There are New Presidents in Town


Photo Courtesy of Isabella Lewin

Juniors Chloe Tzau (Left) and Isabella Lewin (Right) will be orchestra presidents next year. They look forward to continuing the traditions of past presidents while adding some of their own.

Nathaniel Martin, Staff Writer

Following a short but successful campaign, orchestra presidents-elect Isabella Lewin and Chloe Tzau look forward to a year for new ideas and increased input. The junior violinists ran unopposed for orchestra’s highest office, and on May 3rd they were unanimously elected.

Lewin described that the inspiration for campaigning came from the “great examples set our freshman and sophomore years”, but also a hopeful vision for the future.

“We wanted to continue the positive atmosphere the former presidents established,” Lewin finished.

Even before taking office, Lewin and Tzau have already made additions to the normal orchestra repertoire. Earlier this spring they organized a volunteer orchestra that traveled to and played at the Sheridan at Green Oaks, a senior living home in Lake Bluff.

As presidents, Lewin and Tzau plan to use that volunteer orchestra more in and out of school.

“We are going to try to make our volunteer orchestra a little more involved [by] going out to more places similar to the choir,” Lewin said referring to holiday vocal groups Madrigals and Bel Cantos.

Outside of extracurricular opportunities, look for revitalization of concert days with Lewin and Tzau at the helm.

“We want to do more orchestra bonding — maybe getting food before concerts,” Tzau said.

A more connected atmosphere is something both Lewin and Tzau want to establish next year in orchestra. One of the ways they will try to achieve this is by looking for more input from members of the orchestra on what pieces to play at concerts.

At the moment, pieces are chosen by Orchestra Director Robert Bassill without any coordination with orchestra members outside of seniors picking their last piece at the May concert.

“We want a little more collaboration from the orchestra,” Lewin said. “A piece per concert.”

In practice, this could mean the orchestra choosing a romantic piece for one concert and music from a popular movie for the next concert. Tzau summed the goal of this plan up nicely —“People actually want to play pieces that they know,” she said.

Lewin and Tzau won’t be leading a country, but their jobs won’t be a walk in the park.

The symphony orchestra is notorious for spending at least half of class eating snacks, chatting with friends, and scrounging for lost music. The concert orchestra meets on the other side of lunch, and rarely has any input in the affairs of the entire orchestra program.

An organized and unified orchestra is a challenge both future presidents see as a goal worth trying to achieve. Coordinating schedules between orchestra to ensure everyone’s opinions are heard is something Lewin and Tzau look forward to doing next year.

“Everyone can get what they want out of orchestra,” Tzau mentioned as a reason for undertaking this task.

Lewin and Tzau won’t be alone; they will depend on the rest of the 2019-2020 orchestra board to ensure smooth sailing.

“We want a fun orchestra board that can work together and with Bassill,” Tzau said.

This collaboration is already beginning to take effect when PR-elect Lara Keim, a junior violinist, campaigned and was elected on a platform of working with the snake keepers (not a typo) to make sure Friday snacks are a constant instead of a surprise.

The orchestra seniors leaving in less than a month can be confident that the “wheels won’t fall off the track” when they’re gone. The future looks bright with Lewin and Tzau on course to lead the orchestra at the start of next school year.


Rounding out the rest of the 2019 – 2020 Orchestra Board Elections

Several races were uncontested, but there was some degree of competition. The results of the rest of the elections are below.

The Violin Representatives are junior Jane Mockus and freshman Eva Sharman.

The Viola Representatives are sophomore Sydney Rubenstein and junior Priya Krishnaswamy.

The Cello Representative is junior Grace Mockus.

The Bass Representatives are juniors Billy Gardner and Jack LaVanway.

The newly-created position Administrative Assistant will be held by sophomore Margot Pierce. She will be in charge of all things logistics, ensuring each orchestra period runs smoothly.

The Public Relations Manager (PR) will be sophomore Nicky Deitche. Look for her new ideas after this year’s success of the first orchestra meme competition.

The Captains of Interludal Enterprises will be juniors Lara Keim and Alex Clark. Next year they will continue the tradition of introducing pieces at concerts.

The Snake Keepers in charge of all things snacks will be sophomores Margot Curry, Maddy Arch, and junior Jack Arch.