June 19, 2014
The Charlottesville High School Orchestra's String Ensemble played a Bon Voyage concert on Thursday night. Charlottesville schools superintendent Rosa Atkins and 57th district delegate David Toscano spoke before the concert.
The award-winning String Ensemble is departing Friday for France. The students will play in and visit Charlottesville's sister city, Besançon. They perform at Chartres Cathedral and at the American Cathedral in Paris.
Students said they were excited to play concerts internationally.
"It'll be fun to represent Charlottesvillle. It's a responsibility but I think we've practiced, we've got it," said Gabriel Lipkowitz, a cellist in the ensemble.
"It's exciting to bring our talents to major historical sites like cathedrals and places around the world," said David Cohn, a cellist.
Only the students who play the violin and viola will take their instruments with them, packing them as a carry-on. The cellists and bassists will leave their instruments in America and rent an instrument in France.
Students from Besançon have visited Charlottesville and impressed violinist Micah Hunter-Chang. He said he hopes to represent Charlottesville well, too.
"I'm pretty excited because it sort of seems like they always send people over here that do pretty great stuff," said Hunter-Chang. "But once we go over there we can sort of show off and show...what we can do as an orchestra."
An anonymous donation of $10,000, given through the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, helped the Charlottesville High School Orchestra meet their $190,820 fundraising goal to send the ensemble to France.