What is Orchestra?

The Orchestra is a musical performing group made up of the instruments of the string family; these are the violin, viola, cello and double bass.

The Violin

The violin is the highest sounding string instrument and is held on the left shoulder under the chin.

The Viola

The viola is slightly larger than the violin and is tuned lower in pitch. It has a medium-high sound with a mellow tone quality. It is also held on the left shoulder under the chin.

The Cello

The cello has a medium-low sound with a deep, rich tone quality. It is played while seated and is held in an upright position between the knees with the end pin resting on the floor.

The Double Bass

The bass is the largest string instrument and has a very low sound. Because of its size, one must sit on a tall stool or stand while playing it. The instrument is held in an upright position with the end pin resting on the floor.

What does the Orchestra do?

Orchestra members participate in a variety of activities. In addition to Orchestra class each school day, students take part in three or four evening concerts during the school year. Solo and ensemble festival each winter provides individuals and small groups the opportunity to perform, along with hundreds of students from other schools, and to be evaluated by professional judges. Later, in middle school and high school, the orchestra goes to more competitions as a full group, goes on field trips, and even travels to other states to perform. The High School Orchestra’s most recent trips have been to Washington D.C., Tennessee, and Orlando, Florida.

What are the benefits of being in Orchestra?

There are many incentives for students who are actively involved in the Orchestra Program. The students will say that they most enjoy the opportunities to perform and compete, and when they enter the High School program they enjoy traveling, as well. In addition, there are various social events scheduled throughout the year to help initiate friendships and create a sense of team spirit. However, the “higher purpose” of participating in Highland’s Orchestra Program is to provide your children the opportunity to discover and enrich themselves in a way no other class can provide. There is even the possibility of discovering genuine talent that may lead to a professional career!