Calvin Community Symphony

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About

The Calvin Community Symphony, formerly known as the Calvin Alumni Orchestra, was founded in 1994 by former members of Calvin’s student ensembles to allow adult musicians to continue to serve the community by sharing performances of classical orchestral literature. The orchestra’s membership is open not only to Calvin alumni, but also to community musicians who share the orchestra’s goals and the college’s mission.


2016-2017 Season

Fall Concert: A Spanish Fiesta

Join Prof. John Varineau and the Calvin Community Symphony for their fall concert on November 12 in the CFAC Auditorium. They will be playing music from the Three Cornered Hat by Manuel de Falla, ballet music from Massenet’s El Cid, Rossini’s Barber of Seville, and the exciting Danzón No. 2 by Arturo Márquez.

Saturday, November 12, 2016 | 3:00 p.m.
Covenant Fine Arts Center Auditorium
Calvin College
3201 Burton St SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546 [map]

TICKETS: Admission is free; tickets are not required.

Spring Concert

Join Prof. John Varineau and the Calvin Community Symphony for their spring concert on March 4 in the CFAC Auditorium.

Saturday, March 4, 2017 | 3:00 p.m.
Covenant Fine Arts Center Auditorium
Calvin College
3201 Burton St SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546 [map]

TICKETS: Admission is free; tickets are not required.

John Varineau, conductor


John VarineauJohn Varineau was appointed in 2013 to the music faculty at Calvin College, where he conducts the Calvin Orchestra and the Calvin Community Symphony. Prior to this appointment he has been a visiting orchestra conductor at Calvin College, taught Music Theory at Calvin College and, as a clarinetist, taught clarinet at Calvin College, Cornerstone University, Grand Valley State University, and Grand Rapids Community College.

Mr. Varineau is also associate conductor of the Grand Rapids Symphony, and conductor of the Grand Rapids Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra. The 2013-2014 Season marks his 29th anniversary with the Symphony, and 26th year as the conductor of the Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra. For four years, he served as the Music Director of the Holland Chamber Orchestra (now the Holland Symphony). He has also been a visiting orchestra conductor Western Michigan University, a guest conductor for the Traverse City Symphony, the Lansing Symphony Orchestra, the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, the Indianapolis Symphony, the Detroit Symphony, and the Duluth-Superior Orchestra.

Mr. Varineau conducts nearly all of the Grand Rapids Symphony concert series, including the Richard and Helen DeVos Classical Series, Fox Motors Pops Series, the SymphonicBoom Series, Crowe Horwath Rising Stars Series, DTE Energy Foundation Family Series, PNC Lollipop Series and the D&W Fresh Market Picnic Pops. He also conducts a variety of educational and outreach concerts throughout the area. Mr. Varineau is committed to nurturing the next generation of classical music lovers.

He is a frequent visitor to area schools, and he shares an infectious enthusiasm with students throughout West Michigan.

Mr. Varineau also appears in a variety of summer music programs in the region and plays in the chamber music group Montage. In 2003, he appeared twice as a guest conductor with the Arkansas Symphony.

Additionally, he conducts the Grand Rapids Symphony for performances by the Grand Rapids Ballet Company. Mr. Varineau attended Michigan State University, University of Wyoming and Yale School of Music for his clarinet training. He has made three recordings with the Grand Rapids Symphony and three with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

He and his wife, Gwen, have a daughter, Jade, and a son, Justin.

Members

Violin I
Mary Klooster Hillyard
Sarah VanWingerden Bratt
Mary Bardolph
Laurie Boomers
Ian Graham
Rich Huisman
Lori Plaisier
Maria Poppen
Ryan Pott
Katie Seifert
Marlae Sloothaak
Lisa Van Dyke

Violin II
Hannah Piedt
Anna Connelly
Amy Brasser
Courtney Busscher
Gene Fonger
Lynn Khadija
Angie K. Mast
Susan A. Stoddard
Amy Vis
Lisa Walhout

Viola
Debra Rienstra
Katie Hettinga
MaryEllen Bloem
Elizabeth Campbell
Pete Colburn
Sarah Hofman-Graham

Cello
Andrew Plaisier
Joshua Ruiter
Arda Cushman
Ellen Maddix
Sardis Soto
Hannah Vis

Bass
Ron Rienstra
Sally Northouse De Vries
Traci Montgomery

Flute
Laura Schipper
David Van Dyke
Marie Albers

Oboe
Marjorie Hage Hoogeboom
Patricia Gordon

Clarinet
Nicholas J. Valenziano
Raymond Stakenas
Kristin Vander Linde McKay

Bassoon
Peggy Bentley Patrick
Carol Nutt

Horn
Cheryl Hoogewind
James Zwarensteyn
Natalie Henderson
Ann Reinhard
Susan Wygmans

Trumpet
Jonathan Karnes
Glenn Jarrell
Roger Griffioen

Trombone
Ben Huisman
Robert DeWeerd
James Mollema

Tuba
Paul Keen

Timpani
Eric Stone

Percussion
Justin Voogt
Ted Gerken
Marie Albers

Keyboard
Lois Nordling

Our History


Symphony PlayerThe Calvin Alumni Orchestra was founded in 1994 by former members of Calvin's student ensembles to allow adult musicians to continue to serve the community by sharing performances of classical orchestral literature. In 2010, the name was changed to the Calvin Community Symphony to better reflect who we are and who we serve through our music.

The orchestra is made up of a variety of musicians from the greater Grand Rapids and West Michigan community who share a love of performing classical orchestral literature. We hope to broaden our audience and increase our orchestra size by widening the door for community players and students to join us.

The orchestra is governed by a self-elected board and is supported by the alumni association, the department of music, and its own membership. The orchestra's members, who give freely of their time and talent, come from all walks of life. All share a common love of performing great orchestral literature from composers past and present, and an abiding respect for Calvin's educational mission and performing arts tradition.

The orchestra performs in the Calvin Covenant Fine Arts Center, typically twice a year on Sundays in November and March. Each concert is also performed at a local community venue. Information about past concerts can be found in this list of the orchestra's concert literature.


Read News & Stories feature Calvin Orchestra Gets New Conductor.