The Eastern Youth Orchestra’s free HeART of the City concert will be today at 3 p.m.
The Eastern Youth Orchestra’s free HeART of the City concert will be today at 3 p.m.

Archived Story

Eastern Youth Orchestra performs free concert

Published 3:42am Sunday, March 10, 2013

Washington Daily News

The Beaufort County Arts Council will present the Eastern Youth Orchestras in a special HeART of the City concert today at the Washington Civic Center. The concert will begin at 3 p.m. and is free to the public.
Conducted by C. Greg Hurley and John B. O’Brien, two distinguished professors of music at East Carolina University, the junior and senior orchestras will play selections by classical and contemporary composers.
The preparatory orchestra, conducted by Wendy Bissinger and composed of young performers from grades 4 to 7, will also perform.
The Eastern Youth Orchestra was established more than 25 years ago, said Joey Toler, director of the Beaufort County Arts Council.
“The orchestra was established to enrich the education of dedicated young musicians in Eastern North Carolina, many of whom have no orchestra programs within their public school systems,” Toler said.
Kim Rogers grew up in Washington taking piano lessons and loved the idea of a youth orchestra.
“I think it’s wonderful because it’s a great way to get people involved in music,” she said. “Music has and always will be a part of my life. I have a great appreciation for people who play.”
The Washington High School teacher said students involved in the youth orchestra would benefit tremendously.
“I think music is a great outlet for young people. It gives people another way to express themselves,” Rogers said. “It takes discipline for people to want to succeed, especially for young people. It’s always a part of you and music is one of those lifelong talents. Football, you age out of, but you can continue to play music, even in your 90’s.”
A few years ago, an increase in interest prompted the formation of a junior orchestra, composed of string musicians.
The orchestras are composed of about 35 middle school and 45 high school musicians representing 10 eastern counties:  Bertie, Beaufort, Carteret, Craven, Greene, Nash, Northampton, Onslow, Pitt and Wilson.
In addition, the orchestras are participating in the American League of Symphony Orchestras Food Drive.
“The Eastern Youth Orchestras will be one of 218 orchestras participating nationwide, and are asking concertgoers to bring canned goods to the performance to help with this worthwhile project,” Toler said.
The Beaufort County Arts Council presents the Eastern Youth Orchestra concert with support from the City of Washington.
For additional information, contact the Beaufort County Arts Council at 252-946-2504 or email

Editor's Picks

Pay raise proposal leaves too many questions

On April 5, Gov. Pat McCrory announced his proposal for an average 5-percent pay raise for teachers, as well as larger bonuses across the board, ... Read more

Higher expectations required

It’s time to vote again. Today represents a monumental day in which all citizens can exercise their right to vote. Many don’t. Primaries often have ... Read more