Community Orchestra Inspires Audience
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The Fresno City College Community Symphony Orchestra performed for FCC students, relatives and community members on the night of Feb. 28.
The performance featured the works of musicians Ambroise Thomas, Felix Mendelssohn and Johann Strauss II.
In the Old Administration Building auditorium, conductor Jeffrey Sandersier directed the orchestra in hopes to leave the audience with an impactful performance.
“I like having these concerts so people go away happy,” Sandersier said. “They can leave with goodness, which is great especially in today’s time.”
After John Morrice, the concertmaster, led the orchestra in its tuning, the orchestra began their performance with “Raymond Overture,” by Thomas.
Thomas’ piece began with the entire orchestra and continued with a pleasing melody that started with the violins and was later met by the sounds of woodwinds.
For the end of the overture, the entire orchestra played together to create a slow build up to an exciting ending.
During each piece, the orchestra members played their instruments with furrowed eyebrows, their fingers moving swiftly across the strings and their lungs filling with air to support their wind instruments.
“[Performing] is exhausting,” violinist Souvixada Somsacksy said. “It’s a culmination of all our hard work. You get to show people how much you care about the music.”
The concert continued with a piece by Mendelssohn, called “Symphony No. 3 A Minor, Op. 56.”
Mendelssohn’s piece started slow and gloomy, picked up the pace with a section dedicated to the clarinets, continued with a march-like theme and concluded with an aggressive, striking ending.
Between each piece the audience applauded the orchestra.
Linda Chueng, an audience member, said she thought the orchestra played well, especially Mendelssohn’s difficult piece.
Strauss II’s “Nordseebilder (North Sea Pictures) Waltz, Op. 390” ended the concert.
Members of the symphony orchestra include FCC students, community members and semi-professionals.
“We work hard,” violinist Derrol Keith said. “This is test night. I get to show what I am capable of, and we get to show what we are capable of.”
In 1969, Alex Molnar and Robert Kazanjian founded the orchestra and it has continued to perform since.
Sandersier has been the conductor since 1991 and enjoys the emotional impact these concerts can have on an audience.
“These concerts can move people emotionally,” Sandersier said. “Then when they leave, they can do something positive.”