ONNY Presents Live Conversation with Anthony McGill

Hailed for his “trademark brilliance, penetrating sound and rich character” (New York Times), clarinetist Anthony McGill is one of classical music’s most recognizable and brilliantly multifaceted figures. In addition to his dynamic international solo and chamber music career, McGill is principal clarinet of the New York Philharmonic—the first African-American principal player in the organization's history. In 2020, McGill was awarded the Avery Fisher Prize, one of classical music’s most significant awards given in recognition of soloists who represent the highest level of musical excellence.

“A Conversation with Anthony McGill” will feature this internationally renowned artist in a 30-minute interview conducted by Kenneth Andrews, Music Director of the Orchestra of Northern New York on Friday, April 23 at 6:00 p.m. Patrons may register to attend the livestream for free by visiting  While registering, there will be an opportunity to submit a question for Mr. McGill.

McGill will share his thoughts about diversity in American orchestras, his thoughts on various concertos that he performs, and respond to questions submitted in advance when viewers register to attend.

He was originally scheduled to appear in ONNY’s spring concert on April 24 and 25, both performances of which were canceled due to the ongoing pandemic. ONNY personnel are hopeful that McGill will be available to solo in an ONNY concert later this year, but confirmation may not be come until late summer.

In the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, McGill launched a powerful musical protest video urging people to #TakeTwoKnees in demonstration against the death of George Floyd and historic racial injustice. His video went viral, and hundreds of artists and citizens amplified the message and responded to the protest with their own videos using the hashtag #TakeTwoKnees.

McGill is an ardent advocate for helping music education reach underserved communities and for addressing issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion in classical music.

A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, McGill previously served as the principal clarinet of the Metropolitan Opera and associate principal clarinet of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. In demand as a teacher, he serves on the faculty of The Juilliard School, Curtis Institute of Music, and Bard College-Conservatory of Music. In fall 2020, he was named Artist-in-Residence at the Cali School of Music at Montclair State University.

He is also a member of the board of directors for the League of American Orchestras, of which ONNY is a member.

Photo credit: Eric Rudd Photography

Sophomore Pianist Wu Wins ONNY Young Artist Competition

When pianist Alex Wu, a Syracuse-area high school student, placed second last year in The Orchestra of Northern New York’s annual James and Katherine Andrews Young Artist Competition, he was happy, but not satisfied. Even the pandemic couldn’t stop him from competing again in 2021 and this time, he achieved his goal of winning top honors in ONNY’s 15th annual competition.

Mr. Wu, 16, is a sophomore at Fayetteville-Manlius High School. He performed the first movement, Allegro, of Beethoven’s Concerto No. 5 in Eb Major, Op. 73, “Emperor” (1809-1811). Not only does he receive the $500 cash prize, but he also will have the opportunity to solo with ONNY, the North Country’s only year-round professional symphony orchestra at a future date to be announced.

For the past nine years, Wu has studied piano privately with John Spradling, Syracuse. His past accomplishments include winning the Onondaga Civic Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition and Golden Key Vienna Music Festival, both in 2019, the CNYAMT Advanced Piano Competition, and the 19th AADGT International Young Musicians Festival. He is the son of Qing Wu and Qinru Qiu, Manlius.

Pianist Victoria Huffman, 15, won Second Place and a $300 cash prize. She, too, studies privately with Mr. Spradling. She performed the first movement of Mozart’s Concerto No. 17 in G Major, K.453 (1784).

Ms. Huffman is a junior at Indian River High School, Philadelphia NY, and is active in her school’s drama club, chorus, and show choir. Last year, she placed second in the CNYAMT Advanced Piano Competition.  She is the daughter of James and Lydia Huffman, Theresa.

Third Place went to violinist Katherine Yu, 16, a junior at Potsdam High School, for which she received $150. She won with a performance of Saint-Saёns’ Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 28 (1863).

She studies violin with John Lindsey, Crane School of Music Professor Emeritus and ONNY Concertmaster, and oboe with ONNY Crane Student Apprentice Cailyn Monastero. She is the daughter of Dennis and Jennifer Yu, Potsdam.

The Young Artist Competition was established in 2007 in memory of James Andrews, father of ONNY Founder, Music Director and Conductor Kenneth Andrews. Its mission is to inspire young musicians to reach their highest level of artistry. The event is open to junior high and high school students in Northern and Central New York as well as the Capital District.

Information about the competition, including rules and regulations and the required repertoire that must be performed from memory, may be found at A brochure and application form for the next competition in  February 2022 will be updated shortly.

The Orchestra of Northern New York, a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit organization, is supported, in part, by the New York State Council, a state agency with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NYS Legislature; and by the Northern New York Community Foundation, whose mission is to improve and enrich the quality of life for all in communities across Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence Counties.

Donations in support of the Young Artist Competition help defray the costs of this event, and are greatly appreciated. To contribute, visit

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Your Support is Instrumental This Season

Dear ONNY Friends,

'Tis the season for giving, and ONNY has been fortunate to receive a few special gifts in recent days that I wish to share with you. Perhaps they will inspire you to make a year-end donation.

Last week’s mail brought a $2,000 check from Jim Parks and Donna Behnke, Potsdam. When I called to thank them personally, Donna explained they usually travel, which is not possible now because of the pandemic. She and Jim decided to donate their travel funds to arts organizations, ONNY being one of the lucky ones.  

Jim and Donna, your gift will help ONNY create beautiful music for people to face the challenges of these day. We sincerely thank you.

A recent phone call from Brenda Healey, Potsdam, resulted in a gift from her family of two pieces of music for the Mozart & McGill concert planned for April. We look forward to welcoming Anthony McGill, internationally-renowned soloist and Principal Clarinet, NY Philharmonic, as the featured soloist for that concert. We are grateful to Brenda and her family for their ongoing support.

Purchasing music or covering rental costs is a great way to help reduce ONNY expenses. The donor’s name is permanently recognized on the work in ONNY’s music library, and acknowledged on the program page of the concert in which it is performed. 

[[{"fid":"521","view_mode":"medium","fields":{"format":"medium","alignment":"left","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false},"type":"media","field_deltas":{"1":{"format":"medium","alignment":"left","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false}},"attributes":{"class":"media-element file-medium media-wysiwyg-align-left","data-delta":"1"}}]]Santa also brought a BIG gift from a donor in San Francisco earlier this year.  Ann Flynn left a message at the ONNY office, inquiring about sponsoring a chair in the Orchestra. I was curious how someone in San Francisco knew about ONNY. Ann explained her family has a summer home in the Thousand Islands. She and her mother, Mrs. Geri Flynn, of Poquoson, VA, attended the August 2019 ONNY concert at the Clayton Opera House, and fell in love with the Orchestra.

Ann decided to donate $2,500 to sponsor a chair in the Orchestra in honor of her mother, who chose ONNY's Principal oboe chair, filled by Anna Hendrickson.

Then, another $2,500 was received to commission a new piece of music about the St. Lawrence River, the shores on which her mother spent her childhood. The piece is made possible by Geraldine Kavanaugh Flynn and her husband, Dr. Charles Flynn, in memory of Clifford and Margaret (Peg) Kavanaugh, Syracuse and Thousand Island Park, NY (shown here).

ONNY violinist, Gretchen Koehler, and NCPR personality and ONNY narrator at our holiday concert a few years, Barb Heller, spoke via Zoom with Mrs. Flynn recently to elicit her memories of growing up on the river. They will incorporate her recollections of the sounds of the river in the new work. It will premiere at three performances of ONNY’s summer Pops concert in July 2021, one of which is tentatively planned to take place at Thousand Island Park on July 2.

The moral of this story - There are many ways to support this cultural gem in the region.

Memorial gifts honor a lost loved one. This year, several friends of the late Eric Thacher, a loyal ONNY concertgoer, made donations in his memory. ONNY and Eric's sons, Jeff and Andy, are grateful for this special remembrance in their father's memory.

ONNY Personnel Manager, Jill Rubio, and ONNY's former Orchestra Librarian, Keith Ziemba, are both monthly donors, as am I. This is an easy way to have an affordable monthly donation add up to a substantial annual gift. Consider joining us as monthly givers.

Other supporters, such as Board Director and Social Media Coordinator, Rebecca Weissman, contributed to ONNY’s Endowment Fund. These donations are matched by the Northern New York Community Foundation, up to $10,000. Thanks, Rebecca, for doubling your gift.

If you enjoyed our new ONNY ONLINE programs, including interesting interviews by Music Director Ken Andrews, fascinating conversations with ONNY's immediate past president Tim Savage, and performances by our talented professional musicians, please consider becoming a sponsor of ONNY ONLINE offerings. Support of this new endeavor is critical because the pool of funds is almost dry! Our sincere thanks to Nikki Coates of Nikki Coates & Associates, Potsdam, and Robert Tarnow of Light Touch Acupuncture, Massena, for their generous support of this effort.

On behalf of the 25,000+ viewers of ONNY ONLINE in just the first three months, I wish to extend sincere gratitude to the following organizations and individuals that provided the seed money to launch this digital initiative in September: NYS Council on the Arts, a state agency, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NYS Legislature; Northern New York Community Foundation; ONNY President Kimberly Busch, and her husband, Gary, Hannawa Falls; her parents, Gary and Mary Ellen Morgan, West Winfield, NY; and Tim Savage, and his wife, Jill, an ONNY musician, Canton. 

Another great way to support ONNY is to purchase The ONNY Family Online Cookbook, First Edition, a fundraising project of ONNY’s Watertown Advisory Committee. You know it's an authentic ONNY publication because musicians submitted the greatest number of recipes AND desserts are the hightest number of submissions!

ONNY also encourages its patrons to shop locally, sustaining small businesses that have been and continue to be generous advertisers and donors. In August, more than 40 businesses donated great prizes for our golf tournament's silent auction and raffles, even in these difficult economic times.  As a result, the proceeds of this fundraiser tripled compared to last year.

Finally, If you do shop on Amazon, please designate ONNY as your charity of choice for AmazonSmile, where a percentage of your purchase is forwarded to the Orchestra.

Regardless of the amount or designated purpose of a gift, a year-end donation to ONNY is much needed and would be greatly appreciated. My sincere thanks to all ONNY supporters, especially those who have already renewed their support in recent weeks. Please consider becoming a cherished patron by making a contribution before December 31st.  Visit for easy online giving, send your gift to PO Box 488, Potsdam, NY 13676, or call me at 315-212-3440 to make a gift with your credit card.

During the busy and sometimes stressful holidays, remember: music is a time-honored and effective self-prescribed therapy. 

Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind,
flight to the imagination and life to everything.

Wishing You and Yours Safe, Happy Holidays, and All the Best in the New Year!


Kathy Del Guidice
Executive Director

WPBS to Broadcast ONNY Holiday Concert December 19

Thanks to an incredible opportunity presented by WPBS based in Watertown, the concert will be broadcast on Saturday, December 19 at 9 p.m.

Mark Prasuhn, WPBS President and General Manager, says: “All of us at WPBS are delighted to be airing the Orchestra of Northern New York’s Holiday concert as part of our schedule of music specials airing throughout the month of December. Showcasing wonderful music of the Christmas season is a long-standing tradition here at WPBS, and it feels especially important to us this year as the COVID pandemic has closed off so many opportunities to celebrate the season as we normally do.”

“ONNY is a much-admired local treasure and does so much for our region. I know this performance will bring joy and inspiration and I look forward to sharing it with our viewers across Northern New York and Eastern Ontario,” Prasuhn added.

The broadcast enables viewers to enjoy the program from the comfort and safety of their homes. Select chamber ensembles from within the Orchestra and a few guests perform beloved seasonal songs and traditional carols. The concert features the Potsdam Brass Quintet, Carriage House Quartet, ONNY Woodwind Trio, The Rubio Duo, and soloist Donald George, tenor.

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[[{"fid":"519","view_mode":"medium","fields":{"format":"medium","alignment":"left","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false},"type":"media","field_deltas":{"6":{"format":"medium","alignment":"left","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false}},"attributes":{"class":"media-element file-medium media-wysiwyg-align-left","data-delta":"6"}}]]The ONNY Woodwind Trio was formed in 2020 with Principal Musicians: Jill Rubio, flute; Julianne Kirk Doyle, clarinet; and Carol Lowe, bassoon. This holiday concert is the trio’s debut performance, in which they perform “March of the Toys” from Babes in Toyland and I Have a Little Dreidel, among other pieces.

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[[{"fid":"520","view_mode":"medium","fields":{"format":"medium","alignment":"left","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false},"type":"media","field_deltas":{"8":{"format":"medium","alignment":"left","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false}},"attributes":{"class":"media-element file-medium media-wysiwyg-align-left","data-delta":"8"}}]]Donald George, an internationally renowned tenor, who has brought North Country audiences to their feet in prior years, presents The Lord’s Prayer and O Holy Night, accompanied by local pianist Jeffrey Hinkle.

Bringing Home the Sounds of the Season is produced with generous support from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NYS Legislature; and Northern New York Community Foundation, whose mission is to improve and enrich the quality of life for all in communities across Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence Counties. Watertown Savings Bank, which has been a generous supporter of ONNY’s holiday concert in Watertown for many years, is the business sponsor of this concert.

ONNY Executive Director, Kathy Del Guidice, asks appreciative viewers to make a donation in lieu of ticket sales to help cover the cost of the program that includes musicians’ fees.

The Orchestra of Northern New York is a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit organization, founded in 1988 by Music Director Kenneth Andrews. Its mission is “to enrich the quality of life for all people, especially youth, in the North Country, Adirondacks, and Southeastern Ontario by inspiring the enjoyment and appreciation of music  through diverse and inclusive, live and online programming by professional musicians.”

Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. To contribute, visit; mail a check, payable to “ONNY,” to PO Box 488, Potsdam, NY 13676; or call Ms. Del Guidice with a credit card at 315-212-3440. For more information, contact her at

ONNY Offers Musical Tribute on Veterans Day

The North Country’s only year-round professional symphony orchestra honors veterans and active duty personnel with a musical tribute this Veterans Day 2020.

The Orchestra of Northern New York has produced a six-minute video, with the help of Massena AMVETS Post 4 members, to thank all Americans who have served or are serving in our armed forces for their dedication and sacrifice.

Each year at its summer Pops concert, the Orchestra performs “Armed Forces Salute,” a medley of theme songs of five of the branches of the armed services. Music Director and Conductor Kenneth Andrews invites veterans and active duty military in the audience to stand and be recognized by those present, a particularly memorable part of each performance as the crowd erupts with applause.

For many years, veterans from Massena AMVETS Post 4 have presented the flags during this musical piece. They do so again in the video from Veterans Memorial Park in Massena. ONNY thanks publicly: Fred Cockayne, Disabled American Veterans Commander; Ken Kells, Post 4 Commander; Tim Mattice, Second Commander; Larry Paige, Sons Officer; and Ken Sequin, American Veterans Officer.

ONNY’s musical tribute will be posted at 8 a.m., Wednesday, November 11th on its website,, and on social media.

During the pandemic, the Orchestra is fulfilling its mission without live concerts for the first time in its 33rd year by offering “New Experiences Through Blended Programming.” Five new ONNY ONLINE programs include interviews of its professional musicians and staff by Music Director Andrews; conversations between donors, board members , and even a Young Artist Competition participant and former Board President Timothy Savage; a variety of performances by ONNY’s professional  musicians; and two programs geared for children - Improv Sessions with ONNY Musicians, coordinated by Massena Central School District Director of Orchestras, Amalio “Mario” Pratti, and free Mini Music Lessons.

All ONNY programs are supported in part by the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NYS Legislature; and the Northern New York Community Foundation, Watertown.

For more information or to make a donation in support of ONNY’s online programs,  contact Executive Director Kathy Del Guidice at 315-212-3440 or

CPA Firm Donation Saves ONNY Thousands of Dollars

The CPA firm of Gray & Gray and Associates, with offices in Canton, Potsdam, Massena and Spring Hill, FL, donated a $3,500 Konica Minolta c364e printer/copier/scanner/fax machine to the Orchestra last year.

ONNY Executive Director Kathy Del Guidice says, “It will save literally thousands of dollars in printing and copying costs. I am so grateful to John and Angela for this generous contribution.” 

John J. Gray, Jr., managing partner of Gray & Gray and Associates, ONNY board member and Finance Committee chair, says:  “Our firm has always been committed to supporting the arts in Northern New York.  This was a unique opportunity for us to assist ONNY where there was a real need. It allowed us to help a valued arts organization with a benefit that would have a positive impact over several years. It was our pleasure to do so.”   John Gray Jr. & Angela Gray, Partners

(Pictured: John J. Gray, Jr. and his business partner, daughter Angela Gray)


Introducing ONNY Online

Dear Friends, 

The entire ONNY family has missed seeing you since we gave our last concert in December 2019. All of us hope that you and yours are safe and healthy.

In recent months, many creative people have been collaborating to develop programming for our 33rd year. It is my pleasure to announce a blended season of traditional live concerts and new digital programs for 2020-2021.

ONNY ONLINE includes five new programs that begin on September 8th on our website, Select segments from these offerings will also appear on Facebook and Instagram, so be sure to follow ONNY on those social media platforms.

Tuesday Talks with the Maestro features interviews with past and present ONNY musicians, soloists and other ONNY personalities. Learn more about the interesting lives of our musicians as well as their thoughts on various aspects of music.

Behind the Scenes of ONNY is hosted by well-known musician, educator and immediate past president of the ONNY Board of Directors, Tim Savage. His conversations with ONNY sponsors, donors, staff, volunteers, even a Young Artist Competition participant, are fascinating. 

Improv Sessions with ONNY Musicians, coordinated by Mario Pratti, ONNY bassist and well-known music teacher in Massena schools, enables young people in Grades 5-12 to express their feelings through music. Each student will receive personalized feedback from ONNY musicians about their improvised piece.  

Mini Music Lessons with ONNY Musicians offer the opportunity for young people and people young at heart to receive a free one-on-one tutorial via a live Zoom session. Visit the ONNY website for details about how to request a lesson.

Finally, don’t miss ONNY Beyond the Stage, short videos in which our professional musicians perform solo or small ensemble works from their home or other settings outside the concert hall. I am confident you will enjoy this inside look at the creative process and these intimate performances.

This year, ONNY’s primary goal is to Manage Change. We wish you well as you, too, face these ever-evolving and challenging times. Be sure to visit often and follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest information about concert venues, dates and times and the new ONNY ONLINE programs.

Watch your email for the invitation to “Toast the Season,” a live Zoom session at 7 pm, Sunday, September 27, when the three-concert season will be announced.

Thank you for your past and continuing support.

Kenneth Andrews

Watertown Advisory Committee Plays Valuable Role

In 2015, the late Michael C. Miller, Watertown, gathered together a group of interested individuals from Watertown to ensure that ONNY concerts would become a part of the fabric of life in that region. Today, Mike’s dream is a reality. 

Last season, 1,600 people purchased tickets to four ONNY concerts in Watertown. Literally thousands of people enjoyed ONNY’s summer pops concert and fireworks at the free Concert in the Park held around July 4th.  The event is sponsored by the City of Watertown and the Watertown Noon Rotary Club.

The twelve-member Watertown Advisory Committee (WAC) meets quarterly.  These dedicated volunteers:

  • Serve as ambassadors for The Orchestra of Northern New York
  • Open doors and build bridges with community groups, businesses and foundations in the area
  • Help solicit sponsorships, program advertising, donations and grants to defray the cost of the annual five-concert Watertown series
  • Provide valuable feedback to the ONNY board and management on everything from programming and operations to marketing and outreach activities.

John Goloski, WAC chair, is a voting member of ONNY’s Board of Directors. Membership is open to anyone in the greater Watertown region who is interested in assisting ONNY in a host of ways. Committee members provide refreshments and even dinner on occasion for musicians before concerts and during intermissions. They also serve as ushers, sell CDs, distribute posters, respond to management’s requests for feedback, and share social media posts.

In 2020, the group is examining their role and relationship with the ONNY Board. They are developing an operations manual for the Committee Chair’s office to minimize the learning curve for future WAC leaders. 

Persons interested in WAC’s mission are asked to contact Goloski at or 315-592-8740.

(Photo: Members of the Watertown Advisory Committee display ONNY reusable tote bags at their last quarterly meeting. They are, left to right, front row:  Emily Sprague, Watertown, retired English teacher from Watertown City Schools; Agnes McCarthy, Philadelphia, director/co-founder of Trillium Music Center and an ONNY violinst; Shannon Zaykoski, Adams, music teacher in the South Jefferson Central School District and an ONNY hornist; Wink Beadel, Wellesley Island, retired Communications Associate at Clayton’s Antique Boat Museum; and Aileen Anderson, Watertown, Grants Management Specialist for the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. Back row:  Richard Lake, Watertown, retired Vice President of Harleysville Insurance Co.; Anita Prather Harvell, Watertown, IT Specialist for Family Morale, Welfare and Recreation on Fort Drum; Clement Wong, Watertown, Financial Officer of the United Way of NNY; Lia Call, Theresa, 7th and 8th grade orchestra teacher at Indian River Middle School and ONNY violist; John Goloski, Theresa, Watertown Advisory Committee chair, 7th and 8th grade band teacher at Indian River Middle School; and John Wrape, Watertown, retired Assistant Superintendent for Instruction in the Watertown City School District. Missing: T. Urling “Tom” Walker, Watertown, retired businessman and former Mayor of the City of Watertown.)

A Black Bottom Line Thanks to Individual & Business Donors, Foundations, and NYSCA

The generous support of 292 individuals, businesses, organizations, foundations, and state agencies totaled $124,541 or 52% of 2019 total income, making it possible for ONNY to finish the year in the black.  These donors enabled the Orchestra to bring high quality orchestra music to the North Country. 

Their generosity allowed ticket prices to remain affordable, with discounted tickets for seniors, military personnel, college students and teens. Children, age 12 and under, are always admitted free to ONNY concerts.    

The Sweetgrass Foundation kindly funded a much-needed project, the re-organization and renovation of one of ONNY’s greatest assets, its music library.   

The Secret Sits Pro Musica Ensembles, Inc. (TSS, Inc.) sponsored the ONNY/Crane Student Apprenticeship Program last year. Thirty-four exceptional Crane students played in one or more concerts, gaining valuable experience performing alongside ONNY’s seasoned musicians. 

The Northern New York Community Foundation continues to demonstrate its support for ONNY in many ways. Once again last year, it awarded $15,000 to The Orchestra to help defray the cost of producing the Watertown concert series. In June, it bestowed a $10,000 matching grant to grow ONNY’s endowment.  Since last June, $3,945 in private donations to the endowment have been matched by NNYCF. Finally, in August, NNYCF authorized a $15,000 grant from the Sidney T. Cox Memorial Fund, held by NNYCF, to fund the season opening concert in Clayton. 

To contribute to the endowment matching campaign, contact Executive Director Kathy Del Guidice at or 315-267-3251.

The New York State Council on the Arts approved a three-year $57,000 grant, payable at $19,000 per year, for musicians fees. ONNY strives to hire the best musicians in the region to perform for its audiences.

Finally, ONNY learned in December that its application for a Workforce Development grant to transition its part-time executive director position to a full-time one was approved. The $37,500 two-year grant was issued by the New York State Council on the Arts and Regional Economic Development Council (NYSCA/REDC).

On behalf of the entire Board, thank you to all our supporters. We simply couldn’t do it without you!

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A Message from ONNY Board President, Kimberly Busch

Dear Friends,

As I begin a two-year term as President of the ONNY Board of Directors, I wish to thank our sponsors, donors, advertisers, audience members, musicians, volunteers and staff for their past support. As we navigate a world-wide pandemic, the ONNY Board is committed, first and foremost, to protecting the health and safety of our musicians and audience members, then determining how best to proceed with live music-making onstage.

Our Music Director Kenneth Andrews, Executive Director Kathy Del Guidice, and Personnel Manager Jill Rubio are working diligently, researching the latest recommendations from the CDC and best practices from the League of American Orchestras and other professionals in the field. Although ONNY cannot present live concerts at this time, we will fulfill ONNY’s mission of “enriching the quality of life in Northern New York” and inspiring “the enjoyment and appreciation of music” in new and creative ways. Online programs are being developed that we expect to launch in late summer/early fall. These offerings will include interviews with our musicians, solo or chamber performances by ONNY musicians, play-along musical improvisation activities, and more. 

I would like to sincerely thank Tim Savage for his excellent leadership as President of ONNY’s Board of Directors for the last nine years. His knowledge, passion and calm demeanor have been one of the secrets of the Orchestra's success. I am grateful that he will remain on the Board this year to help ensure a smooth transition. The other 2020-2021 ONNY officers are: Vice President Vicki Day (Hermon), Treasurer Mary Jane Watson (South Colton), and Secretary Adrienne Hartman (Potsdam).

ONNY board members are dedicated and engaged volunteers. I am excited and humbled to work with this amazing team as we explore new ways to bring orchestral music to North Country communities and lead our dedicated volunteers and talented musicians to a “new normal.” These are challenging times, but I believe the Orchestra will endure - with your support. Please give generously when we undertake our annual appeal in the coming months.


Kimberly Busch
ONNY Board President


Photo Credit: Justin Sorensen, Watertown Daily Times (ONNY Pops Concert)