TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The East Texas community has a long history of supporting live music and the musicians who create it. One of the best examples of this is the long-lived East Texas Youth Orchestra.
The orchestra was founded over 60 years ago and has since grown from a small strings-only ensemble to a full orchestral performance under conductors Felix Torres and Sarah Reason. Students from around East Texas participate in the orchestra.
You can hear these talented young musicians play on Sunday, February 24 at 4 p.m. in Tyler’s Caldwell Auditorium. They’ve been practicing for the concert for six weeks. They will perform a variety of pieces they’ve been practicing in preparation for a summer music festival in Vienna.
Torres says what makes the performances so special is the musicians themselves.
“It’s a lot of fun to be able to get to work with everyone, especially because they’re coming from all different backgrounds,” Torres says, “different schools, some home schooled, private schooled, public schooled. So it’s really nice to get to work with everyone that’s coming in from all different places.”
According to its social media bio, ETYO’s mission is “to provide a dynamic, classical musical experience in which talented young East Texas musicians receive high-quality instruction and significant opportunities for orchestral performance. ETYO will augment quality instruction already achieved at the middle school and high school band and orchestral levels in addition to any private instruction the youth may obtain. The ETYO will partner with public and private schools, private instructors, and home school environments to add to the young musician’s experience and training.”
The ETYO, through its primary components, the East Texas Youth Orchestra, East Texas Academic Orchestra, and East Texas Prepartory Orchestra, and its various smaller ensembles, accomplishes an extended music education by meeting the following objectives, its site says: Education, Experience, Encouragement, Excellence, Enrichment, and Enjoyment.