Deals Episodes

Music Festival

You don't have to pay expensive symphony orchestra ticket prices to hear amazing music.

"What you'll hear with this orchestra is -- it's really a professional orchestra. It's just a young one. Everyone is really young compared to the average symphony orchestra," said music director Alan Austin.

Several universities across the country hold music festivals.

"It's kind of the rising stars of the classical music world. These students audition. We had about 400 students audition online and live to come to the festival. We chose about 90. We have students that come from 11 foreign countries and about 18 other states this year," said Austin, "These students are all on the cusp of their professional careers. Some of them are actually taking auditions for professional orchestras."

And the prices are very reasonable.

"We keep our ticket prices very nominal because we want people to come hear this group. It's so fine. And so for instance at a major symphony orchestra you could pay anywhere from $50 to $200 if you were in New York City for a seat to a symphony orchestra concert. Our seats are only $15," said Austin.

"The artistic directors of the music festival do that on purpose to encourage people to come listen to music and to be enriched by very talented young musicians," said Musician Joshua Vonderheid.

Joshua Vonderheid is a student at the Juilliard School in New York City. He says playing festivals provides a fresh approach.

"As an audience member you can really feel that musicians are very much into making their own statement with the music. Playing in festivals like this provides a really great opportunity to see what it would be like to have a professional career in a symphony," said Joshua.

"I like the feeling that when I'm playing - and especially for some people it's very touching. It's very nostalgic. I want to share my feeling with an audience," said musician Xia Wong.

"They have a different program every week, a different conductor, different music. They learn as much music in a month as they would have learned in a whole year in their prospective schools," said Austin.

A challenging month for musicians - with amazing results for the audience.

"You have some of the best professional and semi professional musicians that are coming from all over the country," said audience member Clark Gibbs, "This is really affordable and you are going to get an extremely well prepared performance and more bang for the buck."

"It gives a student like myself to experience my level of playing and get a feel for what's going on the music scene today," said student, Ray Gonzalez.

"My favorite thing about it is, they are young performers," said audience member, Rolando Cruz, "They are international. They are from many countries so you get this melting pot of performers that's really interesting to see how well they play together for being together for such a short period of time. It's fascinating. It's a great price, 15 bucks for a ticket."

"What you'll hear is the next generation of rising stars in the classical music world," said Austin, "It's very exciting to watch talent grow and develop and watch these students before they become famous."

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