Community orchestra fills Horner Auditorium with classics and standards

See why the East County Community Orchestra is filling up the auditorium when they perform. No, you can’t hear their music here, but you’ll learn all about their most recent show …

The 70 members of the East County Community Orchestra offer another concert of classic and standard tunes at their semiannual concert at David Douglas High School.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
The East County Community Orchestra punctuated its 32nd season with its Spring Concert at the Howard Horner Performance Arts Center at David Douglas High School.

“Members of this orchestra are both amateur and professional musicians from the greater Portland area,” reported their director, Jack Mahoney. “We play because we enjoy performing the music for our own pleasure, and for that of our audiences, both at this theater, and at other venues around the area throughout the year.”

Under the baton of Director Jack Mahoney, the orchestra starts the program with a rousing march.

As always, the program began with The Star Spangled Banner, and followed by Florentiner “Grande Marcia Italia” and Espana Canti.  Next, they played a lovely arrangement of  the “Wizard of Oz” standard, Over The Rainbow.

Moving to the classics, the orchestra favored the audience with Rienzi Overture and Achieved Is The Glorious Work from Creation by Franz Joseph Hayden. They finished the first half of the evening with an energetic presentation of a “James Bond Medley” – featuring The James Bond Theme, For Your Eyes Only, Goldfinger, Live and Let Die, and Nobody Does It Better.

At intermission, guests and musicians enjoy a buffet of cookies and beverages – all provided by the families of the orchestra members.

The second half of the concert began with Henry Mancini’s haunting movie title theme, Charade. This was followed by the lively Minuteman March and the mellow The Shadow of Your Smile.

Moving to show tunes, the orchestra gave a “Salute to the Cinema” with a medley of Hooray for Hollywood, Singin’ in the Rain, Over The Rainbow, As Time Goes By, and A Day in the Life of a Fool. Then, they entertained with the ballad from the stage show and film, “Evita”, Don’t Cry For Me Argentina, by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

To wrap up the show, Sir Arthur Sullivan’s Fanfare and March from “Iolanthe” left folks tapping their toes.

French horn artists Carla Johnson, Marcia Parker, and Julie Wnuk add a satin-smooth brass sound to the music.

The orchestra’s next performance at the Horner Performance Arts Center will be on Friday, December 17.

The East County Community Orchestra is a nonprofit organization that welcomes donations to help defray its operating costs. The concerts are offered without charge, but donations are graciously accepted in the lobby.

Plan to come to the next free East County Community Orchestra concert in December – or look for their concerts presented at various locations in the community.

© 2010 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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