ONLY ON SUNRISE: Local violinists shine in youth symphony

Senior Olivia Langby and Hunter Hanson with the Chippewa Valley Youth Symphony have played alongside each other for a number of years. Now their talents will be shining at Northwestern University and the University of Madison.

Eau Claire, WI (WEAU) - We're just one day away from the final chance to audition for the next season with the Chippewa Valley Youth Symphony. For the last 34 years, the non-profit organization has helped area musicians take their talents to a new level like one dynamic duo.

"I started when I was five,” says Olivia Langby, Senior at Memorial High School.

Hunter Hanson another Senior at Memorial High School says, "I started with music before I was born because my mom was a music therapist."

When you hear the sounds of a symphony, you get taken into a new world.

"You're kind of in the middle of this amazing tempest of music,” says Hunter.

"I think it’s nice to have something that I can use to express myself and I think that violin is the best way to do that,” says Olivia.

For Olivia Langby, the Chippewa Valley Youth Symphony became a chance to grow her talent and meet people.

"When I was in 5th grade I was home schooled and I was really [not] socialized. I didn't know how to be around people. So my parents were like ehhh music and other people it's a good combination,” explains Olivia.

For Hunter Hanson, it was a chance to realize a new gift like composing music.

“I probably wouldn't have gotten to the point I am now until I had found out the Youth Symphony had a composing competition,” says Hunter.

These two violins and violinists play alongside each other with not only the CVYS, but with Memorial High School’s orchestra.

"I heard her play I was like oh no, what have I found and what have I come across. She ended up being a magnificent violin player,” says Hunter.

"We've had this rivalry, not really this rivalry. Just kind of a like sort of competive friendly thing going on,” explains Olivia.

What appears to be a rivalry is really two best friends doing what they love.

Hunter added, "I like she’s pivotal in me becoming the violin player I am today."

Their good luck charm is also playing a factor in their talent.

“She has a little teddy bear named Oscar. He likes to make appearance on the CVYA orchestra photos,” says Hunter.

The Music Director with CVYA says the organization is one that strengthens its students and strengthen their school music programs

"I think it gives them a creative opportunity outside their school music programs,” explains Eric Dasher, Music Director with CVYS.

"When you’re sitting in the orchestra playing, it’s amazing to be surrounded by the sound. Its just wow,” says Olivia.

"For me it’s been so important to have an organization like that where I can express my talent on the violin as well as my talent of composing,” says Hunter.

Hunter plans to attend Northwestern for a degree in composition. He hopes to be a film composer. Olivia has a scholarship to the University of Madison and will be playing with the orchestra.

If you're interested in auditioning with the Chippewa Valley Youth Symphony, Eric Dasher says the audition is 5 minutes for 7th-12th graders in the area. They can prepare a solo and there's some sight reading. He just wants to hear them play. Visit the link below the picture for more information.

Also, if you want to enjoy an upcoming concert with the Chippewa Valley Youth Symphony, you can attend "A Spring Tribute to Honor our Veterans."

It will be on May 18th at 3:00 P.M. at Gantner Concert Hall in the Haas Fine Arts Center at UW-Eau Claire. It will feature special guest Michael Perry, a New York Times bestselling author and Humorist
Plus North High School and Memorial High School choirs will perform.


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