Musicians of the Fort Worth Symphony Newsletter
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We wish you all a happy and healthy new year!
As we turn the corner into 2016, the Musicians of the FWSO look forward with hope to what the coming year will bring. Every year, we renew the same resolutions - to bring to the stage our very best performances concert after concert; to make our music speak to you with meaning, enriching your lives in different ways; and to connect with more of you on a personal level off stage.

Without you, our audience, we would not be able to make these pledges, so we thank you for giving us the opportunity and thank you for your continued support!
Contract negotiations are still ongoing as we end 2015.  Our negotiating team has made progress, but there are many issues that still need to be discussed.  For more information on negotiations, please visit our website.  

Meet a Musician

Ed Jones, Principal Tuba

How old were you when you started playing your instrument?
I started playing tuba when I was nine years old.

Jewell, Kansas, population 600!
Bachelor of Music Education from Fort Hays State University,
Masters in Tuba performance from Texas A&M-Commerce.
Additional post graduate work at the University of North Texas

In a few words or sentences, how would you describe yourself? 
Beside playing the tuba, I teach at the University of Texas at Arlington.  I love both eating and cooking barbecue, and I make ribs that have been known to make grown men weep!  I have been a life long aviation buff and am only a few hours shy of completing a private pilot's license.  I also enjoy starting and occasionally completing DIY projects at home.
To me, there is no greater thrill than performing with the FWSO.  I grew up listening to my grandfather's record collection, so for me, joining the orchestra in 2001 was a dream come true.  My entire family is actively involved in music and the FWSO is central to our lives.  My wife Carol is an elementary music teacher and brings her students to concerts at Bass Hall.  Our son Andrew is a graduate student in tuba at the Cincinnati Conservatory and has actually substituted for me.  Our daughter Allie will be graduating from Texas Tech with degrees in dance and accounting.  Dance is her passion and she has always attended FWSO concerts and ballet performances.  I am so fortunate to count the talented musicians of the Symphony as my colleagues and friends.  It's like going to work with a big extended family. 
Fun fact 
My predecessor in the FWSO, Don Little, was also my teacher in graduate school and he was my son's teacher as an undergraduate.
Inspirational Kids
Working with Kids Who Care

The FWSO recently started a partnership with the fantastic local musical theater group Kids Who Care. We enjoy working with these children immensely - no matter what age, they each approach their roles with the utmost professionalism, enthusiasm and joy. Equally gratifying for us, however, is that we have found that through these talented children, we are able to engage our younger audiences on an even deeper level as seeing their peers interact easily with us only reinforces our connection and messages. So we salute you all at Kids Who Care and thank you for all your hard work!  Here is what Kristen Thiebaud from the Kids Who Care organization said when we asked if the experience is as meaningful to them as it is to us. 

"Kids Who Care is thrilled to expand the performances with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra for the 2015/2016 Season!  For the second year, Kids Who Care will join the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra for the Young Persons Concerts: Visions of America, Kinderconcerts: My Many Colored Days, and the Family Concert: Peter and The Wolf.  

The partnership between the Kids Who Care cast and the FWSO musicians creates a connection with the young audience members that is an obvious fit. The energy that is felt throughout the audience solidifies the research that music and education go hand in hand as each set of young eyes eagerly watch the performances between musicians and actors.

For Kids Who Care, and the mission of providing skill specific arts education to students, this relationship is a gift. The year round education at Kids Who Care offers a variety of classes including early childhood education, dance, acting technique, vocal performance, and now opportunities to work with Assistant Conductor Daniel Black and the talented musicians of the FWSO. The students who train at Kids Who Care don’t take this opportunity for granted. Upon arrival for the Young Persons’ concert this January, 15 year old Mya Bryant’s eyes scanned the empty Bass Hall from the stage for the very first time. Mya held her hand to her heart, and with tears in her eyes said, “This, THIS, is a moment!”  

The kids selected to participate in the Symphony performances were chosen from the 2015/16 Kids Who Care Resident Company, with a rotation of cast throughout the three performances to offer the opportunity to as many children as possible.

In addition to this relationship with the FWSO, the Kids Who Care Resident Company tours original musicals across the community and around the world. Performances range from professional venues, places of power, and most importantly, places that matter. The tour is perfect as a full theatre production in a regional theatre, as a keynote for conventions and corporate meetings, or as spotlight performance at galas, community events, fundraising events and school assemblies. The entrepreneurial style of leadership at Kids Who Care, combined with a skill specific arts education and compassionate staff, is producing great community leaders.

Visit, and plan on attending performances this spring, summer and fall in the historical Scott Theatre."

Come and experience this magic at our performance of Prokofiev's "Peter and the Wolf" at White's Chapel in Southlake on Sunday January 17th at 3pm. This short concert is appropriate for kids of all ages! Tickets are available here or at the door.

Father and Son
The Beat Goes On

 By Keith Williams, Principal Percussion

Keith Willams and his father, Chris, at "Home for the Holidays" in Bass Hall.

As principal percussionist, I was able to hire my dad to sub with the orchestra. As a section of one, I am always in need of subs and my dad comes highly qualified. You see, my dad is the principal percussionist and assistant timpanist of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, a position he has held since 1978.

I hired him for our annual Home for the Holidays pops concert Thanksgiving weekend in Bass Hall. It worked out well because I needed a percussionist who also plays drumset, a skill few do well. Fortunately for me, he is one of those few and really enjoys playing set with an orchestra. It was very fun to share the stage with him again. Last year, he hired me many times as a sub with the Baltimore Symphony so I have played many times with him on stage, but he was always principal. Even though I am principal here in Fort Worth and he is the extra, I still asked for his thoughts on balance and sound concepts throughout the weekend. It was a highlight to once again hear his musicality and sensitivity on accessories and drum set alike.

Have you gotten your T-shirt yet? These shirts were beautifully designed by our principal violist Laura Bruton. They are $20 each, adult sizes S-3X, and can be purchased online by emailing orders to us at

We will also sell them at select venues, so stay tuned to our Facebook page to find out when and where we'll be!

Pictured are FWSO musicians Seth McConnell, timpani, and Keira Fullerton, cello.
Thank you to the many substitute musicians who performed with us this month! 
Harmony in the Kitchen 

This recipe was provided by Cara Owens, bassoonist. Here is a note from her:

"These biscuits were a childhood staple of mine.  Eggs, sausage, and something sweet on Saturday mornings…to fortify us before a day of CHORES!  I, in turn, made these for my girls on Saturday mornings.  One girl dipped them in the butter, and the other rolled them in the sugar….they loved to lick their fingers afterward!"

Easy Sugar Biscuits
2 cups Bisquick
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup milk
1 egg
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup sugar
Heat oven to 400. Mix Bisquick, sugar, and spices, Add milk and egg, and mix thoroughly. Fill GREASED muffin cups 1/2 full. Bake 12-15 minutes. Dip biscuits in melted butter and roll in sugar. Makes 10-12 biscuits.
Copyright © 2016 Musicians of the Fort Worth Symphony, All rights reserved.

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