Chamber Orchestra Extends From Classroom to Community

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Chamber Orchestra Extends From Classroom to Community

Chamber Orchestra performs around the Wausau Community.

Chamber Orchestra performs around the Wausau Community.

Chamber Orchestra performs around the Wausau Community.

Chamber Orchestra performs around the Wausau Community.

Brooke Sprasky, Sports Editor

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What is Christmas without music? The D.C. Everest Senior High School provides a chamber orchestra program for students looking to not only volunteer to play in the Wausau community, but also to be challenged musically.

For this Christmas season, the chamber orchestra gave Christmas cheer to the following places: St. Terese Church, Covenant Community Presbyterian Church, Wausau Center Mall, Primrose Retirement Center, and the Christmas Expo at the Cedar Creek Mall.

Kongjai Xiong, Senior, has been a long-time member of the orchestra program.

“I have been in the school orchestra ever since fifth grade up until now. So, it has been almost eight years since I joined. I chose to play the violin because I loved how beautiful it sounded. Also, my aunt inspired me to play because she was in the school orchestra,” Xiong said.

Xiong explained that the involvement that chamber orchestra has outside of school is what made her join.

“I love how much our chamber plays outside of school. I wanted to be a part of that and show my passion of musicality more to the community,” said Xiong.

Chamber orchestra provides an environment for those musically inclined and are looking to be a part of a family.

“The best part about being in chamber orchestra is the environment, the music, and the feeling of being part of a family,” Xiong said. “I think being able to play with others that have the same passion as me really binds the connection that we have to each other.”

Xiong contends that, regardless of the situation, it is not bad to try something new, even if it seems scary at first.

“It may sound scary when you have to audition for something you want to try, but don’t let that hold you back from trying to join! The first year I held back, and I strongly regret that,” said Xiong.
Isabel Tveten, sophomore, has played piano for five years, bass for fives years, and violin for three years.

“I like that a lot of volunteering is involved, along with the upper-level music provided,” Tveten said.

Ms. Johnson, orchestra director at D.C. Everest Senior High School, describes the reward of leading Chamber Orchestra.

“This is a part of my job that, as a teacher, is very rewarding. The students really enjoy providing music for the community. Residents of the nursing homes and retirement centers love seeing our youth engaged in the Orchestra and really like hearing some of the traditional Christmas music that we prepare.” Ms. Johnson said. “As a director, I enjoy the Chamber Orchestra because the students are more motivated to achieve excellence and like performing for others.”

 Ms. Johnson hopes that students will be prideful for their involvement in Chamber Orchestra.
“I hope that students will feel a sense of pride, knowing that they are providing a happy moment for others. Students don’t receive material goods for playing in this group, unless there are cookies!” Ms. Johnson said. “There is a sense of pride and accomplishment students feel for their service in Chamber Orchestra. There is no measurement for this type of progress, but I can tell that students feel good about being involved.”

All in all, Chamber Orchestra allows for personal growth to those who join, which is useful for life outside of school.

“D.C. Everest is very fortunate that we can offer this type of experience to our Orchestra students. Having a successful Chamber Orchestra that is ready and willing to perform for community events at most any time of the year is a bit unusual,” Ms. Johnson said. “Personally, I feel this is a ‘must have’ in our program, as these are the types of experiences that will follow students outside these high school hallways and throughout their lives.”

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Chamber Orchestra Extends From Classroom to Community