Four Hopkins orchestra students will play in a concert with the Minnesota Orchestra on Saturday, Oct. 19. Jenna Ashford, Eli Brace, Gabriella Rice (not pictured), and Natalie Scanlon are members of the Minnesota All-State Orchestra and have been asked to play alongside the professional musicians in the Minnesota Orchestra at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis.
Alison Swiggum, Hopkins High School Orchestra teacher, said she is constantly looking for opportunities for her students beyond the classroom. The Minnesota Orchestra partnership provides students with an opportunity to see how professional musicians have made their career in music.
“It’s a really special opportunity to sit next to these amazing musicians and perform a piece of music with them,” Swiggum said. “I hope it’s inspirational for our Hopkins students.”
All four students are part of the All-State Orchestra, a program that develops high school musicians. The students attended an All-State camp in August with other student musicians throughout the state where they focused on developing advanced technique. Students in the program will collaborate and rehearse with the Minnesota Orchestra prior to the Oct. 19 performance.
The students agree that it is a great opportunity. Brace said he is looking forward to meeting the professional musicians and be able to experience what the future could look like for them if they pursued music as a career.
“When I first heard about (the concert), I was amazed that I was able to do this and sit next to someone in the Minnesota Orchestra,” Brace said.
While the students are excited to have the opportunity, there are still some nerves.
“It’s very daunting because there is no hiding...they are going to hear everything and there is a high expectation for being in the All-State Orchestra that you are good enough to be there,” Ashford said.
Concert tickets are available for purchase and range in cost from $5-$50.