by Amy Doeun
For over 25 years, music lovers living in the St. Croix Valley have had a great opportunity to enjoy music right in their own backyard.
The St. Croix Valley Orchestra is a volunteer orchestra consisting of musicians in both Wisconsin and Minnesota. The orchestra was started in 1991. Its original director, Randolph Elliot, recently retired. Adam Beaver, of Rice Lake, is the current musical director. He teaches band at Rice Lake Middle School.
As the musical director, he is in charge of selecting the music and conducting. Each year, they have a three-concert series: fall, spring and summer. On Nov. 19 and 20, the orchestra will present its fall series.
“We try to do a concert on each side of the river,” Beaver told the Post Review. The concerts are free and open to the public. A donation is appreciated.
Between 40 and 60 people make up this community organization. The composition of the orchestra is forever changing. There are four main parts of an orchestra: percussion, wind, brass and string.
“We are always looking for new members, especially in string,” Beaver said. Anyone interested in joining the orchestra can email [email protected]
Practice is held once a week at the St. Croix Valley High School.
“All the members of the orchestra are volunteers,” Beaver said. “There are some members that are semi-pro, but they are still participating in a community sense.”
Because the instrumentation of the orchestra is always changing, Beaver said that is the main concern when he is picking out pieces.
“What fits our group the best?” he said is a question he’s regularly thinking about. “Then I always try to pick a classical piece like Mozart or Bach — something that would educate. We also like to pick out popular music to relate to the public.”
On the Monday before their concert series, Beaver said they do a pre-concert at the Point Pleasant Assisted Living Facility in Lindstrom.
Upcoming concerts include:
–7 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 19, at Fristad Lutheran Church, Centuria, Wisconsin.
–3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Lindstrom.
–3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 27, at Methodist Church, Taylors Falls.