NEW in 2018 — Chamber-Jazz-Pop

Performer, composer, arranger, pianist, clinician and jazz educator, Danny Seidenberg, will coach chamber ensembles as well as lead the 2018 Music Culture/Style Workshop.

Mr. Seidenberg plans to open up campers’ musical world by exploring the chamber-jazz-pop music style and instruments. His workshop will involve improvisation  as well as alternative style. He will bring his computer to generate a “backup band” and get students improvising.

Mr. Seidenberg is probably best known as a member of the Turtle Island String Quartet for 12 years, 1992-2004. He was in residence at the Henry Mancini Institute (UCLA) through 2006, was an instructor at UMass and Stanford in their jazz studies departments. He taught at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon, and he currently teaches arranging and improvisation classes at Vandercook College.

A Musical Experience FOR LIFE!

The OPUS camp faculty places students in chamber music, based on submitted audition videos, in small ensembles of two to six players which develops teamwork and draws on the individual strengths of each young musician. Chamber music requires close attention and therefore OPUS has 30 faculty members, which gives a high teacher to students ratio (1 teacher every 3 campers). They are assisted by 20+ teaching assistants and instructors.

The program is not just chamber music and orchestra or handbells, it is a compact mix of many joyful classes, loved by many enthusiastic young artists year after year (up to coming 14 times). Camaraderie, character-building, teamwork, cultural appreciation, music and people skills are just some of the major benefits campers take away with after attending the OPUS camp. New friendships are born and old friendships are rekindled.

Camp applications are due by June 12, 2018. Scholarship applications are due no later than June 5, 2018. Admission is based on electronic auditions. Groupings and music assignments will be decided in early-July, and music will be made available to campers for practice ~3 weeks prior to the Camp.

Camper / TA Grows Crystals

By Kevin Stoffel, Contrabass, 2-time Camper and 4-time TA including 2018

Kevin Stoffel introduces himself to senior citizens when performing for them in a Holiday Concert of 2017.

Part of why I want to pursue chemistry is because I’ve always had a fascination with pure substances.  The concept of looking at something and knowing that it isn’t an (effectively) inseparable mixture of fifteen, or six, or even two things was always really cool to me, even at a young age.  What better place to see, work with, and study pure substances than in in a chemistry laboratory?  And what better form to see or even hold a pure substance than one where the molecules are all lined up and packed together (theoretically) flawlessly, showing off their geometric arrangement even at the highly macroscopic scale—a crystal?

Anybody at home can grow some neat crystals easily and without much trouble.  Borax, for example, will form small, white, somewhat regular, somewhat boring crystals around a string or pipe cleaner dipped in a saturated solution.  But growing a really good crystal takes a bit more care, experience, cleanliness, safety, and equipment, as well as the right substance.  Certain substances very readily form quite regular, large, fine crystals without too much difficulty, if you know how to deal with them.  I do NOT recommend you try this at home, but I’ve been using copper(II) sulfate (blue) and potassium chromium sulfate (dark purple/red) to grow some really great crystals for a while now.  Soon, I actually hope to have enough sizeable specimens to give to my friends as gifts!  …After varnishing them in a protective clear coat using a pair of gloves, of course, because these chemicals are not considered safe to touch with bare skin.

The 16th Annual 2018 OPUS Chamber Music Camp Open for Enrollment

  • Come, if you are available July 29-August 4, The camp is in Naperville, IL on the campus of North Central College and the final concert is in Wentz Concert Hall.
  • Come, if you are a violin, viola, cello, double bass, harp, oboe, piano, clarinet or flute student, ages 8-18.
  • Come, if you would want to advance your skills through a team-developed curriculum, designed to challenge and musically-inspire you.
  • Come, if you’d like to expand your musical talents to include composition, electric instruments, music arranging, and videography.

 Come, if you’d like to make friends and have fun playing chamber music!

Registration for Saturday August 18, 2018 “Never Too Late” Workshop Now Open

Registration for the OPUS “Never Too Late” (NTL) chamber music workshop is now available online or by mail. The NTL Workshop is for violin, viola, cello, double bass, harp, piano, clarinet, oboe, and flute students of all ages and levels.

The Workshop will be held from 9 to 5 on Saturday, August 18th, 2018, at North Central College in Naperville. The Workshop consists of four chamber music coaching sessions and a lunch. Participants have the option to be in a learning from each other session or to perform in a final concert at Koten Chapel. Music will be provided to applicants at ~a week before August 18th to give applicants a chance to practice before the Workshop. It’s Never Too Late to Play! Be inspired, and you may grow to love it!

OPUS is fortunate to have a grant from ACMP (Associated Chamber Music Players) in New York City to sponsor this Workshop. The ACMP grant is particularly geared to encouraging ADULTS to come play chamber music.

For more information, please visit our website. Registration online is encouraged.

CAMPER / TA Shares His Passion About Crystals

One of the things we often ask our campers when they introduce themselves, is when you are not playing music, what else you’d like to do. Here is one of the answers:

By Daniel B. – Violin, 2017 Camper

On February 20, 2018, he wrote “Winter Equanimity” and support his thoughts with more photos of snow crystals:

Music is a way of expressing yourself in a way that connects with the souls of others. It’s goal is to heal and bring equanimity in the most difficult times. There are many types of music. Jazz entails a world of possibility. Whenever it is played, you don’t know what will come next. Folk contains insight into cultures of people all over the globe. Other music types, such as, gospel, country, and pop, spread joy and love of life. Music is sound, silence, and time nurtured by the human spirit.

Daniel B. took photos of snow crystals on Nov. 18, 2017 at his high school.