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Johnson County students perform with Kingsport Symphony in a unique blending of arts

By Wanda Payne

Sunday afternoon, March 12 was a great day to be in Johnson County as Heritage Hall Theatre was truly excited to host Kingsport’s Symphony of the Mountains in a concert for students and their families.
“A Sound Palette”, conducted by Cornelia Laemmli Orth, was designed to enlighten students to the different “colors” of classical music created by a live, twenty-piece orchestra. The performance also included three visual artists from JCHS, Cristy Dunn and two of her students who demonstrated how the mood of music affects the artist’s rendering. Near the end of the concert, the JAM (Junior Appalachian Musicians) Band, Mike Taylor director, joined the orchestra in playing Tennessee Waltz, and the musicians accompanied JCMS’s Vocal Intensity, under the direction of Nancy Davis, as they sang Mountain Music.
On Monday morning, the orchestra, along with the JAM Band, Vocal Intensity, and the JCHS artists provided the same experience from Sunday afternoon during two performances for the school system’s fifth and sixth grades, and the Middle School who were bused to Heritage Hall.
This wonderfully educational and enriching experience was made possible by a grant from The Johnson County Community Foundation, sponsorship from Farmers Barbecue and Grill, an enthusiastic group of people from the Symphony of the Mountains who wanted to share their music with our students, and the Heritage Hall team who is devoted to offering live musical and dramatic experiences for the people of Johnson County and their surrounding neighbors.