the outstanding performances by our young school musicians at the regional contests in Bellingham, then you know how much your dollars help. School music matters!” Those who cannot attend but wish to donate can make checks payable to “MAG” and mail them to MAG, P.O. Box 1171, Eastsound, WA 98245