Kaneland Youth Orchestra to present holiday concert

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

SUGAR GROVE – It’s not that the members of the Kaneland String Ensemble and the Kaneland Prep Strings haven’t performed in public.

The middle and elementary school students have been featured at various community events, most recently last weekend’s Holiday in the Grove in Sugar Grove and Monday’s School District 302 Board meeting at Harter Middle School.

But Dec. 19 will mark the first holiday concert presented by the Kaneland Youth Orchestra, a Sugar Grove-based nonprofit that aims to provide string education to youth in Kaneland.

Directed by Andrea LaFranzo, the concert is set for 7 p.m. in the Harter Middle School cafetorium. Admission is free.

“They sound amazing,” parent Sonya Hwang said Saturday as she and others from the Kaneland Youth Orchestra manned a bake sale table at the Holiday in the Grove craft fair.

Now in its second year, the Kaneland Youth Orchestra began with six middle school-age children who formed the Kaneland String Ensemble.

The organization has since expanded to include fourth- and fifth-graders, as well as third-graders with the director’s approval. They make up the Kaneland Prep Strings.

Participation between the groups totals 17 kids, Hwang said.

Janice Burroughs said her fourth-grade daughter, Abigail, loves participating in the orchestra. The 9-year-old began playing violin about a year and a half ago, her mother said.

“She just loves music,” Burroughs said, noting the girl’s grandfather played fiddle.

The Kaneland String Ensemble and Kaneland Prep Strings practice weekly at Harter Middle School. Beginners are welcome, although private lessons are encouraged. Visit www.sgparks.org for registration information.

If you go

What: Kaneland Youth Orchestra holiday concert

When: 7 p.m. Dec. 19

Where: Harter Middle School, 1601 Esker Drive, Sugar Grove

Admission: Free

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