D.C. Youth Orchestra convenes outdoors for first in-person rehearsal since 2020

Posted on: April 1, 2021

A group of D.C. Youth Orchestra students gathered for their first in-person rehearsal since March 2020. Photo by Jenny Gathright

“On his way to The Fields at RFK Campus on Saturday, Evan Ross Solomon was thinking about a single musical note: an A,” writes Jenny Gathright in Wednesday’s (3/31) DCist (Washington, D.C.). “Ross Solomon, the artistic director and a principal conductor of the D.C. Youth Orchestra, was getting ready to lead his first in-person rehearsal in more than a year…. Saturday was a momentous step forward: The group held an in-person, outdoor rehearsal with a group of about 20 students, mostly high schoolers…. It felt like a fairly routine rehearsal—apart from the health precautions the orchestra put into place…. ‘When the kids first started, they were shy and a little bit inside themselves, which is not surprising given the year that we’ve all had,’ said Liz Schurgin, the DC Youth Orchestra Program’s Executive Director. ‘As the music went on, they began to open up—and I could feel it.’ … ‘I’m really, really excited,’ said 18-year-old [cellist] Nailah Harris… Harris said even though the group had been rehearsing the music on their own for months, putting it together in person felt different. ‘I’m hoping this step can help people come together and play music again.’ ”