Orchestra Performs with Classic Rock Band Kansas

The Truman Orchestra performed with classic rock band Kansas Oct. 9 in front of a crowd of 2,500 at the St. Charles Family Arena in St. Charles, Mo.
The concert was part of the band’s “2010 Collegiate Symphony Tour,” sponsored by D’Addario & Company, Inc., the world’s largest musical products accessory manufacturer. Truman was one of only six schools to share the stage with Kansas during this tour.

The Orchestra played a full set with the band, including well-known hits like “Carry On My Wayward Son” and “Dust in the Wind.”

The Truman Orchestra performs with Kansas in St. Charles, Mo., Oct. 9.

As a part of its agreement to participate in the tour, the Truman Music Department will receive $2,000 in scholarships and $3,000 in equipment from D’Addario, as well as a percentage of merchandise sales from the night of the concert.

During the show, Avery Bright, a graduate student in music, had the unique opportunity to perform one-on-one with Kansas violinist David Ragsdale.

“Ragsdale asked us if we had anybody who would be good for [improvising] and we thought Avery would be terrific,” said Jay Bulen, chair of the Music Department. “He has a background as a classical player, but he also has a background in fiddling. He got up there and did a great job.”

Bulen feels his students benefitted from the concert in many ways, most notably the learning experience of playing in front of a large crowd with such a high caliber of talent.

“Our students got to play for Larry Baird, who did the arrangements for Kansas when they played with the London Symphony,” said Bulen. “He’s the best in the industry.”

Bulen also hopes the University’s new contacts with D’Addario will provide students with internship opportunities in the music industry.

David Via, vice president of sales and marketing for D’Addario (left), presents a donation to the Truman Foundation following the University Orchestra’s participation with Kansas’ “2010 Collegiate Symphony Tour.” The donation will be used to fund music scholarships in the Fall. Accepting the check are Jay Bulen, chair of the Music Department, and Becky Pike, Office of Advancement.

Another positive aspect of the concert was the opportunity to network with alumni. Members of the St. Louis Alumni Chapter provided a meal for orchestra students at the Little Hills Restaurant in St. Charles between rehearsals. For many of the Orchestra’s 85 members, the event provided an opportunity to play in front of family and friends. Five members are natives of St. Charles, another 27 are from St. Louis County and even more hail from nearby.

Bulen has received nothing but positive feedback concerning the concert.

“The word that comes most often is ‘awesome,’” Bulen said. “The concert was terrific. There were several standing ovations and people were very excited.”

The Family Arena was the final venue for the Orchestra’s three-day recruiting tour, which included stops at Quincy Senior High School, Ladue Horton Watkins High School and Fort Zumwalt East.

Previous Next