The Goshen College Symphony Orchestra (GCSO), conducted by Brian Mast, will present their spring concert in Sauder Concert Hall on Saturday, April 23. 

This year’s spring repertoire will feature three main pieces from the United States, Japan and Ukraine: John Williams’ Star Wars Suite; Joe Hisaishi’s Spirited Away Suite; and Myroslav Skoryk’s Melody. 

For the second and third movements of the Star Wars Suite, the orchestra will be joined by the Community School of the Arts’ Youth Honors Symphony Orchestra (YHSO).

Ana Neufeld Weaver, a sophomore music education major and YHSO assistant, noted her thoughts on YHSO’s preparation process. 

“These are high schoolers and I have been very impressed by their ability to play all the music,” she said. 

Neufeld Weaver added: “I think they have more of an incentive and drive to work on this music than some of the pieces we have done in the past: one, because it’s Star Wars, and two, because it gave this greater challenge to them. It seems like being able to play with the college orchestra has also been a big motivator too.” 

Neufeld Weaver also commented on the upcoming rehearsals in which the two ensembles will be coming together to play.

“It will be cool for them to get to play in this bigger setting with not just strings but also other instruments,” she said. I think they are looking forward to hearing how that is going to sound because we have only been practicing the string parts and they haven’t ever heard all the brass and [the other non-string parts]. Being able to play alongside college students and hear everything come together will really elevate their experience.” 

Karsten Shaw, a junior music education major and YHSO assistant, shared the overall orchestra atmosphere and how he and other assistants have been encouraging the young musicians. 

“The [students] are feeling nervous,” he said, “but it really isn’t anything that they need to feel nervous about because our orchestra (GCSO) is feeling nervous about it too. We keep reassuring them with that and telling them that this is difficult music even for college students, and it’s impressive that they are doing what they are doing.” 

Tickets ($8 for adults; $6 for seniors/students) can be purchased through the box office at the Goshen College Music Center or online through

Those who would like to view the concert through the livestream can tune in through

COVID-19 precautions will apply for this performance: Face masks are strongly recommended.