The Westwood Ensemble is presently a string orchestra of about 30 musicians and growing. The ensemble is unique in two regards:
- we play literature rarely performed by other ensembles, and
- youth, adult amateurs, and top professionals comprise the group.
The professionals aid in working with the ensemble members. Many of the members are present or past students of these professionals. There is a $20 audition fee but no other membership fees to play.
Westwood Ensemble gets its name from the location where we rehearse. We initially rehearsed at the City Hall of Westwood, Kansas. Westwood is a diverse community in the northeast corner of Johnson County. Its boundaries include State Line and County Line roads, situated just west of Kansas City, Missouri’s Country Club Plaza.
Westwood Ensemble is a 21st-century ensemble with a presence on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Live Concerts are planned for about one hour in length without intermissions or printed programs. Audience members are encouraged to use their smartphones and follow the program on our website during the performance. The Conductor interacts with the audience and shares information about the music throughout the program. Concerts are free, informal and designed for all ages.
Traditional string orchestra literature is the core of what we perform. However, programs offer much variety: J.S. Bach, The Beatles, Vivaldi, Jimi Hendrix, Mozart, Astor Piazzolla, Gershwin, Duke Ellington, Elgar, Bernard Hermann, Franz Liszt, and Verdi have been programmed. During our Alpha season, professional soloists have been featured playing the trombone, piano, violin, and flute. Plans are underway for the Beta season with the hopes of including winds and percussion in future concerts.