News & Notes - February 2015

From the SVA President

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As you probably know, it’s been a very exciting week at the St. Louis Symphony!  On Sunday, the Orchestra won its 7th Grammy award for “Best Orchestral Performance” for their 2013 recording of John Adams’ City Noir.   There has been quite the buzz in St. Louis, around the country and even internationally.  In addition, on Wednesday, our new President and CEO was announced. Marie-Hélène Bernard will officially step into the role on July 1, 2015.  If you haven’t read about her experience and impressive career, click here to learn more. 

Are you an ambassador for the STL Symphony and the Symphony Volunteer Association (SVA)? You would be amazed at how easy it is to get people in your exercise group, church group, garden club, or family party to come to a concert at Powell Hall and maybe even to consider joining the SVA. Patty and Jeff Kaplan have recruited 4 very good prospective members within the last month. 

Why is building membership important? January through Memorial Day week-end are our busiest volunteer months – although August through December are not shabby either.  Our newest volunteers are often our most enthusiastic about wanting to help. In the next months ahead we will be celebrating Picture the Music with judging, an awards ceremony, and creating art displays of the winning art all over the St. Louis Metropolitan Area. Instrument Playground needs 8 – 10 volunteers on every one of their presentations, and they are doing many right now. Express the Music is tuning up for an active February, March, and April. Gypsy Caravan will need 250 volunteers come Memorial Day weekend. 

In the meantime the Communications Committee is busily writing and taking pictures of everything we do.

Do we need more volunteers? The answer is, “Yes!” we do need lots of volunteers. Can you recruit a new volunteer? If you do recruit someone new, you may be volunteering side by side with one of your best friends. What fun!

Do you shop at Schnucks? If so, you can support the STL Symphony every time you pay your grocery bill. Get a free eScrip Community Card at the store and designate the Symphony as your preferred organization (Group ID 500006368) by registering your card at 800-931-6258 or by going online ( When you check out, just give the card to the cashier and a portion of your grocery bill will be donated to the Symphony. 

Sara Fabick
St. Louis Symphony Volunteer Association
p: 314-822-1183


Are you planning to attend the SVA Winter Membership Meeting and Brunch on Saturday, March 7 at Meadowbrook Country Club? Thank you to Linda Stark for sponsoring this event. John Easley, interim STL Symphony Co-President and VP of Development will speak and bring you up to date on STL Symphony happenings.  Thomas Jostlein, Associate Principal French Horn, and enthusiastic supporter of the SVA will perform.  The next SVA President will be introduced.  Don’t miss this fun, mid-day event. There will be valet parking.

The Printed SVA Directory and the On-Line Directory and are two of the greatest tools we have to offer SVA members because we can contact members so easily.  Do you have your latest directory?]

If you did not receive your 2014-2015 Membership DirectoryYou will be able to pick up a copy of the latest SVA Directory at the Winter Membership Meeting, or you can stop by the Powell Hall Boutique (open one hour before concerts and at intermission)

As of September 1, 2014, the minimum gift to the Friends of the Symphony which includes  SVA membership is $75.  Is your membership up to date?


Picture the Music

The Picture the Music Awards Ceremony will be Wednesday, February 25 at 7:00 pm.  The artwork will be displayed at Powell Hall for the concerts the following two weekends.  From March 10 – April 23 the artwork will be displayed at Plaza Frontenac, St Peters, Cultural Arts Centre, Schlafly Library, and the Magic House.  Working with St. Louis arts and government institutions has been a great experience for all involved.  Thank you to all the PTM Committee who is volunteering to make this program happen.

Contact Janice Seele if you want to join this well-run committee.

Instrument Playground

Instrument Playground is supporting Tiny Tunes On Stage Concerts for pre-schoolers, STL Symphony Family Concerts and making one presentation at City Academy and two at Dewey School.  Busy, busy, busy!

Bus Ambassadors

Marilyn Gordon’s Bus Ambassadors will be showing off their new vests at the upcoming Education Concerts.  Under the direction of Cynthia Schon, STL Symphony’s Director of Facilities, the Symphony volunteers will be outside welcoming the students, teachers, and family patrons, helping to guide them into Powell Hall, and helping to make their trip to an Education Concert an experience they will never forget.  How do we know they will remember?  Because the most frequent comment heard about first trips to Powell Hall is that patrons remember coming as a child to these programs!  It seems as if the concerts keep getting better and better, too, with each passing year.  Thank you, smiling ambassadors, who know just how to dress for St. Louis’ varying weather conditions and how to welcome guests of all ages.


Visit the Boutique in Powell Hall, and you will see a lot of smiling faces.  Patrons and volunteers working at the Boutique are pleased with the latest new items added to the inventory.  Have you seen the Powell Hall celebratory ornament honoring the 135th anniversary of the STL Symphony?  Don’t think of it as a Christmas ornament but as a representation of your favorite St. Louis Arts Institution - Powell Hall itself.  Another new item is a wonderful poster celebrating the 50 members of the orchestra who are being featured as solo or ensemble artists in this 135th year.   These concerts are so special featuring are own musicians and so is the poster!  Stop by the Boutique to see it.  Thank you Ellen and Dennis Brommelhorst and your loyal volunteers who never fail to welcome patrons to the beautiful Powell Hall foyer and our attractive shop.


Parties of Note

Tickets remain for one upcoming Parties of Note.

Don’t miss the opportunity to see and hear Amy Kaiser talk about her pride and joy – The STL Symphony Chorus.  If you have never heard Amy Kaiser lecture, you are really missing a great opportunity.  From this last Party of Note, you will come away smiling, laughing, ready to read a good new book she has suggested, and probably humming a tune. 

#26 Secrets of the Chorus

Go to the website  and get your tickets today for a fun evening to see and be seen!  What’s not to like?

Gypsy Caravan

On Monday, May 25, 2015 one of the country’s largest one day flea markets – the 43rd SVA Gypsy Caravan – will be held.  Larger and more shuttle buses; improved parking; increased number of indoor vendors’ booths; more aisle space inside the arena; more inside bathrooms; more ATM’s; longer Peak and Purchase Preview Party on Sunday evening preceding the Memorial Day event are just a few of the changes being made. Once the two day gypsy shopping tents go up, the fun begins.  Volunteering is fun, too,  at Gypsy Caravan.  Please plan to come and support Chairs Jane and Kent McNeil and Vice Chair Bev Cox in putting on the SVA’s largest fundraiser for the STL Symphony. 

SVA Office Location and Directions

Centene Center for Arts and Education
3547 Olive St., Suite 370
St. Louis, MO 63103
Office Hours: 9:00am-5:00pm

Upcoming Events

Express the Music Intake of Student Essays
February 12, 2015 - 12:00-3:00pm - Centene Center for Arts and Education

Gypsy Steering Committee Meeting
Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 4:30-6:00pm - Home of Jane and Kent McNeil

STL Symphony Coffee Concert
February 20, 2015 - 10:30am - Powell Hall

ETM Judging Day
February 21, 2015 - 9:00am – 1 - Centene Center for Arts and Education

STL Symphony Family Concert (IP Event)
February 22, 2014 - 2:00pm - Powell Hall

PTM Awards Ceremony
Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 7:00pm - Powell Hall

SVA Executive Committee
February 26, 2015 - 10:30am – 12:00pm -Centene Center for Arts and Education

Winter Membership Meeting
Saturday, March 7 - 10:00am – 12:00pm - Meadowbrook Country Club


total volunteer hours
contributed during the 2014/15 season (as of 01/31/15)