League

The Tulare County Symphony League is a significant monetary supporter of the Tulare County Symphony and assists them with many activities, fund raising and educational programs for young people. Symphony League members assist the Symphony Association during the annual Youth Concert series every October for elementary school students in Visalia, Tulare and Porterville. Students learn concert etiquette and basics of classical music. And very importantly, they can enjoy a concert conducted by Dr. Bruce Kiesling, music director of the Symphony.

The League finances several junior symphony programs: The Junior Strings, directed by Lisa Fritz, is a string orchestra made up of beginning students on the violin, viola, cello and bass instruments. The Junior Youth Symphony, directed by Jeff Fritz, is open to middle and high school students playing strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion. The League also funds an after-school strings program for second and third grade pupils at Roosevelt School in Tulare as well as a Junior Strings Orchestra at Crowley School in Visalia. The League has purchased violins and other equipment for students to use while they are in the program. All of the youth orchestras are under the advisement of Bruce Kiesling.

Additionally, the League holds annual auditions for students of violin, viola, cello, bass and harp and awards scholarships to promising musicians. The League hopes that in helping to offset the cost of private music lessons, those scholarship winners will be encouraged to continue developing the skill and passion necessary to become dedicated players of their instruments. Recipients participate in a recital at the end of the school year which is open to the public.

The League is also proud to fund the annual Lorraine Burtner Young Artist Competition for young musicians aged 20 or younger. They compete for a cash prize as well as the privilege to perform at a Showcase Recital and League functions. The winner may also be invited to perform their winning piece with the Tulare County Symphony at one of the annual Youth Concerts.

A special benefit of League membership is an opportunity to attend concert previews, held at the Visalia Country Club at 10:30 a.m. on the Friday prior to each concert. Bruce Kiesling gives updates and a preview of the pieces to be played at the concert. Usually the featured soloist also performs.

For more information or to join the League, contact Membership Chair Beth McAuliff at smcaulif@pacbell.net or (559) 732-1343.