Orchestra concert just ahead

Published 8:42 am Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Staff Writer

Everything from the seasonal warmth of illuminated Christmas trees to an homage to Washington will be evoked in a concert planned by the Beaufort County Community Orchestra.
The concert is scheduled to take place at 7 p.m. Dec. 17 at First Baptist Church in Washington.
On the program are traditional Christmas melodies, such as “White Christmas,” and classical works, including Antonio Vivaldi’s “L’Inferno,” said Robin Potts, secretary for and a violinist with the orchestra.
Conductor and violinist Chris Ellis will solo on the Vivaldi number, Potts related.
“That is the fanciest thing I’ve ever played in my life,” she added.
In addition, the orchestra will accompany vocalist Charles Smith as he sings “There’s a Little Town on the Pamlico,” an original tune by local songwriter Sylvia Evans.
Evans said she has written perhaps 15 songs, but this one is her favorite.
“It was just a matter of heart,” she said. “I love this place and I just sat down one day and said, ‘I think I’ll try and think of something to talk about it.’ I never had a problem with any of it, it just came right out.”
The song’s lyrics evoke images of Washington through allusions to tall church steeples, sailboats, “lazy creeks,” great herons and other sights familiar to the city’s inhabitants.
Smith said he will vocalize on Evans’ song and another piece, “I Wonder as I Wander.”
Smith, a retired Methodist minister, has sung at happenings as diverse as Duke University football games and Gilbert and Sullivan troupe presentations.
“It’s been a wonderful avocation for me, and I still get to sing,” he said.
Also during the event, ballerina Rebecca Omonde will dance to a selection from “The Nutcracker” by Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky.
Rebecca Omonde is the daughter of Lois Omonde, the orchestra’s concert mistress.
The younger Omonde has been taking ballet classes for years, said Janet Cox, her instructor.
“She’s a very dedicated little ballerina,” said Cox. “She has beautiful dance lines, her memorization skills are excellent.”
Asked whether it’s unique to have one of her students participate in a concert event as opposed to a recital, Cox replied, “I’m so thrilled. I’m so tickled when anyone that takes dance gets a chance to use it in their lives in other ways.”
The community orchestra is sponsored partly by a grant from the North Carolina Arts Council, distributed by the Beaufort County Arts Council.