Imagine if you could a high school where there exists a viol consort….and the members of this consort are actual high school students. Now imagine that the students in this viol consort actual enjoy playing early music repertoire. Well let me say that this actually exists in Conroe ISD.
This is the second year of the Aquila Viol Consort at Oak Ridge High School. Thanks to the Loan Consort Program from the Viola da Gamba Society of America we have extra viols available to us this year. The current enrollment in the program is 8 students.
When we first started this program it was an after school program that met for an hour on Tuesday and Thursday. Now the ensemble is an actual class on the school schedule. This class meets every other day for 90 minutes in the morning.
The students are all members of the ORHS Orchestra program and have added the viol consort class to their own schedules. So on top of learning “modern” instruments they are also working on viols.
The students have had chances to work with Sarah Mead this year again. They have also worked with my Les Touches partner in crime Stephanie Raby.
Future projects this year include working with the Oak Ridge HS Choir and performing out in the community more.
I am proud of all the work they have done! This is something that isn’t offered at many colleges and universities but we are lucky at Oak Ridge HS to have this program!
What I have learned is that the sadder the song the more the enjoy it. They have managed to memorize Mille Regretz. I don’t have to do pop tunes or electric instruments….the old stuff still works.
Onward we go…..