The JSO experience
The Junior Symphony Orchestra will stage its second concert at the
Lionel Wendt Theatre on November 2. The young musicians, ranging from
the ages of 12 to 25, have received expert training under Maestro Ananda
Dabare over the last eight months and will showcase their skills and
love of music at this concert.
Many young musicians are playing in the JSO for the first time.
Performing in an orchestra has been a great experience for all of them
and they have enjoyed the opportunity to “make music” together.
The youngest member of the JSO, 12 year old Kavishka Paranavitana
from Royal College, Colombo, says: “It is a fantastic experience to play
with a lot of instruments and co-operate with others to make good music
and it’s a great pleasure to work with a conductor like Ananda Dabare”.
Ananda Dabare, who is both a Conductor and Leader of the Symphony
Orchestra of Sri Lanka, has taken on the responsibility of training
these young musicians with the intention of creating a pool of young
musicians who will progress into the Symphony Orchestra of Sri Lanka.
His expertise and experience has helped these young musicians into
performing challenging classical works, which include Mozart’s Symphony
No. 40 and the delightful Weber “Invitation to the Dance”. Under
Ananda’s tutelage the young musicians have enhanced their own skills
while learning ensemble playing, giving them all a great deal of
Prashan Bastiansz is a 13 year old Trumpet player, who joined the JSO
three months ago. He expressed his feelings as “I never thought I will
be able to play for a JSO concert within three months.
Thanks to Ananda Dabare’s effort and commitment, I will be performing
on stage. I am privileged, proud, honoured and fortunate to perform for
the JSO and I will cherish this moment with pride throughout my life.”
The JSO combines many young children who are playing in an orchestra
for the first time with experienced young musicians who are already
performing with the Symphony Orchestra of Sri Lanka.
Their leadership and experience guides the younger children and gives
them the confidence to play an orchestra. Vidurinda Samaraweera, a
French Horn player from S Thomas, is 14 years old.
This is his first experience of playing in the JSO and he states: “It
is really a great pleasure to play in the Junior Symphony Orchestra and
I feel very happy when playing with my friends in a well recognized
It feels great to play in an orchestra with great many players and I
am very proud to be amongst them.
The young musicians are very lucky to have the Junior Symphony
Orchestra and every one of them can get knowledge of music from the
professional musicians and conductors and gain a remarkable experience
while enjoying music. All can improve as good orchestral players. I
think that this is a great chance for all of us!”
Some of the young musicians who first played in the inaugural JSO
concert in July last year have already graduated into the Symphony
Orchestra of Sri Lanka. Sachiththa Fernando, a 17 year old from Ananda
College, has already played with the SOSL since first playing for the
JSO and enjoys the thrill of being a part of the main orchestra.
He is proud to play first violin and first desk in the JSO and says
“I have been a member of the JSO since its establishment. I participate
in all scheduled practices with great pleasure and commitment. I feel
that it has always been a great support for my music career.”
The Young musicians of the JSO are united by their common love for
music and they are inspired by the music to reach greater heights in
their performance. Katie Renker, a young flautist from Elizabeth Moyer,
sums it by saying “Being in the JSO is an amazing experience. Not only
is it a great opportunity to learn and develop through ensemble playing,
but it is also incredibly enjoyable.”
The JSO concert is an opportunity for all young music students to see
children of their own ages performing high quality orchestral music,
which will inspire and motivate them to enhance their own skills. This
concert is sponsored by the Royal Norwegian Embassy as part of their
programme to enhance and develop musical skills through exposure and
exchange of experience and to make high quality music accessible to all