Elgin, IL — Guests at Springboard 2018 were treated to live chamber music, excellent food, and the chance to learn about, and support, Elgin Youth Symphony Orchestra (EYSO) at its annual gala on Saturday, April 14th at Elgin Country Club.
Guests were greeted with music by an EYSO harpist, and music by Hanson String Quartet served as backdrop for cocktails and a silent auction. Following cocktail hour, Artistic Director Randal Swiggum introduced a feature performance by Earl Clemens Wind Quintet (CQ). In addition to the performance, CQ members and Mr. Swiggum demonstrated for guests how EYSO students and faculty together explore ideas and learn to be “expert noticers”.
Swiggum then introduced two EYSO alumni who shared their perspectives on how having been a part of EYSO is positively impacting their lives today. Nina Hermes (oboe, class of 2013), a case manager and employment specialist with Agence Ometz, traveled from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, to share her story. Pal Shah (bass, class of 2016) lives in Chicago and is working on a career in neuroscience.
“Student musicians at EYSO aren’t just studying music,” said K. Eric Larson, executive director, “they are preparing themselves for a life of inquiry, creativity and growth through the study and performance of music.”
Springboard 2018 was sponsored in part by a generous donation from CNA, an insurance provider specializing in insurance needs in construction, manufacturing, technology, healthcare, professional services, financial institutions and small business. Additional support was provided by Hutter Enterprises, Inc., Smitherman & Associates, Inc., Elgin Country Club, Hydrox Laboratories, 79 Ratio, and Haines & Associates LLC.
EYSO serves nearly 400 students from 70 Chicagoland communities and has a national reputation for providing students with an engaging musical experience and a comprehensive learning environment of curiosity, imagination, critical thinking, and collaboration. Students explore a thematic curriculum each season – one which helps students develop artistically and technically, and prepare them for a future of complex ideas, creative risk-taking, and leadership as global citizen. This approach has led hundreds of alumni to successful careers as professional musicians, educators, and strong leaders in every field.