The Beaufort Youth Orchestra performed at the Performing Arts Center on May 7 prior to the Beaufort Symphony Orchestra (BSO) performance. The 42 young musicians performed an arrangement of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music.  They received a standing ovation.
The performance was to honor public school principals and music teachers that actively support the arts in our schools and community.  Ed Like, the Beaufort Orchestra Board President, acknowledged that without our public school string and band teachers Beaufort would not have a youth orchestra.  The honorees in attendance were Carole Ingram Principal, Beaufort Middle School, SC State Middle, Edmond Burnes, Principal Battery Creek, Denise Smith, Principal Robert Smalls Middle, Joe Wargo, Strings teacher, Beaufort Middle School, Margaret Rushton, BCSD Arts Coordinator.
      Greta Maddox, BYO parent liaison, presented private lesson scholarships to the BYO members.  BSO gives scholarships throughout the year for both private lessons and college to gifted and talented students.
     Through the work of the Beaufort Orchestra League and OUTBACK Steakhouse, enough money was raised to help these students continue with private lessons through the summer.  All of these students have made impressive improvements in their skills during the course of this year.
     Two special college scholarships were given to two students who will go on to study music in college.  Marc Fisher is attending Clemson University in the fall and James Fields will be attending Liberty University.  James has already auditioned and been accepted into their orchestra.  These two scholarships come from a long-time supporter, Mrs. Lee Stevenson.  BYO organizers truly appreciate the donations that help our children build a brighter future for themselves through music and hard work.  These kids learn determination, responsibility, accountability, and team work being involved with the youth orchestra.  These are life skills that are learned in a fun way!
     In addition, the Orchestra has announced scholarships to our gifted and talented Sea Island School for the Arts (SISA) orchestra camp this summer, part of the Beaufort County School System under Margaret Rushton.  They are able to offer this scholarship thanks to the generous donation from the Fripp Friends of Music organization.  With their help, the Orchestra gave 13 students private lesson scholarships this past Spring and the remainder will be used for SISA camp. "This is an exceptional opportunity for our talented young people to explore and learn more about their craft," said Kristy Smith, curriculum development specialist with the Beaufort County School District.  The following students were awarded scholarships:  Collette Kemmann, BMS, Chris Daigle, RSMS, Allison Crandall,BMS, Dylan Yagle, RSMS, and Tafari Salaam, BMS.
     SISA is a two week arts camp in July for the artistically gifted student.  The “orchestra camp” will be taught this year by Fred Devyatkin, conductor for the Beaufort Symphony Orchestra.  The students will spend two weeks with a professional conductor learning about music theory, intonation, sight reading, performance and appreciation.
     Greta Maddox closed the awards by announcing that August 27th is the BYO audition date for new students.  “We want parents and students to know about the BYO and to consider us a viable addition to your children’s education.  With the support of people in our community, our great teachers and principals, the students and their families, we envision our youth orchestra growing to 50 students next year.  If we don’t see you at our audition please consider coming to hear the BYO perform.  We will publish our schedule of concerts in August and all our performances are FREE.”
     For information on BYO or to make a contribution to the scholarship fund call Greta Maddox (BSO board member) at 843 476-1310.