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The Orchestra and Dixieland Band gave another one of their “not so terrible” recitals at the Chappaqua Library auditorium on Dec. 1, 2012. The audience members who were made up of people of all ages thoroughly enjoyed themselves but I suspect the musicians also had a very pleasurable afternoon as well.
The Orchestra has been giving concerts throughout Westchester for about the past 4 years.
This group of adult amateur musicians is motivated by the enjoyment of making music together and has grown from 5 members to over 40 musicians and is still growing.
One of their unique benefits to the community is that they are child-friendly and provide a low-key venue for parents to introduce their children to both classical and Dixieland jazz music at no cost. The Orchestra and Jazz Band are also very popular with Westchester’s seniors and entertain at many of the senior residences throughout the County.
WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO JOIN AND ORCHESTRA WITH SUCH A PECULIAR NAME?
I think some of the comments from Orchestra members should answer this question very well:
ANITA(VIOLIN): “I started playing flute in 7th grade and as life got in the way I put it away for 40 years. Well, many years later after picking it up and playing for myself, by myself and wishing to have someone to play with, on my level, I noticed a flyer saying "no auditions." “Come play with the RTO”. Well, this sounded good and not intimidating. Who could be intimidated by this name? I showed up at a rehearsal and as I blew into my flute, I hardly could make a sound. I thought "this is not for me," "too nerve wracking" and was ready to get out fast. Because everyone was so supportive in the RTO, I stayed and lived to tell about it. I played in my first concert and had a great time! Now I want to buy a piccolo.”
STEVE (FRENCH HORN): "The most terrible thing about the Really Terrible Orchestra is that I didn't join sooner. This innovative group has allowed me to occasionally (though temporarily) return to those idyllic, halcyon days of high school orchestra some 50 years ago. Our accomplished (and extremely good natured and patient) conductor has given us exposure to some really fine orchestral music.”
BRIGITTE(VIOLIN) age 26: “I have been playing the violin since the young age of four. This Fall, after almost five years of looking at my violin case lying untouched in the corner of my bedroom, I felt a strong and sudden longing to play again. Who said I couldn’t continue to play as an adult? I searched the internet and I stumbled upon The Really Terrible Orchestra of Westchester – the answer to my prayers! Within the first few minutes of my first rehearsal, I felt at home again. Not only did it feel wonderful to be playing music again (it is true what they say, the whole “it comes back to you like riding a bike” adage), but the warmth and welcoming spirit of everyone in the group made me feel as if they had been waiting for me to join all this time. I have thoroughly enjoyed playing with the RTOW. Our music is both challenging and enjoyable and the group attitude is the perfect balance of jovial and professional.”
LLOYD(OBOE): “I played oboe in high school over fifty years ago. I decided to try again and found the announcement for the RTO. It has been a wonderful experience to be able to get together to play for two hours with people who have only the pleasure of music for the entire rehearsal time. It is a time of satisfaction and sanity in a stressful world.”
ROBBIE(TRUMPET): “Discovering the RTO enabled me to fulfill a part of a larger personal spiritual wellness plan to bring back into my life things that are most important. It is so difficult in this day and age to find a group that fits one's particular goals and, more importantly, one's schedule...and, that operates under harmonious conditions (no pun intended). RTO has done both. The fact that we have a superb conductor who devotes much of his own time to the betterment of the group thereby bringing it to unexpected levels, is just "icing on the cake." I am very grateful to be a part of this fine organization and to belong to a group of dedicated amateur musicians.”
The quotes above say it all. If any of these comments touches you and you play (or played) an instrument then please consider contacting us and joining in the fun.
We are the original NO-AUDITION Orchestra in Westchester and we rehearse every other Monday evening (7:30-9:30) at the ArtsWestchester headquarters building at the corner of Mamaroneck and Martine in Downtown White Plains.
Visit our Website: www.rtowestchester.org and visit us on Facebook. For further info: Les 914-238-9247 or 203-912-5801 (cell).