NEWBERRY — When COVID-19 prompted new safety regulations on the Newberry College campus this fall, a dozen community members of the Newberry Chamber Orchestra were left separated from their usual Monday night music-making experience.
Understanding Newberry College’s precautions, these community members — commuting from an hour’s radius of Newberry — unanimously agreed to keep making music after a rehearsal-space offer was extended by the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer. Now, every Tuesday evening the group convenes in their church’s Family Life Center.
“After two charter members expressed a keen desire to keep playing, it was my pleasure to send out an invitation to all our community members and their response was a unanimous ‘let’s play.’ Consequently, this fall represents the first time in the history of the Newberry Chamber Orchestra, founded in 2013, that we have an exclusive ‘community arm,’ meeting separately from our Newberry College student membership,” said Music Director Dr. Patrick Casey.
After nearly two months of separate operations, this group of community performers is now ready to play for the public — outdoors while the autumn weather still permits. Saturday morning, October 24, 10:30 a.m., on the perimeter of the Grow Newberry Farmers Market (hosted by the Newberry County Chamber of Commerce), by the Newberry Opera House awning, the orchestra will perform — socially distanced, with masks.
The group will perform a variety of classic works, with a bit of fiddlin’ thrown in as well.
Community members include: flute: Kathrin Kucharski; bassoon: Kevin Dove; violin: Alice Ramirez, Margaret Gerstung, Noah Brandon, Van Price, Karen Rambo, Elamon Barrett, Elizabeth McCoy, Sophia Davis and Evelyn Sheppard; viola: Jan Redden and Bobbie Wagner; cello: Luke Davis; contrabass: Rich Ritter.