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Young soloists performing with Yuba-Sutter Symphony
WHAT: Yuba-Sutter Symphony's Young Artist Showcase concert featuring youth soloists and the Yuba-Sutter Youth Symphony.
WHEN: 7 p.m. Saturday.
WHERE: St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 1390 Franklin Road, Yuba City.
Corey Kersting recognizes and embraces the importance of highlighting young musicians in Yuba-Sutter.
The Yuba-Sutter Symphony conductor started playing violin with the group in high school and was featured as a soloist during the Yuba-Sutter Oratorio Society's Young Artist Showcase.
"It was a very big honor to be able to play with an adult orchestra," he said, remembering the importance of others affirming his work with a chance to perform.
Kersting is now passing that message on to today's youth, working with four soloists during the past month for Saturday's rendition of the showcase at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church in Yuba City.
The symphony, he said, is excited to work with Kevin Swenson, conductor; Beth Hastey, alto; Brennah Kemmerly, mezzo-soprano; and Lupita Ramos, oboe.
To earn the solo position, the students had to audition in front of judges in December.
Swenson marks the first time a student soloist will conduct, rather than play, a piece composed for the Young Artist Showcase, Kersting said.
The Yuba City High School junior has played trumpet with the adult symphony for about 21⁄2 years and said "Fireflies" came to him as he was playing the piano one day.
"This melody kind of popped into my head, and I had to write it down," Swenson said.
He said he isn't particularly nervous to conduct his piece in front of a full orchestra, saying he was very proud of the piece, but he would not label or compare the composition to other works.
With interests running from music to literature, Swenson is unsure if a melody-filled career lies ahead.
Fellow Honkers junior Beth Hastey immerses herself in everything singing.
She found herself juggling her Young Artist Showcase solo and a key role as Betty Rizzo during rehearsal for the school's production of "Grease" on a recent Wednesday night.
"I grew up around music," she said. "I always want music incorporated into my life."
Hastey will perform "Voi che sapete" from "The Marriage of Figaro" — having previously sung solos during the symphony's Christmastime "Messiah" concert.
With her mother and one of her grandparents having been music teachers, she said a career in music education is something she is considering.
From one classic piece to another, Marysville High School senior Brennah Kemmerly will sing "Che faro senza Euridice" from "Orfeo ed Euridice" Saturday night.
Kemmerly is pursuing opera and said she has received positive feedback from auditions at University of Pacific Conservatory of Music and Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont.
From reading Opera News magazine to watching live performances on the big screen, Kemmerly said she can't remember a time when she wasn't singing.
"I used to sing the theme song to 'Titanic,'" she said, smiling as she remembered running up to the edge of the living room table and spreading her arms out into the air.
Rounding out the soloist group is Colusa High's Lupita Ramos, an oboist who also showcased her talents at least year's concert.
She has won numerous gold medals at the California Solo Ensemble Music Festival in Sacramento and recently returned from her second performance at Carnegie Hall in New York, Colusa High band and choir director Michael Phenicie said.
CONTACT Andrew Cummins at firstname.lastname@example.org or 749-4779.
Youth orchestra will also perform with adults
In addition to Saturday's soloists, about 25 to 30 members of the Yuba-Sutter Youth Symphony will play several pieces with the adult orchestra, conductor Corey Kersting said.
Kersting said he encourages the older and younger musicians to interact and get to know one another during rehearsals, discussing topics like when they started playing and what some of their favorite pieces are.
For the students, he said, it presents a chance to "see what they can look forward to if they continue on their instrument."
— Andrew Cummins