VSO Participates in Nationwide Food Drive

March 12, 2010

VSO Participates in Nationwide Food Drive

VALDOSTA -- The Valdosta Symphony Orchestra (VSO) has joined "Orchestras Feeding America" -- a nationwide effort to address the fight against hunger in America -- by hosting food drives in coordination with its 20th anniversary season's last two performances in March and May.

Inspired by the 2009 film, "The Soloist," starring Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr., the League of American Orchestras, Feeding America and Participant Media have challenged groups from coast to coast to take a stand against hunger by collecting non-perishables for local food assistance agencies and food banks. Last year, more than 250 orchestras representing all 50 states participated in the event, collecting over 200,000 pounds of food for local communities.

The VSO has partnered with Second Harvest of South Georgia and the Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts to host drives from March 22-31 and April 26-May 3. Bring non-perishable food items to collection sites, which include the lobby of VSU's Fine Arts Building, the main desk on the second floor of VSU's Student Union and the lobby of the Turner Center, 527 N. Patterson St.

VSO Conductor Howard Hsu has spearheaded the local effort because he feels passionate about helping the community through service.

"Projects such as this food drive are another example of the important role orchestras can play within their communities," said Hsu, who was hired in January 2009 as director of Orchestral Studies. "Especially during hard economic times when people are struggling, the VSO has the ability to help people and make our city an even better place to live."

The VSO will also release the final two of five posters and program covers created for a contest in celebration of the orchestra's 20th anniversary season. The work of Kathy Herring will be displayed at the March 27 event and the work of Richard Estes will be revealed at the final show on May 1.

These limited edition posters are on sale for $40 each and signed by the artist and conductor. All proceeds go toward music scholarships for students playing the Valdosta Symphony Orchestra. Posters can be purchased from College of Arts Outreach office, 229-333-2150; Classic Art and Frame Company, 229-244-1143 on Baytree Road; or at the Turner Center on Patterson Street.

Contact Howard Hsu at hpsu@valdosta.edu for more information about the food drives.

Upcoming Concerts:
MARCH 27. Subscription Concert No. 3. “Spirit.” Stunning virtuoso cellist Wendy Warner performs Elgar’s Cello Concerto with the VSO. Jonathan Bailey Holland’s “Motor City Dance Mix,” premiered by the Detroit Symphony, is “an exciting new work featuring the brass and percussion sections of the orchestra.” Also scheduled: Stravinsky’s 1919 “Firebird Suite.” 

Featured artist: Kathy Herring

MAY 1. Subscription Concert No. 4. “Musical Colors.” The entire VSO is featured in works by the masters of the orchestra: the world-changing Wagner, the innovative and unpredictable Berlioz, and uncompromising yet lyrical Brahms. A season-closing orchestral tour-de-force by the VSO. Wagner’s “Tannhauser Overture,” Berlioz’s “Hungarian March,” Brahms’ Second Symphony. 

Featured artist: Richard Estes

Where: Symphony tickets ($20) may be purchased by calling the Department of Music at 333-5804.

Most Needed Items:
dry soup
powdered/canned milk
macaroni and cheese
peanut butter
canned fruit and vegetables
canned meats
fruit juices/sip-sized juices

Unacceptable items
items in glass jars or bottles
unlabeled or dented cans
any open or resealed packaging
perishable foods
homemade foods
expired products
monetary donations
clothing, diapers or other non food items