Credit: Pixabay

Students perform in annual Okanagan Symphony Youth Orchestra

Okanagan Valley students are getting a taste of orchestra performances

Okanagan Valley students are getting a taste of the symphony with the Okanagan Symphony Youth Orchestra’s spring concert.

Founded in 1988 by Imant Raminsh, the OSYO is in its 29th season and features 80 students from throughout the Valley. Under the direction of Dennis Colpitts and Rosemary Thomson, the OSYO came under the umbrella of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra in 2012. “These students learn at the speed of lightning and we are really looking forward to sharing their wonderful talents on stage next week,” said co-director Dennis Colpitts.

The OSYO provides a rigorous orchestral education for advanced music students in the Okanagan. Through this program, students come from as far north as White Lake and as far south as Keremeos to rehearse together weekly, according to an OSO news release.

An overnight rehearsal camp in the fall and an annual side by side experience in the OSO Masterworks series are part of this program. Students are also featured as concerto soloists and composers on the OSYO annual fall and spring concert programs.

The OSYO Spring Concert will feature violinists Emily Traversy playing the second and third movements of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto and Libby Wise performing the first movement of Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5. Chris Dlouhy, who plays clarinet in the orchestra will be featured as piano soloist for the 2nd movement of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3.

“One of the special opportunities for these students is the chance to compose for orchestra and to hear their pieces performed,” said Thomson. “We are the only Youth Orchestra in the country to offer this and we have heard some magical compositions over the years.”

The spring concert will feature new works by students Joel Casson and Leif Jack.

The students will finish this exhilarating performance with Dvorak’s Symphony No. 8.

Performance and ticket information are as follows:

Vernon – Saturday, May 5 at 3 p.m. – Trinity United Church in Vernon (3300 Alexis Park Drive)

Penticton – Sunday, May 6 at 2 p.m. – Cleland Theatre in Penticton (325 Power St.)

Kelowna – Sunday, May 6 at 7 p.m. – First Lutheran Church in Kelowna (4091 Lakeshore Rd.)

Tickets for all shows also available online at

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