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Kids Around the Bay

July 7, 2011

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Young People's Chamber Orchestra: New Director

Dawn Dover takes the reigns as music director of The Young Persons Chamber Orchestra in Santa Rosa, beginning this month. YPCO, established in 1998, is a 20-piece string ensemble modeled after the New Century Chamber Orchestra, designed to be a conductorless ensemble for highly trained young musicians. “I am so honored to have been selected as the new music director for the YPCO,” Dover said. “I feel true excitement knowing that I will be able to work with these incredible young musicians again and that our musical journey together can continue. The creativity is already flowing and I can’t wait to get into rehearsal!”

As an educator, Dover maintains a private violin studio in Windsor, has taught chamber music at the Santa Rosa Junior College as well as in several music programs in Marin, including the Marin Youth Orchestra, the Marin Academy, San Domenico School, and the Marin Waldorf School. She was recently appointed orchestra conductor for the new Waldorf-inspired public charter school, Credo High School, in Rohnert Park. She is also a performer and was first violinist of the Carmel Bach Festival Quartet for five seasons. Dover is an original member of the New Century Chamber Orchestra, played with the San Diego Chamber Symphony and Chamber Orchestra, the Santa Barbara Symphony and was concertmaster/soloist of the Santa Barbara and Sonora Chamber Orchestras. She performed with the San Francisco Symphony for over 12 years.

Teen Theater Star's Grand Goodbye

Diablo Theater Company’s teen theater, STARS 2000, is sending one of their stars shooting off into the galaxy this fall. A veteran of the Danville company since fourth grade, Tony Conaty has played roles in 35 shows with STARS 2000 and other companies in the seven years since he became involved with musical theater. This means countless hours spent memorizing dialog, taking outside singing and dancing lessons, rehearsing productions, and of course keeping up with his schoolwork. “It's the hands-on training from STARS that has taught me everything I know about the stage,” Conaty says. “I am sad that my time with the company is quickly coming to an end, yet I'm excited to go out and try new things.”

Mentor Diane Kamrin, the founder-producer of STARS 2000, has worked with hundreds of talented kids, and says Conaty really possesses that special spark. They are now in rehearsals for Contay’s last show, Fiddler on the Roof (see event info, in which he plays Perchick, a student and Bolshevik revolutionary. The show opens July 22 for eight performances at San Ramon Valley High School in Danville. 

Cazadero Offers Camp for the Entire Family

Do you ever wish you could dust off your instrument and go along to music camp with the kids? Cazadero Performing Arts Family Camp is your perfect opportunity! This camp caters to people of all ages, from beginner to dabbler to proficient, with interests ranging from didgeridoo to string band to chorus. Choose from drop-in classes in piano, guitar, congas, taiko drums, steel drums, violin, harmonica, and many others on offer. In addition to the hodge-podge of musical ensembles and classes which cater to kids or adults, there are a few classes you could take together with your children. In fact, there’s so much music happening, the camp imposes a few “music free” hours to give everyone’s ears a rest.

Families can also get their fill of yoga, dance, capoeira, storytelling, painting, photography, stone carving, print and jewelry making, crafts, writing, and more. Situated in the redwoods along Austin Creek close to Guerneville, nature provides a beautiful backdrop for outdoor recreation as well. Evening activities include campfires, talent shows, pool parties, and jam sessions. Kids as young as two and a half years of age can be accommodated too. For more information and to sign up for their August sessions, visit the Web site.

Lisa Petrie is a writer and specialist in marketing and public relations for arts and education organizations. She earned a DMA in flute performance from SUNY, Stony Brook, and is the mother of two musical kids. Lisa was the Content Manager for the Kids and Families section of San Francisco Classical Voice during 2011.