Students from the Auburn Riverside High School Orchestra and Band played alongside musicians from the Auburn Symphony Orchestra for a Dec. 9 holiday concert. COURTESY PHOTO, ASO

Students from the Auburn Riverside High School Orchestra and Band played alongside musicians from the Auburn Symphony Orchestra for a Dec. 9 holiday concert. COURTESY PHOTO, ASO

Auburn Symphony, Auburn Riverside High School share the same stage in Dec. 9 concert

Band leader: ‘What an incredible opportunity’

  • Monday, December 16, 2019 2:59pm
  • Life

Students from the Auburn Riverside High School Orchestra and Band joined Auburn Symphony Orchestra for the first songs of the holiday concert on Dec. 9 at the Auburn Performing Arts Center.

The student musicians sat side-by-side with their professional counterparts on stage for an enthusiastic audience.

“I am so pleased that the Auburn Symphony reached out to our school to create this connection between student musicians and professionals,” said Meghan Wagner, band director and Performing Arts Department head at the high school. “What an incredible opportunity for our students to sit next to experts on their instruments and to learn from Maestro Schulz! Our students carry this valuable experience back to the school and enrich the quality of our music programs.”

Melinda Wharton, orchestra director at Auburn Riverside, appreciates the partnership between Auburn Symphony and the local school.

“I am incredibly thankful for Wesley Schulz and all of the musicians for allowing our ARHS Orchestra students to share their concert, Wharton said. “It was a fantastic learning experience for all of the students and for myself. This orchestra is a gem in this community, and I believe that including these students could help new families start attending the Auburn Symphony concerts. I sincerely hope we have a chance to do this again.”

The concert continued with music that delved into history, traditions – old and new – and a touch of nostalgia. The audience heard tunes from Ireland, Hanukkah traditions and a variety of songs from holiday movies. The evening ended with ASO’s annual sing-along.

Auburn Symphony’s next concert in the Symphony Series is Happy Birthday, Beethoven!, in celebration of the 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth, at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 16 in the Performing Arts Center. Tickets and information can be found at or by calling the Auburn Symphony office at 253-887-7777.

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