Ridgewood Symphony Orchestra Festival Strings

An Educational Outreach Program

Festival Strings is an educational outreach program sponsored by the Ridgewood Symphony Orchestra, and includes young musicians from over 30 towns in northern New Jersey. The group comes together for five intense rehearsals and a wonderful concert in Ridgewood each winter.

Membership in the orchestra is open to all string players in grades six through eight upon the recommendation of their school or private study music teachers; all students are accepted without audition. Although most students who participate are members of their school orchestra, the activity also serves many students from communities without school string programs. Abilities on their instruments must include a command of first position, with extensions and accidentals, and facility in the higher positions for more advanced sections of the orchestra. High school alumni of the program often return to serve as rehearsal assistants to help with tuning and placement adjudication.

The group was originally organized by Dr. Sandra Dackow under the auspices of the New Jersey units of the National School Orchestra Association and the American String Teachers Association. Todd Van Beveren has conducted the Festival Strings Orchestra since 2009.

Festival Strings 2020 Registration

Festival Strings 2020 registration can be completed on line. When you click on the registration link, you will be able to complete the application. Once you complete the online form, you will receive a confirmation email that you need to print and return with the required signatures. The signatures are due by December 20, 2019. If you would like paper forms, please email [email protected] and we will be glad to send one. Also, if you have any problems with the online registration or do not get a confirm, please contact us at [email protected]

Festival Strings 2020

Rehearsal DateRehearsal Time
Rehearsals at Old Paramus Reformed Church
Tuesday, February 25, 20204:30-8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, March 3, 20204:30-8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, March 10, 20204:30-8:00 p.m.
Thursday, March 12, 20204:30-8:00 p.m.
Dress rehearsal at Ben Franklin Middle School
Saturday, March 14, 20201:30-3:30 p.m.
Concert at Ben Franklin Middle School
Saturday, Martch 14, 20204 p.m.

The Festival Strings 2020 concert will be Saturday afternoon, March 14, 2020 at Old Paramus Reformed Church. Rehearsals start on Tuesday, February 25, 2020. The rehearsals dates, application deadline, and other details are included in the application which is available below. Former Festival Strings members who are now in grades 10 - 12 and would like to participate as a rehearal assistant should fill out and submit the Rehearsal Assistant application.

To apply, fill out the Student Application Form.

To apply as a Rehearsal Assistant, fill out the Rehearsal Assistant Application Form.

To join the Festival Strings Mailing List, fill out the Mailing List Request.

Questions: email [email protected]