About Us

The Mason Orchestral Society is made up of three different orchestras, the Mason Symphony, the Mason Philharmonic and the Mason Chamber Orchestra. Each of these orchestras allows for musicians of any experience level to play, learn to play, or further hone their music skills. We are made up of musicians from the mid-Michigan area and welcome anyone who is looking for an orchestral ensemble! Please contact either of the directors for more information.

 

Membership Policy

Everyone who participates in an orchestra should pay a supporting membership fee of $50 (No fee will be assessed for students in the Mason Philharmonic). If more than one member of a family participates, the family membership fee is $60. The participants are the ones who benefit most, and the above fees are extremely reasonable when we consider the experience and qualifications of our conductors.

Something For Everyone

The Mason Orchestral Society offers musical experiences for:

1. The musician (amateur or professional).

2. The student (regardless of age) who wishes to learn to play an instrument.

3. The individual who enjoys good music and/or wishes to serve or support a worthy community program.

History

The Mason Orchestral Society was organized in 1975 and performed its first concert in June 1976 under the direction of Sandy Gerrish. There were about 16 members in the first orchestra and ages ranged from 7-77. The combined orchestras now have more than 60 members.

The Society is a non-profit organization which brings the enjoyment and teaching of orchestral music to Mason and surrounding communities. We meet weekly throughout the concert season in the Mason Middle School band room, and often hold our concerts in Mason First Church of the Nazarene, South Lansing Christian Church and the Mason High School auditorium.

With the financial support of the community, the Society has been able to, 1) organize two community orchestras involving both student and adult musicians, 2) operate a string lesson program for all ages, 3) accumulate and maintain string instruments for beginning students, 4) provide needed scholarship funds for string lessons, and 5) provide scholarship funds to students enabling them to pursue other musical endeavors such as private lessons or music camp.

The Ingham County News editorial (May 4, 1977) headline "Congratulations" to the Mason Orchestral Society and directing it to "... keep up the good work" explains the Mason Orchestral Society's year of 1977. Members, students, parents, teachers and orchestra director, resident agent, officers and the community are all to be congratulated for the good work done in 1977. Also all are to be congratulated for the direction and projection into the year 1978.

This congratulatory editorial came after the Orchestra's May Day Concert. It read in part "The society performed to a full house at All Saints Lutheran Church. For those who attended, it was a delightful afternoon, a wonderful way to usher in the month of May. It was a pleasure to see young and old work together to produce beautiful music." Sandra Gerrish conducted the concert and the orchestra performed in spite of several unrehearsed events. Two babies arrived early, placing the Society's teacher, Karen O'Brien and violinist Alane Johnson, on the sideline. The night before the concert, Judy Campbell fell and broke her arm as she was leaving the last rehearsal. Bev Dean was called upon to take her place accompanying the orchestra on the piano.


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