Arts & Entertainment

Westfield’s NJ Festival Orchestra Featured on NJTV’S ‘State of the Arts’ This Weekend

NJ Festival Orchestra Music Director David Wroe with students from Newark Arts High School. Credits: NJFO

WESTFIELD, NJ — The New Jersey Festival Orchestra, based in Westfield and a frequent performer at Ridge PAC, will be featured on the Emmy award-winning NJTV program “State of the Arts” this Sunday, June 28, in a seven-minute documentary titled “David Wroe conducts Carmina Burana.” The program showcases the NJFO’s season finale concert last month.

“In particular, I was interested in exploring the collaboration between the NJFO, conductor David Wroe and Newark Arts High School. I did not know that they have been working together for several years. They come from very different backgrounds and yet are united by their love of music,” said “State of the Arts” producer Eric Schultz. “Also, I think Orff's ‘Carmina Burana’ is such a terrific and dramatic piece and thought the NJFO performed it beautifully.”

The program focuses on Wroe’s leadership of the massive collaboration behind this concert that featured guest soloists, Pro Arte Chorale, Newark Arts High School Chorus and Basking Ridge High School Acappella Honors Choir. It also profiles Wroe himself, covering his early days as choir boy at Ripon Cathedral in England to his work as assistant conductor at Boston Symphony Orchestra to his leadership of the NJFO and activity on the national and international conducting circuits.

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“I think people will be surprised to learn how many different kinds of concerts the NJFO is involved in, and the variety of venues,” said Schultz. “They play classical concerts, popular shows, they accompany silent movies, opera. They recently performed with Don Rickels! They seem to be on the move at a time when many other orchestras are struggling.”

“State of the Arts,” which goes on location with creative personalities and organizations throughout New Jersey, is produced by the NJ Council on the Arts in cooperation with PCK media. The series also airs on WHYY in Philadelphia.

Catch “David Wroe conducts Carmina Burana” on NJTV on Sunday at 8 p.m.

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