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Fifth grade enjoys special concert

JSO on the Go!The power of music is undeniable and its impact could be seen, heard and felt at a recent presentation at MAES.

Fifth grade students welcomed members of the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra (JSO) on Feb. 24 for a JSO on the Go! presentation. 

Johnstown Symphony Orchestra’s educational ensembles, JSO On The Go!, offer mentorship and encouragement to students throughout the school year. Quintets visit area schools to support and enrich music education through small chamber performances. 

Students not only have the unique opportunity to see and hear talented musicians, they also had a chance to “meet the instruments.” The JSO quintet engaged students in demonstrations showcasing a variety of musical concepts. This is often the first time students have seen or heard many of the instruments in a live performance.  

According to Mrs. Amanda McNelly, fifth grade students were enthralled by the 60-minute private performance and enjoyed listening to six different pieces of music. 


Before each song, a member of the orchestra would share fun facts about the pieces or demonstrate their instruments.  They demonstrated a variety of different tools and techniques they utilize for each type of music,” she explained.


McNelly said the presentation was informative and fun, as musicians interacted with the small group of students directly, fielding their questions and sharing their vast knowledge and musical experiences. Students were even given a chance to hold the instruments, including a tuba!


“You could certainly feel their passion for music and their specific instruments,” she explained. 


Students were excited by the visit and the performance.


"I enjoyed listening to the different music pieces.  The members of the symphony were so good about answering all the students' questions," explained Ava Steinberg.


Parker Biuttinger said he enjoyed the opportunity to learn about different instruments.


"I was really thankful that the quintet orchestra members traveled from Johnstown, Indiana, and even further. It was fun to learn about their instruments.”



Keith Eisensmith, quintet leader, said the group visits approximately 12 schools each year and the Meyersdale students demonstrated great enthusiasm and interest in the group’s performance and presentation. 


“Our primary goal is to support the music programs at the schools we visit.  We introduce musical instruments, in our case, the brass instruments.  We have other groups that introduce the woodwind and the string instruments. We teach musical concepts and we try to do it in a way that's fun for the students,” Eisensmith explained. “We hope they will consider playing instruments themselves!”


Based on the response of students, the impact of the JSO may be seen and most importantly, heard, for years to come!


"I just want to thank the Johnstown Symphony for visiting the Meyersdale 5th Graders.  It was a fun afternoon," concluded Mylie Trowbridge.