ALTON - Calling all Broadway fans. The Alton Symphony Orchestra will host a free Afternoon of Musical Pops concert on Sunday, Feb. 18, 2024, at Hatheway Hall on the Lewis and Clark Community College campus.

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The concert will begin at 3 p.m. with selections from theater favorites like “Swan Lake,” “The Sound of Music," “Hamilton,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “West Side Story” and more. The senior students from the Alton Youth Symphony will also perform, along with up-and-coming violinist Aiden Moon, the Marie Stillwell Concerto Competition Winner. Shane Williams, the maestro of the Alton Symphony Orchestra (ASO), promises a fun time for all community members who come to listen.

“At the Alton Symphony, we want to make the music come alive for all, and that means everybody in the community come and enjoy and just have a great experience,” Williams said.

As a performer and conductor, Williams has an impressive musical resume that he shares with his musicians. He enjoys teaching young musicians like those in the Alton Youth Symphony. It has been rewarding to rehearse with the students and watch them learn from ASO members, many of whom once performed with the Alton Youth Symphony as well.

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“It’s just been an amazing experience, and I try to bring that not only to the Alton Symphony but also to the other young musicians that I work with,” Williams said. “It’s just important that you bring those experiences to the next generation.”

This is partly why ASO is proud to offer the Afternoon of Musical Pops concert free of charge. Williams said there will be a few opportunities to donate to ASO, but the organization decided not to charge a ticket price so that more people can come out and enjoy the music.

In addition to the Afternoon of Musical Pops concert, ASO is also preparing for their Sips & Strings concert at 6 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 23, 2024, at Jacoby Arts Center. This fundraiser includes a wine tasting and a performance by the ASO string quartet, and proceeds go to the orchestra so they can continue to offer free programs and educational opportunities to young musicians. Tickets cost $25 and there is a limited number of spaces available, so purchase your tickets online today to secure your spot.

For more information about the Alton Symphony Orchestra and their programs, visit their official website at AltonSymphonyOrchestra.org. You can also donate online to the orchestra and their work. Williams hopes to see many new and old faces at the Afternoon of Musical Pops concert at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 18, 2024, at Hatheway Hall.

“Just come and enjoy. We just appreciate that you took the time out of your afternoon to come and share it with us,” Williams said. “We would love to fill the hall Sunday afternoon. And I just encourage you, if you have not come to the Alton Symphony before, please come. Be our guest.”

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