MORGANTOWN — With a few tuned strings and a couple quick scales, the Morgantown Community Orchestra came together Monday for their first rehearsal of the summer at the Creative Arts Center. The group is prepping for their concert on July 21, at the WVU Art Museum.
Karen Taddie, Coordinator, of the Community Music program, said the program goes in terms (fall, spring and summer.) Taddie, a Nationally Certified Teacher of Music of piano, coordinates the program alongside teaching lessons.
The Community Music Program has been around since 1962, known then as the Preparatory Department. Margaret Lorince started the structured programs all those years ago.
Taddie, who’s lived in Cleveland, Boston and now Morgantown spent time in all those places associated with community programs. She said programs like the Community Music Program allows for a starting point and a place to reach out.
Aside from the Morgantown Community Orchestra, the program offers an array of opportunities, including private lessons and early childhood programs for toddlers and even infants.
“We’re very all-encompassing, and it gives the community an outlet and to connect with other people who enjoy making music,” Taddie said.
Music allows people to be expressive and is proven in many studies to help promote lifelong intellectual longevity, something the program believes in wholeheartedly.
The orchestra is comprised of a force of musicians from kids who are middle schoolers to senior citizens. The wide array of talented individuals are headed up by Maestro André
Januário, an animated conductor in charge of a groups of woodwinds and strings.
Januário is from Brazil and plays the Bassoon. He received his Bachelor’s of Music back home and studied conducting. He was a concert bassoonist in an opera house in Rio de Janeiro and taught while in Brazil.
Since coming to America, he received his masters degree and is currently working toward his Doctorate of Musical Arts..
Monday was the Community Orchestra’s first rehearsal for the summer, but Januário said he worked with the majority of them before.
“It was the first time playing that repertoire together, and it was pretty good,” he said.
In choosing the music for the group, Januário has to consider the parts for their performers. If they’re a beginner, he might have to arrange something simpler. Many people in the group might have to work and may not have the time to devote to practice. It’s not just about the music, it’s about knowing your instrument.
“Your success of your rehearsal depends on how well you know the score, and that demands a lot of time,” he said.
Getting to know the repertoire is important so musicians can know what parts they need to rehearse, said Januário. The first rehearsal merited a play through of the music so the members of the orchestra could get acquainted with it and find what might need practice.
Januário believes music is important, but the answer might be bigger than the question.
“I used to say when we’re born, we don’t speak first, we sing first. Some cultures consider the crying as a kind of singing,” he said.
He said he knows people have the need to express themselves using musical patterns and sounds.
“I think it’s a kind of a necessity for us, we need that. If you ask me why, I don’t know exactly, but its part our nature as a human being,” he said.