Time for WASO to blow its horn

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Music - Tanya MacNaughton

WASO will mark an im­por­tant mile­stone dur­ing the com­pany’s Ed­u­ca­tion Week 2016 next week as its Ed­u­ca­tion Cham­ber Orches­tra (ECHo) cel­e­brates turn­ing 21.

Tuba player Cameron Brook joined WASO in 1983 and has been part of ECHo from the be­gin­ning.

He said the past 21 years had been quite a jour­ney of in­tro­duc­ing mu­sic to young­sters in Perth and re­gional WA.

“A few peo­ple thought we could do more in terms of what th­ese days they call ‘ed­u­ca­tion and out­reach’,” Brook said.

“In a per­fect world there would be lots of money to tour the en­tire orches­tra around re­gional ar­eas of WA, but that per­fect world didn’t even ex­ist fi­nan­cially 21 years ago.

“We go out to schools or put con­certs on and give chil­dren the chance to at least see one of each in­stru­ment in the orches­tra.

“They also get the chance to play some; they get a gen­uine, hands-on and up-close ex­pe­ri­ence with or­ches­tral in­stru­ments.”

Brook said there had been many high­lights with ECHo and the most cher­ished mo­ments often hap­pened out of Perth.

“You ex­pe­ri­ence what I’m about to say to some ex­tent at any of the con­certs,” he said.

“But when you get up into the Kim­ber­ley, which we did in 1996 and the ABC did a doc­u­men­tary on it, you watch those kids see and ex­pe­ri­ence th­ese in­stru­ments live for the first time. It’s an im­me­di­ate con­nec­tion and a re­minder of the won­der of mu­sic.”

ECHo, which fea­tures 15 mu­si­cians on vi­o­lins, flute, clar­inet, oboe, bas­soon, french horn, trumpet, trom­bone, tuba, per­cus­sion and harp, will cel­e­brate by per­form­ing two Kids’ Cush­ion Con­certs for chil­dren up to six years on Satur­day, June 25.

A new dou­ble-bass, hand­made by WASO bassist and luthier An­drew Tait, will also be given to the en­sem­ble, with many ECHo alumni in at­ten­dance.

Other Ed­u­ca­tion Week per­for­mances in­clude The Rusty Orches­tra and Peter and the Wolf.

More at www.waso.com.au.

Picture: An­drew Ritchie www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d455231

Clar­inet­tist Alex Mil­lier, Cameron Brook (tuba) and Joan Wright (dou­ble-bass) are ready to cel­e­brate.

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