I spent this past Saturday bidding a fond farewell to my PRYSM concerts, not just for the year, but forever!
PYO (Philadelphia Youth Orchestra) owns different branches such as, PRYSM - YA (Philadelphia Regional Youth String Music - Young Artists), PRYSM (Philadelphia Regional Youth String Music), and PYAO (Philadelphia Young Artists Orchestra).
On Saturday I played my last PRYSM concert. I won't be playing in PRYSM next year because I was concert mistress this year. I could stay in the orchestra for as long as I wanted, but, typically concert mistress doesn't stay for more than a year, unless of course you are concert mistress/master of a professional orchestra such as The Philadelphia Orchestra.
The next option for me is possibly auditioning for PYAO, but not this year. Next year maybe. I will be taking a year off from orchestra because of all of the fiddling events that I have planned.
The PRYSM concert is held at The Haverford School every year. It takes us about an hour to get there. Our conductor required us to be at the school by 1:30pm. The concert was to start at 3:00pm, we had to tune our instruments and warm up our fingers. Then we rehearsed almost the whole program and ate afterward. I enjoyed talking with my friends backstage before the concert started.
At about five minutes before the concert was to start, our conductor seated us in the audience to listen as PRYSM - YA performed. They sounded wonderful!
After PRYSM - YA finished, we joined them on stage for a side by side piece. We played Peter Warlock's Capriol Suite. It sounded great! I love doing side by side pieces with PRYSM - YA. They play very well!
After PRYSM - YA left the stage, we began to play our pieces: Mozart's Eine Kleine Nacht-Musik, Jean Sibelius' Andante Festivo and Leroy Anderson's Jazz Pizzicato as an encore! I thought it was our best concert of the year! All of the pieces where so beautiful and very fun to play!
I was very sad to say goodbye to PRYSM Orchestra. I've played in PRYSM for five years. The experience has broadened my understanding of classical music. I learned a lot about listening more carefully and playing with more precision. For instance, while playing my solos I have to listen to the whole orchestra as well as myself because if I mess up, it could very possibly mess them up, too. This differs from playing Irish music, because if I make a mistake, it is easier to cover up and just call it a "variation".
I will miss playing in PRYSM because it gave me a chance to play a different style of music with kids very close to my age. But, who knows - maybe I'll audition for PYAO in the future!