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Posted: March 20, 2016

POTSDAM - The Orchestra of Northern New York proudly announces a donation has been received to name the principal bass chair in the Orchestra as the Robert B. Washburn Chair.

Brooks Washburn, Potsdam, and his sister, Roberta Washburn Scharf, Albany, gave the gift in memory of their parents, Robert B. and Beverly D. Washburn, who were generous supporters of the arts and music in the Potsdam area for many years.

Our father often played double bass in several orchestras, and I remember for many years my parents also housed the principal bass player for ONNY when in Potsdam for concerts," Brooks Washburn said. "Bassists aren't featured much, but you would miss them if they weren't there," he added.

Beverly was a founding member of the Women's Air Force band, as a tuba player, while she was stationed in San Antonio, TX from 1949 to 1953. There she met and married Robert B. Washburn, also in the U.S. Air Force in San Antonio.  She was a fifth and sixth grade Social Studies teacher at Potsdam Central School from 1966 until her retirement in 1986. She was also a member of the board of directors of the Potsdam Museum and treasurer for many years of the St. Lawrence County chapter of the American Association of University Women (AAUW).

Robert was the chief arranger for the Air Force Band of the West and the Air Force Sinfonietta when he met Beverly, and also played in the San Antonio Symphony.  Following military service, he joined the faculty of the Crane School of Music. There, he was Dean, Professor Emeritus, and Senior Fellow in Music.

Washburn was a world-renowned composer with more than 150 compositions to his name. His works have been performed at EXPO '67, at the White House, Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, and Lincoln Center, to name a few. In 1980, he composed music for the opening ceremonies of the Lake Placid Winter Olympics.

Washburn received numerous awards, grants, and commissions during his career, including a Fulbright Senior Fellowship, and grants from the Rockefeller Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. In addition to his activities as a teacher and composer, he was a specialist in music from Africa and Asia.

Travel was his and Beverly's passion; they visited over 76 countries on six continents for both pleasure and research.  But they always came home to the North Country.

The Orchestra of Northern New York is honored by the Washburn gift. It is the only year-round, professional symphony orchestra between Ottawa and Burlington, and Plattsburgh to Syracuse. ONNY performs six concerts a year in Potsdam and four in Watertown. Now in its 28th season, ONNY operates on a $200,000 budget. Its 70+ musicians perform under the leadership of music director and ONNY founder, Kenneth Andrews.

"For over 50 years, Robert and Beverly Washburn were important contributors  to the Orchestra, the Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam and all aspects of the arts and life in Northern New York," said Mr. Andrews. "We are humbled and proud to accept this generous donation from the Washburn family."

For more information about ONNY or to learn about opportunities to support the orchestra, contact Executive Director Kathy Del Guidice at 315-267-3251 or visit www.onny.org.

Tags:
  • Chair
  • Composer
  • Educator
  • Washburn
Posted: March 9, 2016

POTSDAM, NY - The works of one of the greatest composers of all time come to life when professional actors and the North Country's only professional, year-round orchestra join forces to present a multi-media sensation next week.

Beethoven Lives Upstairs, a world-famous production of Classical Kids Music Education of Chicago, will be presented at 7:30 p.m., Friday, March 18 at the Clayton Opera House, and at 7:00 p.m. Saturday, March 19 in Hosmer Hall, SUNY Potsdam.

Equity actors Andrew Redlawsk, New York, portrays Christoph, the young lad whose life is turned upside down by the presence of a new boarder - Beethoven - as he learns to understand the composer's moods and frustrations with going deaf; and Thad Avery, Chicago, who plays Christoph's uncle and helps him deal with the new turmoil in his life.

The show features a lively exchange of letters between the young boy and his uncle. Their subject is the "madman" who has moved into the upstairs apartment in Christoph's Vienna home. As the correspondence unfolds, Christoph recounts the horrors of the composer standing naked at the window, water dripping into their apartment, and Beethoven playing late into the night.

Finally, after attending the famous first performance of the Ninth Symphony, Christoph comes to understand the genius of Beethoven, the torment of his deafness, and the beauty of his music.

The Orchestra will perform more than twenty excerpts from Beethoven's greatest works, including Moonlight Sonata, Symphonies 5 - 9, Fur Elise, and more.

Soloists are concertmaster John Lindsey, violin, and John Wyse and Francois Germain, pianos, both of whom are renowned performers and faculty members at the Crane School of Music.

Music Director/Conductor Kenneth Andrews opens the concert with Beethoven's Turkish March from The Ruins of Athens, Op. 113 (1812).

Also performing will be Kathryn Kovarik, violin, winner of the 10th annual James and Katherine Young Artist Competition, held last month in Potsdam.  She will play - from memory - Mendelssohn's Concerto in E Minor for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 64 (1844).

Kovarik, 17, is a senior at Manlius Pebble Hill School near Syracuse. A student of Linda Case, she won the Onondaga Civic Symphony Orchestra Youth Concerto Competition in 2014 and 2015. She has been both assistant concertmaster and concertmaster for the Syracuse Symphony Youth Orchestra and, in 2015, won the concerto competition for that orchestra. She is the daughter of David and Heidi Kovarik, Syracuse.

Tickets for the Potsdam performance can be purchased by calling 315-267-2277 or visiting www.onny.org. For the Clayton Opera House performance, call 686-2200.

The Orchestra of Northern New York is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NYS Legislature.

Tags:
  • Beethoven
  • Potsdam
  • Clayton
Posted: February 18, 2016

Winners of the Tenth Annual James and Katherine Andrews Young Artist Competition, sponsored by Orchestra of Northern New York, are shown here with ONNY Music Director Kenneth Andrews. From left to right, first place winner violinist Kathryn Kovarik, 17, Syracuse; second place winner harpist Shannon Boyle, 17, Potsdam; and third place winner pianist Rachel Sohn, 16, Clifton Park. The event was held in Hosmer Hall, SUNY Potsdam on Saturday, February 13.  Kathryn Kovarik will perform the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, third movement, with the Orchestra at its next concert on March 19, at 7:00 p.m. in Hosmer Hall at the Crane School of Music.

Tags:
  • Young
  • Artist
  • Competition
  • Winners
Posted: February 15, 2016

POTSDAM - A senior at Manlius Pebble Hill School near Syracuse won the 10th Annual James and Katherine Andrews Young Artist Instrumental Competition, sponsored by the Orchestra of Northern New York, on Saturday, February 13, in Hosmer Hall, SUNY Potsdam.

Kathryn Kovarik, 17, won the first place prize of $500 and the opportunity to perform the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, third movement, with ONNY at its next concert on March 19 at 7 p.m. in Hosmer Hall.  A student of Linda Case, Ms. Kovarik has also won the Onondaga Civic Symphony Youth Concerto Competition in 2014 and 2015. She has been both assistant concertmaster and concertmaster for the Syracuse Symphony Youth Orchestra. Last year, she won the concerto competition for that orchestra. She is the daughter of David and Heidi Kovarik, Syracuse.

Shannon Boyle, 17, from Potsdam took the second place prize of $300 by performing Concertstuck by Gabriel Faure. A home-schooled senior, Ms. Boyle has been studying harp for nine years. She has participated in Crane Youth Music, where she studied harp under Jessica Suchy-Pilalis. Ms. Boyle has also attended the Eastman School of Music summer music program. She is the daughter of John and Catherine Boyle, Potsdam.

Rachel Sohn, 16, of  Clifton Park, played the Piano Concerto No. 2, first movement, by Camille Saint-Saens to win the $150 third place prize. Ms. Sohn is a junior at Shenendehowa High School and has been studying piano since the age of four. For the last eight years she has studied with Dr. Young Kim, College of St. Rose. She has won several competitions in central New York. She is the daughter of Jaewoong Sohn and YooHee Kim, Clifton Park.

This year's competition involved seven students from Potsdam, Brownville, Syracuse and the Albany area. Applicants competed on piano, harp, flute, violin and viola.

The competition was established in 2007 to honor James and Katherine Andrews, great supporters of various activities for young people, especially those involving music. The mission of the competition is to inspire young musicians from northern and central New York to reach their highest level of artistry. It is one of the few competitions of its kind to offer both a cash prize and the opportunity to solo with a professional orchestra.

For more information about next year's competition or the Orchestra of Northern New York, contact Kathy Del Guidice, Executive Director, at 315-267-3251 or visit www.onny.org.

Tags:
  • Young
  • Artist
  • Competition
  • Violin
  • Winners
Posted: February 3, 2016

POTSDAM - Seven talented high school students from northern and central New York will converge on Snell Music Theatre, SUNY Potsdam at 10:00 a.m.,  Saturday, February 13th to compete in the 10th Annual James and Katherine Andrews Young Artist Competition, sponsored by the Orchestra of Northern New York.

The public is invited to watch in amazement as these young musicians play from memory pieces from an approved classical repertoire that range in length from seven to fifteen minutes. The students vie for first prize of $500 and the opportunity to perform with Northern New York's professional symphony orchestra at its March concert.

This year's applicants will compete on piano, harp, flute, violin and viola. They hail from Potsdam, Brownville, Syracuse, Clifton Park and Colonie.

The competition was established in 2007 to honor James and Katherine Andrews, great supporters of various activities for young people, especially those involving music.  The mission of the competition is to inspire young musicians from northern and central New York to reach their highest level of artistry. It is one of the few competitions of its kind to offer both a cash prize and the opportunity to solo with a professional orchestra. Cash prizes are also awarded to the second and third place winners.

For more information about the Orchestra of Northern New York, call 315-267-3251 or visit www.onny.org

Tags:
  • Young
  • Artist
  • Competition
Posted: January 17, 2016

Announcing our Winter Fundraising Dinner

An Italian Affair

Sunday, January 31, 2016
5:00 p.m.
Sergi's Banquet Hall
10 Market Street, Potsdam

Join Maestro Kenneth Andrews and ONNY musicians for a delicious supper fit for a king immediately following the Baroque concert, Music for the Royal Fireworks!

$25/person, which includes a $10 tax-deductible donation to ONNY.

Reservations and payments required by Noon, Friday, Jan. 29th. Call 315-267-3251 or click here for tickets.

Tags:
  • Fundraiser
  • Dinner
Posted: January 13, 2016

POTSDAM - The Orchestra of Northern New York, the North Country's professional symphony orchestra, is accepting applications for the James and Katherine Andrews 10th Annual Young Artist Instrumental Competition that will take place Saturday, February 13 at SUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music.  The deadline to apply is February 1st.

Talented high school students from northern and central New York are invited to participate.  First place prize is $500 and the opportunity to perform with the Orchestra at its March 2016 concert.  Cash prizes are also awarded to second and third place winners.

The competition was established in 2007 to honor James and Katherine Andrews, who were great supporters of various activities for young people, especially those involving music.  The mission of the competition is to inspire the young musicians of northern and central New York to reach their highest level of artistry. It is one of the few competitions of its kind to offer both a cash prize and the opportunity to solo with a professional orchestra.

The rules, approved repertoire and application for this competition can be found here.  All applications must be postmarked no later than February 1st to be eligible. For questions, contact email onnybusiness@gmail.com or call 315-267-3251.

Tags:
  • Young
  • Artist
  • Instrumental
  • Competition
  • Application
Posted: November 24, 2015

POTSDAM - The Orchestra of Northern New York, the region's only professional symphony orchestra, invites the public to come "Home for the Holidays," when it presents its popular holiday concerts December 11 - 13.

Celebrate this joyful season with a wonderful collection of new and old holiday favorites, including O Holy Night, Ave Maria, Greensleeves, White Christmas, The Night before Christmas, and more.

North Country Public Radio personality and renowned guitarist Barb Heller will narrate "The Night Before Christmas," the classic Clement Moore poem with an arrangement by Philip Lane. Best known for her role as on-air host for North Country Public Radio in Canton, Heller has been on the air since 1989 in the North Country, and a host for Folk Alley.com, an online music service, since 2005.  She’s also a guitarist/songwriter with five albums to her credit, and has taught hundreds of teens and adults how to play finger-style guitar.

Soprano Colleen Skull, newcomer to the Crane School of Music Artist Faculty this year, will be the featured soloist performing "O Holy Night" and Schubert's "Ave Maria." A Visiting Professor of Voice at the Crane School of Music, Skull completed her Doctorate in Musical Arts, specializing in voice performance at the University of Toronto. She has won many awards and prizes including the Metropolitan Opera District Competition, a Chalmers Award and a Professional Artist Grant from the Canada Council for the Arts.

Performances are 7:30 p.m., Friday, December 11 at Hosmer Hall, SUNY Potsdam, and 7:30 p.m., Saturday, December 12 at First Presbyterian Church, Watertown, the latter sponsored by Watertown Savings Bank. Tickets are $22 adults, $18 for seniors (62+) and military, and $5 for students, 6-17. They can be obtained by calling 267-2277 or visiting www.onny.org

The final performance on Sunday, December 13 at 3 p.m. benefits Massena Music Friends, a booster club supporting musical endeavors in the Massena School District. Tickets are $15 adults, and $12 for seniors and students. They are available at Season's Specialty Gifts, 27 West Orvis, 764-7671 or Phil and Jackie's, 69 Main St., 764-7844.          

Posted: November 16, 2015

The Orchestra of Northern New York has launched a new fundraiser for the 2015-2016 Season—a 50/50 Raffle. The first winner, Esther McKnight of Parishville, took home $82 following the gala season opening concert on October 24th. She said she was going to buy herself a new pocketbook! The raffle will take place at all Potsdam concerts throughout the season except the Baroque concert taking place in St. Mary's Church, Potsdam.

Tags:
  • Raffle
  • Potsdam
  • Fundraiser
Posted: September 28, 2015

POTSDAM - Offering discounts to military personnel has earned The Orchestra of Northern New York the designation of Yellow Ribbon Event.

Operation Yellow Ribbon is a volunteer-based committee, with representatives from many areas that soldiers support and from community organizations. Its charge is to promote visible signs of support for soldiers and their families and serve to promote area events that honor our military and provide discounts to service members and their families.

The Orchestra of Northern New York offers tickets to military personnel at $18 - a $4 discount off regular adult tickets.

At its summer pops concert each year, the Orchestra takes time to publicly recognize and thank audience members from each branch of the armed services.  A color guard opens the pops concert in Potsdam, this year with representatives of Canton VFW Post #1231 participating.

The Orchestra will open its 28th Season on Saturday, October 24, at 7:30 p.m. in Hosmer Hall, SUNY Potsdam with "Russian Passion." The concert features Sibelius' stirring masterpiece that celebrates freedom, strength and heroism. David Heuser's electrifying work is taken from the poem, "Music," dedicated to Dmitry Shostakovich and written by Soviet poet, Anna Akhmatova. The second half of the concert is the breathtaking and majestic Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4.

For tickets or more information, call 315-267-2277 or visit www.onny.org.

Tags:
  • Yellow Ribbon
  • Armed Forces
  • Veterans

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