2021 MDSO Fall Season
Labor Day Pops
September 6, 2021
The Star-Spangled Banner
John Williams: Olympic Fanfare and Theme
Calvin Custer: Duke Ellington!
Aaron Copland: Corral Nocturne from Rodeo
Aaron Copland: Saturday Night Waltz from Rodeo
Arr. Whitney: The LORD OF THE RINGS: The Fellowship of the Ring, Symphonic Suite
Ted Ricketts: Pirates of the Caribbean
Calvin Custer: The Phantom of the Opera Overture
Robert Lowden: Armed Forces Salute
John Phillip Sousa: Stars and Stripes Forever
Opening Night – Eroica!
September 25, 2021
Celebrate the new season with a night of classic favorites. The MDSO will feature Chung-Ha Kim, pianist and faculty member at Millikin University in Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 9 in E-flat major "Jenamy” followed by an exhilarating performance of Beethoven’s “Eroica” Symphony No.3.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 9 in E-flat major, K. 271, "Jenamy"
Chung-Ha Kim, piano
Ludwig Van Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 in Eb, Op. 55 "Eroica"
“Bach to Bartók”
October 23, 2021
Enjoy an evening of fan favorites as we go “Bach to Bartók”. Featuring the famous “Air on the G string”, Bach’s Orchestral Suite No.2 is a majestic “tour de force” showcasing the MDSO’s virtuoso performers on trumpets and oboes. We will conclude the evening with Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta. Béla Bartók, a twentieth-century Hungarian composer, wrote this piece (which includes folk music and a fugue) for the tenth anniversary of the chamber orchestra, Basler Kammerorchester. Along with antiphonal writing, the eerie dissonances of Bartok’s “night music” style will leave you mesmerized and exhilarated all at the same time.
Johann Sebastian Bach: Orchestral Suite No. 2 in b, BWV 1067
Johann Sebastian Bach: Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D, BWV 1068
Craig Mason, guest conductor
Béla Bartók: Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta
Musical Theatre Production
NOV 12-14 [FRI/SAT at 7:30pm, SUN at 2:00pm]
“Considered by many to be the most charming musical ever written, She Loves Me is a warm romantic comedy with an endearing innocence and a touch of old-world elegance” according to Music Theatre International. Don’t miss the return of musical theatre to the MDSO season as we partner with the Millikin School of Theatre and Dance in a production of this Tony Award winning romantic comedy.
Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick: She Loves Me
Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra
The Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra is an ensemble comprised of faculty, hired professionals, and is open to students who successfully audition for the Millikin University School of Music. The MDSO performs an annual Labor-Day Pops Concert, 5 Masterworks Concerts, Advent Services, and hosts high-profile guest artists and concerto/aria competition. Selected students also have the opportunity to play for Musical Theatre productions and various community and educational events. Membership in MDSO places a high demand on students who gain hands-on experience by playing side-by-side with faculty and other professionals in a nurturing environment.
Millikin Chamber Orchestra
Millikin Chamber Orchestra is primarily a student ensemble and is dedicated to providing high-quality training through exposure to an immense body of orchestral literature. Rehearsals are MW (7:15-9:45 p.m.) and membership is open to all Millikin students through audition. There are no restrictions on those playing a string instrument, but those playing wind, brass, and percussion, must be recommended by studio teachers.
Fall 2021 String Placement Audition Excerpts
Sunday, August 22, 1-4 pm, PMC Kaeuper Hall
William McClain, Music Director and Conductor
firstname.lastname@example.org | (217) 424-3774
Ion-Alexandru Malaimare, Violin
| (217) 424-6302
Sharon Chung, Viola
email@example.com | (217) 424-6307
Amy Catron, Cello
firstname.lastname@example.org | (217) 424-3522
Guilherme Zilz, Double Bass
email@example.com | (217) 424-3535
The Amati String Scholarship
The Amati String Scholarship offered to School of Music students covers up to full tuition for exceptionally talented string students. For more information, contact School of Music Audition Coordinator, Kimberly Dial (firstname.lastname@example.org).
How can I get into the Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra and Millikin Chamber Orchestra?
If you audition successfully for the Millikin University School of Music on violin, viola, cello, or orchestral bass, you will automatically become part of the orchestra program. No further audition is necessary.
What if I play a wind or percussion instrument?
If you are a music major or minor on a woodwind or brass instrument, your required major ensemble will always be the Concert Band or Symphonic Wind Ensemble. However, you may also play in the orchestra upon placement by your studio teacher. Percussionists rotate between Band, Wind Ensemble, and Orchestra.
What if I won’t be majoring in an orchestral instrument, but I’d like to keep up my playing?
If your primary medium is voice, piano, guitar, or some other non-orchestral instrument, you may still be able to play in the orchestra as an elective. Violinists, violists, cellists, and bassists play an audition for the conductor. If you play woodwind, brass, or percussion, you must be placed by the studio teacher.
What if I’m not going to major in music at all?
All Millikin students are eligible to audition for the orchestra on string instruments. Wind, brass, and percussion players must be placed by the performance faculty.
Is financial aid available for playing in orchestra if it’s not my major instrument?
If you play an orchestral instrument, we encourage you to schedule an audition for the School of Music, regardless of your intended major. Talent awards for ongoing and successful contributions to Millikin’s instrumental ensembles are available to all students.
Is the orchestra open to community players?
Per-service positions are available to qualified freelance musicians. Contact Dr. William McClain to schedule an audition.
What works have been performed by the Orchestra recently?
Knoxville, Summer of 1915
The Orchestra was created by the convergence of an established community orchestra with the Millikin University Orchestra in the early 1920’s. The scope of the Symphony’s services and activities were expanded in 1975 with the formation of the Symphony Guild of Decatur, a non-profit support organization representing the wider community. This partnership has allowed the MDSO to provide an ever-expanding galaxy of cultural benefits to central Illinois in the last quarter century, including symphony concerts, the co-sponsorship of the Decatur Youth Orchestra, youth scholarships for private lessons and summer music camps, in-school programs, a competition for University soloists, clinics, workshops, master classes with guest artists, and partnerships with the music programs at area schools. For the first two decades of this period, the orchestra was conducted by the successive Deans of the Millikin University School of Music, Ronald Gregory and Wesley Tower.
An important new stage of growth began in 1996 with the creation of a full-time position for a professional Music Director and Conductor, a position that was filled with the appointment of Dr. Michael Luxner. Since that time, the orchestra has converted from a college-community model to a fully auditioned professional model. Working conditions, pay scale, rehearsal schedules, travel allowances, and repertoire are now on a par with other professional ensembles in the region, and the orchestra’s student members are trained in a professional environment and standard of performance.
The MDSO is also intensely engaged in efforts to build new audiences and to raise the Orchestra’s profile in the wider community. Initiatives in this area include outreach concerts, media appearances, contract services, publications, speaking engagements, and new partnerships with underserved constituencies. Building on a venerable history and unique spirit of the town and gown cooperation, the Millikin-Decatur Symphony looks forward to a distinguished future of artistic achievement and community pride.