Fort Hays State University's Western Kansas String Academy is accepting new students for its spring season, which will begin Saturday, Jan. 14, at Malloy Hall on the FHSU campus.
The Saturday morning academy consists of four different youth orchestras -- pre-orchestra, beginner, intermediate and advanced -- for string players of all ages and abilities. A new group guitar class taught by local guitarist Luke Johnson is also starting this semester.
Students as young as 5 years old or who have never played an instrument are eligible to join the academy's pre-orchestra class, which is taught by a Suzuki-certified instructor.
Each week includes an orchestra-guitar rehearsal followed by music appreciation classes or chamber ensembles, depending on the student's ability and interests. Individual private lessons, which are required of all academy students, can be arranged through WKSA instructors or independently with local private teachers. Each ensemble has an end-of-semester concert at Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center in Sheridan Hall on the FHSU campus.
Special activities are planned for this coming semester.
In March, WKSA students will travel to Denver, stopping along the way to perform in communities on Interstate 70, to attend a Colorado Symphony Orchestra concert and to tour a variety of Denver attractions.
A solo competition in February will feature six WKSA students performing solos with the advanced orchestra in a special Saturday morning recital.
Students in the Music Appreciation class will write, compose, design and perform their own modern opera this semester as part of the Mini-Opera Project.
A Pajama Concert-Story Hour at the library, a performance at the Mall's Kids' Fest, and the Gallery Walk in April are tentatively scheduled.
Enrollment is open to all interested players, ages 5 years and older, throughout the western Kansas region. Group guitar class enrollment is open to 4th-grade students and older.
For a WKSA information packet and audition information, interested students or parents can contact Acting Director Cathy Drabkin at (785) 623-4187 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Assistant Director Lianne Zwenger at (785) 625-6164 or email@example.com, or visit the WKSA web site at www.fhsu.edu/wksa.