Players of stringed instruments offered summertime orchestra


CHRIS GOSPER OFTEN heard fellow musicians complain that there were no opportunities to perfect and perform their music during the summer, when many local orchestras take a break.

The principal violist with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra figured either she could join in complaining or do something about it. She did something about it. She started a summer string orchestra in Glen Burnie.

"I told them, 'You're griping, so here, I'll give you something to do,' " Gosper recalled.

Other musicians must have heard her message because rehearsals for the fourth annual Summer Strings Orchestra begin at 7: 30 p.m. Tuesday at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 308 Oak Manor Drive in Glen Burnie.

"When it started, I was expecting only a few people would show up, but the first year we had 25 [performers] and last year we had 30," noted Gosper, who is a longtime member of St. Paul's.

The orchestra offers adult string players of all skill levels the chance to practice, with rehearsals from 7: 30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesdays through Aug. 12. The group will conclude the summer with a concert Aug. 15 at the church.

Gosper has selected three pieces for the orchestra to perform: Josef Suk's "Serenade" for strings, Opus 6; flute concerto in G major by Carl Stamitz, with a guest soloist; and Percy Grainger's "Mock Morris" and "Irish Country Aire."

"I chose the music because I love it," Gosper explained. "When they hear the music, I hope they love it too."

Although membership is limited to violin, viola, cello and bass players, Gosper says many performers have asked her to open membership to other instrumentalists to turn the group into a full orchestra. That's an option she may entertain in the future, Gosper said. But for now, she is enjoying the opportunity to spotlight the strings.

"I'd like people to get to know and learn the string repertoire out there. No one gets a chance to hear it," she said.

Performers interested in joining the Summer String Orchestra can contact Gosper at 410-437-3581. A fee of $30 covers music and expenses.

Class of '38 reunion

Almost 60 years to the day after they graduated from Glen Burnie High School, alumni will meet for what has become an annual event, as the Class of '38 enjoys an afternoon of reminiscing and fun from 1 to 4 June 18 at Pasadena's Kurtz

Pleasure Beach.

Admission is $18 per person and includes dinner, music, dancing and games.

Reunion committee member Rose (Gischel) Schoenemann noted the class has scheduled a reunion every year since 1978. Over time, attendees have increased to include family members and alumni from other years.

Other members of the committee who will attend are Jim Sunstrom, Charles Kirby, Rusty Vasicek, Betsy (Giles) Zoller and Rose (Zamostny) Mason.

Ticket information: Schoenemann, 410-789-8634.

Basket bingo Sunday

Arthur Slade Regional Catholic School presents an afternoon of basket bingo Sunday -- with prizes of Longaberger baskets -- in the school multipurpose room, 120 Dorsey Road. Doors open at 12: 30 p.m. and games begin at 2 p.m.

Admission is $10 in advance, $12 at the door. Refreshments will be sold throughout the day. Proceeds will go to the school's general fund.

Information: 410-766-7130.

Flea market spaces

A limited number of spaces is available for a community flea market from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Mariner Health Center, 7355 Furnace Branch Road.

Spaces can be rented for $15 each.

Information: 410-766-3460.

Pub Date: 6/10/98

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