Ohio All-Star Honor Orchestra


The Ohio All-Star Honors Orchestra is a competitive virtual orchestra program of the finest high school musicians from the state of Ohio. This collaboration between the Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music and the BW Community Arts School exists to support Ohio school music programs by providing additional musical opportunities that are designed to supplement school ensemble activities. Students selected for this orchestra engage in lessons, masterclasses, lectures, and workshops from internationally renowned artists, and will culminate in a professionally produced virtual orchestra performance.     

In the Q&A below, senior music education major and All-Star student intern, Julia Morreale, interviews artistic director and conductor, Dr. Soo Han and music education professor, Dr. David Pope.

As virtual music-making increased in necessity and popularity, Han saw the need and desire for high-school orchestral musicians to come together. He said, “I saw that All-State festivals, regional festivals, concerts…essentially everything was being canceled for high-school students across the country, and I know how invaluable those experiences are for students of that age. I really felt the responsibility to try and help out in any way I could.” Therefore, he invited students throughout Ohio to audition for and participate in the Ohio All-Star Honors Orchestra program. In this program, orchestra members attend rehearsals, discussions about musical topics, sectionals, and program activities. These activities range from conducting and composition to career options in music.

Pope led a special topic seminar focused on exploring musical careers and seeking a different musical route than teaching or performing. He advised the students to, “use any breaks you can to get involved. Experience as early as high school can contribute to your later career. Get as many experiences as you can and see if it's something you like. More doors will open the more times you volunteer.” He also reminded students that “very few people know exactly what they want to do when they’re 18. Be open to possibilities and change.”

The end result for the orchestra will be a “Brady Bunch-style” virtual orchestra. Repertoire includes Mozart’s Overture to The Magic Flute and Piazzolla’s Libertango. Musicians have been working hard in rehearsals and submitting recordings to produce an impressive final product. Look for a video to come in late January 2021!

Story and Q&A written by Julia Morreale '21, All-Star student intern
Major: Music Education



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