Meridian Symphony Orchestra performs for students Thursday

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MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - Music was in the air at the Riley Center Thursday morning. The Meridian Symphony Orchestra performed, demonstrated orchestra playing, and taught students from many different elementary schools.

“It’s a program that’s developed together with Carnegie Hall out of New York, and it’s called the LinkUp program,” says Peter Rubardt, the music director of the Meridian Symphony Orchestra. “The kids actually got to play along with us, and sing along with us, and do lots of things with us, and we all just had a great time.”

Thursday’s event was the final part of the LinkUp program that students have been working on since last October.

“We talked things like dynamics and things like motifs,” says Claire Hanschke, the owner of Ms. Claire’s Music Center.

“We talked about tempo and how some music is fast and some music is slow, and different musical styles,” Rubardt says.

Throughout the program, students learned the recorder and even got to play with the orchestra at the event.

“In a lot of classical music, you actually hear some of the same progressions in that music that you actually hear in pop music today,” Hanschke explains. “Classical music permeates our children’s lives, and we can help kind of fuel that, and the more music they’re exposed to, the more they can realize, ‘hey, I like this kind of music, I don’t like this kind of music’ and kind of build their own repertoire or who they appreciate listening to.”

This program was made possible by the Any Given Child initiative and the Meridian Council for the Arts. Members from the Newton County High School Choir also performed at the event.

“It’s really important for Meridian to have this program for children that would not normally come to the Riley Center have that experience, to get exposed to the Meridian Symphony Orchestra, to all that really rich classical music that they might not be exposed to at their house.”

There is a concert tonight called ‘Symphony Doo Dah’ and it is featuring the Meridian Symphony Orchestra. The event starts at 7 p.m. at the Riley Center. You can get tickets online or at the Riley Center Box Office. You can call the box office at 601-696-2200.