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Playing First String

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Photograph by Jared CastaldiDayna Anderson, a 22-year-old college senior, was recently named the Delaware Symphony Orchestra’s new concertmaster—the youngest in DSO history.
 
Anderson beat out 27 other violinists to become the youngest person to hold that position in the United States. In her new role, Anderson will lead the orchestra’s violin section and stand second in line behind Maestro David Amado.
 
“It’s a huge position to have, concertmaster is a big deal,” says Anderson, who will graduate from the renowned Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia this month. “I am really blessed to have this opportunity and really excited and honored.”
 
What will she do for an encore? How about attracting a new generation of orchestra fans.
 
“She will definitely serve as a connection to the young people in the community,” says Lucinda Williams, DSO’s executive director. “She comes from an incredible institution that trains the most wonderful new musicians out there, which just really underscores that there are young people that totally love classical and orchestral music. She is a reflection of that.”
 
Anderson was surprised to win the position because it was the first audition in which she made it through every round. “They don’t usually stand on my side when it comes to this type of stuff because they want people to have a lot of experience, especially for a title spot,” she says.
 
Anderson was nervous about performing in a new environment, but she says orchestra members have been extremely helpful. Williams says it’s the responsibility of orchestra leaders to help a young musician navigate the waters.
 
“Being the concertmaster of a professional orchestra comes with a myriad of duties,” Williams says. “Traditionally, you have someone in that seat that has been in a professional orchestra for years, but we can help her learn the ins and outs and how to be a leader.”
 
Anderson admits that she has a lot to learn in her new position, but she looks forward to helping young people become interested in classical music.
 
“At some point there has to be new life brought into any ensemble,” Anderson says. “If it means getting young people in to see the orchestra or getting young people interested in classical music, any help that can be brought out with my position, I am all for it.”  —Caitlin Maloney
 
Page 2: Calling All Party People | A reality TV show is searching for Delaware parents who are throwing the best-ever bash for their child. Are you a Party Mama?
 

Look for Cher Przelomski and Planning Factory International on episodes of “Party Mamas.” Photograph by Jared CastaldiCalling All Party People

A reality TV show is searching for Delaware parents who are throwing the best-ever bash for their child. Are you a Party Mama?
 If you’re planning an over-the-top, in-other-parents’-faces, behemoth blowout for your kid’s birthday, bar mitzvah or graduation, you could find yourself starring on a TV show.
 
The reality show “Party Mamas” has teamed with local event planner Cher Przelomski of Planning Factory International to find enthusiastic moms and dads who intend to throw their child the party of a lifetime. We’re not talking pizza and pop at Chuck E. Cheese here. In fact, the more outrageous the parent and party, the better.
 
“The people we make an episode around have outgoing, larger-than-life personalities because they carry the episode,” says Stacey Jenkins, the show’s casting director.
 
Producers picked Przelomski, CEO of Planning Factory International in Wilmington, in part because of the creative, large-scale parties that her company has produced. Przelomski’s jovial personality didn’t hurt.
 
“Planning Factory International is very talented. They think big. They do things on an amazing scale,” Jenkins says. “Cher has an incredible personality and great spirit. She’s dramatic, funny and talented.”
 
Those interested in being featured in an episode of “Party Mamas” will be paired with the Planning Factory. If a parent meets the criteria, an audition video will be sent to Jenkins for casting.
 
Jenkins says about 80 percent of the show follows the trials and tribulations of planning and executing these events. She admits that it’s all about the drama. Episodes will be shot this summer and fall and will air two to three months later.
 
In its fourth season, “Party Mamas” has aired worldwide. Because it is syndicated, it will air on various networks in the United States.
 
If you think you have what it takes to be a party mama (or papa), contact Jenkins at (416) 301-0491, or sjenkins@e1ent.com. —Drew Ostroski
 
Page 3: Media Watch
 

Media Watch

We realize that this space is no longer used for Biden Time, but we couldn’t resist after Joe’s most recent blunder (most recent as of press time, we should note). The veep’s f-bomb, caught on a live mic after his boss signed the monumental health care bill, had folks from California to Delaware (and Claymont to Delmar) buzzing, beeping, Tweeting, and, well, swearing. The vice presidential curse inspired some to reorder the rankings of Joe’s all-time gaffes. We think this one went to No. 1 with a bullet. However, our favorite Bidenism remains: “The next Republican that tells me I’m not religious, I’m going to shove my rosary beads down their throat.”
 
Page 4: Artful Summer | A new summer arts program at Cab Calloway puts a nontraditional spin on education.
 

From left: Kathy Cammett, the summer school’s executive director, Doug Ingerson, chair of the Cab Calloway School Fund, and Carlos Alejandro, summer school board chair. Photograph by Thom ThompsonArtful Summer

A new summer arts program at Cab Calloway puts a nontraditional spin on education.
Even preteens know that summer jobs are a great way to make money. So why has it taken schools so long to realize the benefits of summer income?
 
“School buildings are empty, teachers are unemployed, and kids don’t have enough productive things to do. So I thought, What if we ran a summer enrichment program, and any profit we made could help fund programs during the academic year?” says Carlos Alejandro.
 
Thus was born Cab Calloway Summer School of the Arts, which debuts in June. In all likelihood, the summer program won’t turn a profit for at least five years, Alejandro admits, but if it succeeds, he hopes it can be a model for schools in Delaware and throughout the country.
 
 Some might call it summer camp, but “school” better suits the academic mission of the program, says Alejandro, who chairs the board for the summer school. Courses will be taught by public and private school teachers and by working artists in cooperation with organizations like OperaDelaware and Delaware Humanities Forum.
 
Alejandro hopes the artistic offerings will entice students turned off by the U.S. educational system’s traditional focus on language and numbers. “We want to get visual, musical or kinetic learners excited about their education, too,” Alejandro says. “Arts are the door, but the room is academics.” 
 
By week’s end, the students enrolled in the summer course “Introduction to PC Video Game Development” will have produced playable video games. In the process, they also will have learned programming basics and gained exposure to software ranging from 3D modelers to image manipulators.
 
The summer program, which runs June 21-Aug. 6, includes one- to three-week noncredit courses in all manner of arts—from voice and instrumental music to theater, dance and visual arts—and in topics both traditional (ballet, string orchestra) and topical (Bollywood dance, GarageBand Mac Lab). Most of the courses are geared toward rising 5th-8th graders, but there are a few offerings for high school students, too. Course and registration information can be found at cabsummer.org.      —Theresa Gawlas Medoff

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