Youth symphony gets unique coaching

Submitted Photo Chautauqua Regional Youth Symphony (CRYS) students’ regular rehearsal schedule was augmented recently with coaching by professional performer/educators in upper and lower strings, woodwinds, brass and percussion. Support for this experience was provided by the Blossom Fund at the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation. SUNY Fredonia Associate Professor Dr. Marc Guy is pictured coaching CRYS brass players.

JAMESTOWN — With support from the Blossom Fund of the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, Chautauqua Regional Youth Symphony (CRYS) students had a distinctive experience: intense sectional coaching by professional performer/educators.

CRYS has three orchestras: Prelude Strings for beginning string players, Young Artists Orchestra (YAO) for intermediate musicians and Chamber Orchestra for advanced students. Cellist and conductor Maestro Bryan Eckenrode is CRYS Conductor and Music Director and leads the weekly rehearsals at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Lakewood.

Many studies have reported the connection between music education and both academic and lifetime achievement.

In keeping with its priority of offering exceptional music education, CRYS recently provided advanced coaching for its YAO and Chamber students.

Working with the students were Jennifer Jansen on upper strings; Kieran Hanlon, lower strings; Helen Ihasz, woodwinds; Dr. Marc Guy, brass; and Suzanne Fassett, percussion.

Each coach has extensive educational background as well as performing and teaching credentials.

Jansen is principal viola of Erie Chamber Orchestra, violinist with Erie Philharmonic, and instructor for Erie Junior Philharmonic Overture and Chamber Strings. Hanlon is Assistant Professor of Double Bass and Jazz at SUNY Fredonia. Ihasz is Instrumental Music Teacher at Westfield Academy and Central School and a certified NYSSMA judge. Guy teaches horn as SUNY Fredonia Associate Professor, and Fassett is Director of Arts Education at Chautauqua Institution.

CRYS students are preparing for their Spring Gala Concert, Sunday, May 19, 7 p.m., at Chautauqua Institution’s Elizabeth S. Lenna Hall. With a varied selection of works, the concert is free and followed by a reception.

Eckenrode is assisted by staff Prelude Coach Marie Karbacka, who is also Southwestern Central Schools Director of Orchestras for grades 5-12, and String Coach Cody Hiller, professional performer and Infinity Visual and Performing Arts Instructor.

To learn more about CRYS and its programs for young musicians, email ChautauquaRYS@gmail.com or visit the website at CRYouthSymphony.com or the Chautauqua Regional Youth Symphony’s Facebook page.