THS Symphony Orchestra to perform special ‘preview’ concert at TCA

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The TSO has been rehearsing for weeks for its appearance at the Michigan Music Conference on January 18 in Grand Rapids. Photo submitted.

The Tecumseh High School Symphony Orchestra (TSO) is planning a special concert at the Tecumseh Center for the Arts on Wednesday, Jan. 9, at 7 p.m. and members hope the community will come and hear them play. Admission to the preview concert will be free giving locals a chance to experience the music that students have been diligently working on for their performance at this year’s Michigan Music Conference in Grand Rapids on Friday, Jan. 18.

“This is a huge honor for them, one of the highest honors a high school orchestra can get,” said Theresa Powers, who oversees The Elizabeth Ruthruff Wilson Foundation which supports the Tecumseh Public Schools strings programs. “They were only one of three groups invited to do this. The concert is a way to say ‘thank you’ to the community for its support and to afford them a chance to go and see them perform,” Powers added.

The Friends of TSO commissioned Bob Phillips, TSO’s first teacher, to write a piece that will be debuted to the public at the January 9 concert.

“It’s a gorgeous number and the name of the piece is ‘Aspire — a dream fulfilled,’” said Powers. At the top of the music is written, “Commissioned by the Elizabeth Ruthruff Wilson Foundation in memory of Elizabeth, and dedicated to the vision of Theresa Powers, the students of the Tecumseh Schools Orchestra Program and their directors, Amy Marr and Michael Bough.”

Powers said a special keepsake program is being printed for the occasion and includes a photograph of Wilson’s personal violin.

In addition to the Phillips piece, music by Grieg, Phillips, Balmages, Ellington, Holst, Bruch and Whitacre will be performed. Marr will serve as guest conductor and Senior Soloist Kali Snead will also be featured.

Students have been preparing for several weeks for the Michigan Music Conference and the preview concert, Powers said, with various teaching guests working with them, including Val Palieri from Adrian College.

“It’s just such an honor for them to be invited to the conference, and we want people to know they can hear them play before they go,” said Powers. “We hope to be able to fill up the TCA for this event.”

While admission to the preview concert is free, donations will be accepted to help defray trip expenses to Grand Rapids.

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