Nelson County Community Orchestra Plays On

Ellen Neal, principal flutist, plays the tin whistle. Photo: Mary Cunningham

The third annual Holiday Jubilee was performed by the Nelson County Community Orchestra Dec. 15.  Twenty-four members ranging in age from fourteen to well past retirement performed together in multi-generational harmony.  The program opened with selections from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, followed by Dubinushka, and Millennium Suite. Bountiful refreshments were provided at intermission as contributions from the orchestra members.

The second half of the program featured seasonal arrangements beginning with Christmas Favorites “Pas de Deux” from the Nutcracker; “Sleigh Ride,” a medley of three popular melodies arranged by Bruce Chase; followed by “Appalachian Carol” with a tin whistle solo by Ellen Neal, principal flutist.   The finale offered the audience an opportunity to join their voices to the Hallelujah Chorus from Messiah by Handel.

Colton Henry, guest conductor, is a graduate student at James Madison University pursuing a master’s degree in orchestral conducting. This performance serves as an audition for the open position of conductor, which is the only paid position in the orchestra. This committed band of local musicians is all about the opportunity to play together offering quality musical performances for the community.

Thanks were extended to Nelson County Public Schools and North Branch School for the educational music programs, Rockfish Presbyterian Church for the weekly practice space and Rockfish Valley Community Center for the performance auditorium. All concerts are free and open to the public offered by this non-profit volunteer organization. More information is available at 


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