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Community Newsletter Racine Symphony Orchestra

Pictured is the 2015 Young Artists’ Competition winner Alexander Zhu.

The 2015 competition took place on Feb. 8, and Zhu performed “Zigeunerweisen Op. 20” on the violin by the composer Pablo de Sarasate.

Eager minds of all ages come ready to learn, enjoy and entertain — one of the common themes that run throughout our season of six concerts and seven music education programs.

Truly with “something for everyone,” the music education programs reach eager learners from preschool age through senior citizens. Led and facilitated by our professional musicians, each program facilities music appreciation, learning or skill development at age-appropriate levels. The Racine Symphony Orchestra is thrilled to highlight two of these amazing programs.

Young Artists’ Competition

The region’s most talented high school instrumental students vigorously prepare for our annual Young Artists’ Competition. Open to students in ninth through 12th grades residing in Racine or Kenosha counties (as well as current students studying with Racine Symphony Orchestra musicians), this season’s Young Artists’ Competition will be held on Sunday, Feb. 14, at First Presbyterian Church, 716 College Ave.

The competition will be begin at 1 p.m. and will continue until all entrants have performed. The competition is free and open to the public. Entrants must submit a registration form and nominal fee in order to secure a spot in the Young Artists’ Competition. The top three finishers will receive scholarship cash: $800 for first place, $600 for second place and $400 for third place. Additionally, the top finisher will entertain with an encore of their winning performance at the April 23, 2016 Masterworks Concert, “Rising Stars.”

Additional information, including the Young Artists’ Competition application, will be available in January at or by emailing

Middle School Mentorship Program

Currently in its second year, the Middle School Mentorship Program offers individualized learning opportunities to middle school instrumental students. Throughout the school year, students meet with their musician-mentor semi-weekly. Sessions build upon and supplement classroom instruction and are focused on skill development, building of confidence in performance abilities, preparation for competitions and motivation to continue instrumental music study. We hope to expand this program to additional middle schools, and eventually to every middle school in Racine County, in the coming years.

Making these programs possible

Importantly, the Middle School Mentorship Program, along with our concert for fifth-grade students, Side-by-Side Youth Invitational, PreConcert Conversations and High School Choral Invitational, are offered free of charge to participants. More than 2,000 “students” of all ages receive exposure to these enriching and instructive programs every year, and we believe that the number will continue to grow.

To continue to deliver these engaging programs, we rely upon six diverse income streams: ticket sales, corporate support, grants, advertising, special events and patron donations. As the Racine Symphony Orchestra underwrites considerable expenses for these programs, patron donations are necessary to enable us to continue offering this array of opportunities, and are very much appreciated. From now through May 2016, all new or increased donations to the Racine Symphony Orchestra will be matched by a generous, anonymous donor.

For more information on the Racine Symphony Orchestra’s concerts and educational programs, to order concert tickets or to make a donation, visit or call 262-636-9285. Email for Young Artists’ Competition application information.

The Racine Symphony Orchestra’s programming is made possible by generous support from The Racine Community Foundation, SC Johnson, Runzheimer Foundation, The United Performing Arts Fund, Johnson Bank, Educators Credit Union and our patrons and donors. The scholarship awards for the Young Artists’ Competition are made possible by a generous donation from Woodman’s Markets.


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