Writer / Johnette Cruz
Photographer / Tom Russo, ISO
The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra (ISO) is back this year for a second round of their 317 Series! Launched in 2015, the 317 Series brings the ISO concerts and programs to communities and schools surrounding Indianapolis, including Hendricks County and the Greater Greenwood areas. Between stops at Mount Pleasant Christian Church and Center Grove High School, over 1,000 people enjoyed the ISO performances in the Center Grove area.
Jessica Di Santo, ISO Director of Communications, gave us insight on another performance that took place within in the community. “We also had a blast last May at the Greenwood Park Mall’s Barnes and Noble store where we brought a full day of ensemble performances by our musicians and children’s programming to the store. More than 500 people came and visited with us.”
Di Santo also reflects on her experience from last year’s season. “We were greeted so enthusiastically with a great turnout at the concerts and by the community of corporate sponsors, partners and businesses,” says Di Santo. “Patrons enjoyed the classical programming! Eight of our musicians worked more than 25 hours alongside students’ musicians at Center Grove High School as part of its thriving orchestra program. That’s one of the best results of our community collaboration – inspiring the next generation of music-lovers.”
So what’s new for 2016? The ISO will be back for three different performances: one each at Mount Pleasant Christian Church and Center Grove High School, and new to the lineup is an outdoor performance at Mallow Run Winery. Also new is a pre-concert experience called “Words on Music.” Assistant Conductor Vince Lee will be hosting informal, fun “chats” before each concert to better engage audiences with what the ISO will be performing.
Di Santo and her team have learned a lot from the ISO branching out into different areas. “We have truly discovered that there are so many people we’ve reached in Greater Greenwood that have never been downtown to hear an ISO performance, and they were deeply grateful for the opportunity in ‘their own backyard.’ Recordings and CDs are wonderful, but there is no better way to experience the power of classical music than by a live, symphony experience,” explains Di Santo.
None of this could be possible without the help of some partnerships that have come alongside the ISO to help promote and execute this initiative. Di Santo reveals that the series was strengthened immensely in choosing Center Grove High School, Mount Pleasant Christian Church and Mallow Run Winery. “All three venues can fit us in, schedule us at the right time and enhance the experience with activities,” adds Di Santo.
“In addition, we’ve developed an outstanding partnership with the Greenwood Arts Council. The Arts Council hosted two successful free events for us last year for its business partners and community.”
The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra is looking forward to building on the momentum of last season to reach even more people in the community. To see full details and view more information about the 317 Series, go to indianapolissymphony.org/season/317-series.