The Little Orchestra Society of New York Starts a New Season on Their 75th Anniversary
by Elena Frigenti
Can classical music appeal to kids even today, when children seem to exclusively belong to the “smart generation”? The answer is yes, especially when the concert incorporates mixed media and animation, and calls the audience to actively participate in the show. The Little Orchestra Society, also known as L.O.S., has been doing a great job for decades, attracting generations of young New Yorkers simply introducing them to quality music – when not inspiring to pursue music studies themselves. It’s exactly 75 years that L.O.S. is one of the most valued cultural institutions in New York City, and they are going to celebrate the anniversary in the best way possible: with a comeback on the stage for a new season, starting at the end of January.
Tchaikovsky, Vivaldi, the Opera, Duke Ellington, and George Gershwin: the young audience will be led through a universe of amazing sounds, each one reflecting a different artistic and social context, but all made attractive to the little ones thanks to the energy and the ability of conductor David Alan Miller, along with his professional orchestra. Each concert is a one-of-a-kind sensorial experience that mixes music with theater, dance with videos, and original scripts: the result is showing kids how music not only entertains but also sparks creativity, adds meaning and purpose in life, and builds long-lasting personal skills.
Besides the anniversary, though, The Little Orchestra Society this time also plays a different note. “The season before us is a special one, and not only for our 75th birthday” underlines the new Executive Director Anthony Ball. “Last summer we lost our dear Joanne Bernstein-Cohen, who has been our Executive Director for 15 years. This coming season is a tribute to her. Joanne made L.O.S. ‘An Orchestra for all New Yorkers,’ and we will honor her legacy of inspiring children in the classroom and welcoming the newest audiences to the concert hall.” Ms. Bernstein-Cohen widely expanded the name of the Orchestra, taking the work of the Orchestra beyond the concert hall, right into classrooms at public schools and community spaces, and directly into the hands of young people.
The season will start with “Vivaldi’s Virtuosas!” (Saturday, March 5 and Sunday, March 6, 11:30 am and 1 pm), “Treblemaker: The Opera!”) (Saturday, April 2 and Sunday, April 3, 11:30 am and 1 pm), to close with “Ellington & Gershwin: Rhapsodies in Jazz!” (Saturday, May 14 and Sunday, May 15, 11:30 am and 1 pm). All the concerts will be held at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College (695 Park Avenue, NYC) apart from the last one, which will take place at The Kaufmann Concert Hall (1395 Lexington Avenue, NYC). Details and tickets for a single performance or the whole season at littleorchestra.org/concerts