Your county youth orchestra needs you!

Are you an aspiring musician aged 12 – 15? If so, then the Roscommon County Youth Orchestra needs your time and talents!             This week Roscommon County Council Arts Service in partnership with Roscommon VEC announced the launch of Roscommon County Youth Orchestra. This project offers young aspiring musicians between the ages of 12 and 15 years the opportunity to avail of instrumental tuition at an affordable cost and to become part of the first countywide Youth Orchestra.             The inclusion of people from all over the county is being promoted and the orchestra is divided into four sections, woodwind, brass, strings and percussion. Four ensembles will be established in different locations around the county, meeting together at intervals to form the larger Roscommon County Youth Orchestra.             The idea of dividing the orchestra in this manner is to extend orchestral tuition throughout the county. However prospective students may attend any of the four centres throughout the county irrespective of where they live. The first two branches of the orchestra will commence in April this year, a third later in the year and a fourth early in 2008.             This scheme also offers students an instrument loan service so that the expense of buying an instrument will not prevent prospective students from joining. This will be particularly helpful for beginners who are unsure of which instrument they would like to play. When students move on to more professional instruments, we will provide a subsidised hire-purchase facility so that students can own their own instrument.             The first branch of Roscommon Youth Orchestra will be based in the Abbey Community College in Boyle, where students can go to learn a woodwind instrument. They will be able to avail of paired tuition and become part of the woodwind ensemble.             The brass section will open in Castlerea later this month. Students there can choose to take tuition in a brass instrument and join the brass ensemble. This may be of particular interest to students who are already or would like to be members of the Castlerea Brass and Reed Band so they can experience two genres of brass playing.             An important aspect of Roscommon County Youth Orchestra is the involvement of parents of the students, whom we rely on to provide a supervisory role one week in six. While it’s not a huge commitment, it’s vital to us to ensure the smooth running of the workshops whilst also offering the opportunity for parents to be more involved with their children’s extra curricular interests.             We are now actively recruiting students for these two ensembles. Initially, we are recruiting 12 – 15 year old students and beginners are welcome. Places are very limited and are allotted on a first come first served basis.             For more information or if you would like to join, please contact Avril Carr, Arts Education and Development Officer, Roscommon County Arts Service, Roscommon West Business Park, Circular Road, Roscommon. T. (090) 66 32541 email