2019 News Items

NJSYO President Gayle Topper Honored at First Annual SAVOR Gala

NJSYO President Gayle Topper was recently honored for her service to the NJSYO at the first annual Savor Gala, a benefit event to raise funds for the Middletown Arts Center. The event also recognized Toby Shlyit Mark (Axelrod PAC) for her work in Jewish advocacy and global education through film, and Tim Kelly for his work as Resident Artist for Camp Jinka and as the founder of the Art is Good/Puzzle Project.


Ben Ringer Chosen as 2019’s Outstanding Educator in Performing Arts

The NJSYO is very proud to announce that Ben Ringer, our Symphonic Youth Orchestra Conductor and Music Director, has been named by the Monmouth Arts Council as the 2019 Outstanding Educator in Performing Arts! @MonmouthArts



https://www.flipsnack.com/TheJournal/holmdel-august-2019-journal.html (page 69)

NJSYO Chamber Ensemble Featured at 2018-2019 Crescendo Competition Winners’ Recital

The New Jersey State Youth Orchestra’s Chamber Music Ensemble was featured in the Winner’s Recital of the 2018-19 Crescendo International Competition, which took place in the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York City on Sunday, January 20, 2019. They opened the Winner’s Recital with their original arrangement of Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.” The auditorium was filled to capacity, and many in the audience gave them a standing ovation for their performance. The Chamber Ensemble was awarded second place overall, a remarkable achievement for their first foray into the realm of international music competitions.

“It is such a wonderful opportunity for the Chamber Ensemble to be able to perform at Carnegie Hall. It is a dream come true for the musicians and their families,” according to Gayle Topper, President of the New Jersey State Youth Orchestra,

The Chamber Music Ensemble is led by accomplished conductor and musician Leo Soeda. The members are an advanced group of high school students from all over Monmouth County and beyond. Students in this group are given the unique experience of playing in a small group with more individual responsibility. All of the students work together using cues and focused listening, without having a conductor direct them during their performances.

According to Soeda, “I believe chamber music is the ultimate and the truest form of music making. Without the presence of the conductor, each player has the autonomy over how the music goes, which can make things more spontaneous. Each performer has a much bigger role to play, or bigger responsibility, than in orchestra or even in solo performance, which makes it more demanding, and therefore more rewarding. And I think that is what makes it more fun. In our group, everyone gets along, which I think is the most important key to having a successful ensemble, and on top of that, we play music that we like. We perform anything from Bach to Britney Spears. No style is out of bounds for us.”

2019 Summer Ensembles Gave Free Performances in Middletown and Asbury Park

The NJSYO Summer Chamber Ensemble opened for the Al Covington Band at the July 29th show of the Asbury Park Music Foundation’s annual summer concert series “Music Mondays at Springwood Park.” Please see http://asburyparksun.com/asbury-park-music-foundation-announces-summer-lineup-3/ and https://asburyparkmusiclives.org/upcoming-events-springwood for more information.

In addition, the NJSYO Summer Chamber Ensemble and the Ocean Grove Violin Academy teamed up to give a featured performance on Tuesday, August 7 at the Middletown Art Center.