Society of Strings
Society of Strings consists of adult amateur string players of all skill levels. Be the Orchestra introductory courses introduce fundamentals and prepare students to join the Bravo performing ensemble. More advanced participants play in the Encore and Sinfonia ensembles that perform four annual concerts. All groups are led by OKCPHIL musicians and educators, emphasize advancing technical and musical skills, and are invited to exclusive educational and social activities with OKCPHIL musicians and guest artists.
All classes/ensembles meet once a week on Monday evenings at First Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma City. Registration fees include all materials necessary for class. You will need to provide your own instrument – we can help you connect with a local music store to rent an instrument.
Society of Strings charges a registration fee to contribute to program costs and special events. However, to relieve financial burden as a potential barrier to participation, members donate to a fund that covers partial and full scholarships for their fellow musicians. Donations exceeding scholarship needs are applied to operating costs of the program and exclusive Society of Strings experiences with OKCPHIL musicians and guest artists. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to donate or request a scholarship.
To join our mailing list to receive registration notices and program updates, please submit the Society of Strings Interest Form. Participants ages 18 and up are welcome. Beginners are free to register for a Be the Orchestra – Fall/Beginner session during open registration. New participants with any prior playing experience should email SocietyofStrings@okcphil.org to discuss ensemble placement with Society of Strings Coordinator, Dr. Rob Bradshaw prior to registering.
The Oklahoma City Philharmonic takes the health and safety of our OKCPHIL family very seriously, including musicians, staff, volunteers, and Society of Strings members. We will continue to monitor the status of Covid-19 in the area, and decisions regarding safety protocol may require reevaluation throughout the season in order to protect our community. For more information contact SocietyofStrings@okcphil.org or Education@okcphil.org.
Be the Orchestra (Fall/Beginner):
A beginning orchestra class tailored for adults! Learn to play the violin, viola, cello, or bass in this 8-week introductory course led by Dr. Rob Bradshaw. No prior musical knowledge is necessary to be a part of this exciting class. Practicing outside of the course is suggested but not mandatory. This beginning course is offered twice each fall with 2021 start dates on August 16 and October 18. Register now!
Be the Orchestra (Spring/Intermediate):
Led by Dr. Rob Bradshaw, this 8-week course continues the work completed in our beginner BTO class and is also appropriate for students who have some prior experience but have not played in a while.
Students should have experience reading musical notation appropriate for their chosen instrument and should be able to demonstrate the basic fundamentals of proper instrument setup, left and right hand technique including playing both with the bow and by plucking, and be able to successfully play notes on the A and D strings. The 2022 session begins on January 3. Registration will open in December.
Bravo (Spring only):
Bravo is the perfect class for students who are ready to perform in their first concert. Suited for students who have just completed the OKCPHIL Be the Orchestra Intermediate program, Bravo’s 8-week curriculum continues to advance student’s growing technical and musical skills, culminating in a performance at the conclusion of the spring semester. Students should be comfortable reading musical notation for their instrument and have a solid foundation in instrument setup, left and right hand technique including use of the bow and plucking the instrument, and be able to read and play notes on all four strings of their instrument. The 2022 session begins on March 7. Registration will open in February.
Encore is an intermediate-level performance ensemble led by Steve Waddell. Encore members generally have at least one to two year’s playing experience or have completed the Be the Orchestra program and performed with Bravo. This ensemble performs in public concerts four times each year while also advancing technical, musical, and ensemble skills. Players in the ensemble should be comfortable playing in first position on their instrument. Skills which will develop with participation in Encore include: solid tone production, focused intonation, advanced rhythms, vibrato, shifting to third position (violins/violas), shifting to third and fourth positions (cellos/basses), and more. Rehearsals begin on August 16, 2021. Register now!
Sinfonia is the advanced performance ensemble of Society of Strings. This ensemble performs a wide range of repertoire, and students should be comfortable playing in multiple positions on their instrument. Repertoire requires advanced musical knowledge and skill with challenging rhythms, a developed tone, solid vibrato, and the ability to play in keys up to three sharps and three flats. Led by Jean Statham, this ensemble performs four times throughout the year. Rehearsals begin on August 16, 2021. Register now!