Elkhart Mayor Rod Roberson proclaims Feb. 5, 2023, as Elkhart County Symphony Day

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The Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra held this side-by-side youth concert for the last 15 years.
Published: Feb. 5, 2023 at 11:47 PM EST
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ELKHART, Ind. (WNDU) - Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra held its annual youth concert at the Lerner Theatre and invited some special guests.

They welcomed the Concord High School Symphony Orchestra and guest solo clarinetist Betsy Jaffee for their Symphony Legends Concert.

“Today’s concert theme is “The Legends,” where we are acknowledging and celebrating some of the people that made what we do here possible, one individual being the late Susan Ellington,” says Soo Han, Music Director for the Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra.

As the former executive director of the Elkhart County Symphony, Susan Ellington spearheaded a group that saved the Symphony Orchestra in 2008 during the recession. She passed away in 2017, but keeping the Elkhart County Symphony active made it possible for the Orchestra to continue its youth outreach program to this day.

“The Concord Students, if what I experienced within this past week is of any indication, our future is in bright hands,” Han added. “It was such a joy working with them. They are incredible young musicians and artists, and I’m really looking forward to the ways they are going to give back to our community in the future.”

The Symphony has held this side-by-side concert for the last 15 years, sharing classical music with Elkhart’s youth.

“As Soo Han said, without the new future of young people playing, there won’t be a future for our orchestras because it’ll die out with us as we get older,” says Violinist and Local Music Teacher Susan Nagel. “So, we really need the young people, and I think that the Concord Schools, Elkhart Schools is doing a great job with that program.”

Elkhart Mayor Rod Roberson was also in attendance tonight and issued a city proclamation at the banquet following the show.

“The city of Elkhart proclaims that Sunday, Feb. 5, 2023, as Elkhart County Symphony Day, in celebration of 75 years of music,” Elkhart Mayor Rod Roberson said. “For the past 75 years, the Elkhart County Symphony Association has promoted positive cultural experiences and instilled civic pride in our community.”

The Symphony is also giving away 200 Carry-On full-length folding keyboards for its 75th anniversary.

Han’s service dog, Lenny the Cockapoo, is rapidly becoming the mascot of the Elkhart County Symphony.

The Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra is back at the Lerner Theatre on Mar. 26 for its anniversary celebration. They will perform music played at the Elkhart County Symphony’s first-ever concert.