The South Ulster Sinfonia began life as a 'Come and Play' event in 2004. It was formally established in January of the following year under the auspices of the Southern Education and Library Board's Music service.
It was initially a string orchestra, but we were pleased to add wind instruments shortly after and have recently been delighted by the addition of brass and percussion.
We are a community orchestra which provides one of the few local opportunities for adults who play an instrument to explore the orchestral repertoire. It is open to anyone who plays an instrument we can obtain or adapt music for. Players should usually be playing to grade 6 or higher and be reasonable sight readers - but talk to us if you are determined to improve rapidly! The range of music is wide and satisfying: early music to modern, light to serious, easy and more challenging.
We recently added our 53rd member and draw from a wide range of backgrounds. A few members are, or were, professional teachers of their instruments; others learnt to play at school and have returned to music in later life, some began to learn as an adult; some players are also active in other styles of music such as traditional or jazz.
We usually have around 4 performances each year: one or two Christmas events, a concert with a school or youth group and a summer concert, in addition we have Open Rehearsals where members of the public can listen in or better still, join us and play along!
Players come from a wide area - Armagh, Down, Monaghan, Louth, Antrim, Tyrone and Fermanagh. There is a great mix of personalities and the social nature of the group is an important element helping players maintain friendships and build new ones. We meet in Craigavon, usually fortnightly, on Saturday afternoons (1:30-4:00) from September to June.