West Jordan Symphony's players dedicate themselves to the craft

All volunteer • Musicians from all over the community gather to rehearse, perform.
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West Jordan • The sounds of sweeping violins and soothing flutes that usher in the romantic moments that sneak in between the sweeping action sequences of Star Wars fill the halls of the West Jordan City Hall.

It's a Saturday morning, and the all-volunteer West Jordan Symphony is rehearsing for its Oct. 27 Fall Concert.

The group, which has about 40 members, is conducted by Music Director Larry White, who leads rehearsals, selects music and keeps the players in sync.

"These players have to give up time with their families to do this, but they love the music," White said. "It gives them the opportunity to play great music and keep their skills sharp. It's well worth it and rewarding."

The group rehearses every Saturday morning for two hours from mid-August through April, and then players spend time during the week working on their individual parts.

Some members, such as Marie Maxfield, drive from long distances to play. She commutes in from Syracuse each week, but she says have to wake up early is a small sacrifice for the joy she finds playing in the orchestra.

"I really enjoy the group, and I enjoy the conductor. He picks a great selection of music, and there's always a challenge for someone with the music, which is great for whole group," said Maxfield, who is the head of public relations for the group and the concertmaster. "The people are good people, and we play well together. It's worth getting up that early."

The orchestra players range in age. Most players are experienced and are in at least high school or college, and many are older adults, occasionally a younger player is impressive enough to keep on.

The symphony is funded by the West Jordan Arts Council, receiving $1,200 each year for sheet music and other expenses, according to city spokeswoman Kim Wells.

Anyone who is interested in playing with the symphony is welcome to talk with White, and if they can handle the music and time commitment, they are welcome to play, White said.

"Sometimes the music is too difficult for some folks, and they weed themselves out," White said. "But we're a community group, and we understand that."

Some of the players in the symphony are related, said Maxfield, whose husband, Evan Maxfield, plays trumpet.

"We have a lot of people who have family members that participate," she said. "It's an extra special thing to do with your spouse or children."

In addition to the four annual concerts the symphony plays, smaller all-woodwind and all-strings groups perform at retirement homes and for West Jordan's holiday open house.

Their concerts are all free-of-charge.

"Not only is this a good opportunity for us to play," White said, "but it's a good chance for the people to come and have a free concert and hear great music."


Twitter: @sheena5427 —

West Jordan Symphony Fall Concert

Saturday, Oct. 27

7:30 p.m.

West Jordan Senior Center, 8025 S. 2200 West, Saturday, Oct. 27, at 7:30 p.m.

Attendance is free

Concertgoers are encouraged to wear Halloween costumes, and kids can trick-or-treat after the performance

Music will range from pop-culture favorites such as "Star Wars" and "Wicked" to classical pieces such as "Scheherazade"