The McLean Orchestra has named Gerald Fowkes the Music Director of its McLean Youth Orchestra (MYO). He has begun his duties over the summer and will conduct rehearsals and concerts beginning in September. He also will hold auditions at The Old Firehouse in McLean on Sept. 10. Fowkes is currently Director of Orchestras at Fairfax County High School. Prior to his tenure at Fairfax, he taught at Gar-Field High School, Woodbridge Senior High school and Stonewall Middle School. As a member of the artistic staff of the Youth Orchestras of Prince William, Fowkes is the conductor of the Concert Orchestra. He has conducted All-County Orchestras in Albemarle, Fauquier, Loudoun, Prince William, Spotsylvania, and Stafford Counties and the 2014 VBODA District X Senior Honor Orchestra and 2016 VBODA South East.
Fowkes is a graduate of Louisiana State University where he graduated summa cum laude in Cello Performance. He is an alumnus of both the Youth Orchestras of Prince William and the American Youth Philharmonic, and is a past Virginia Governor’s Scholar at the National Music Camp in Interlochen, Mich.
The McLean Orchestra, led by Music Director Miriam Burns, is the fully-professional orchestra in the McLean area, and recently completed its 46th season of presenting fine orchestra repertoire. The MYO comprises auditioned high-school age musicians, who rehearse weekly during the school year and perform three concerts in the community building of Vinson Hall in McLean. Concerts include classical orchestra and concerto repertoire, giving young musicians high level ensemble and performing experience. These concerts are free to the community. The younger Repertory Orchestra of the MYO gives middle school musicians high-quality ensemble training, under the leadership of Veronica Jackson.
On Sept. 25 the McLean Orchestra will change its name to the Tysons McLean Orchestra. After 46 years of performing and now becoming a fully professional orchestra, this group finds itself in a position to need larger performance venues and increased support from the business community and residents from the growing Tysons area. The Tysons McLean Orchestra hopes to perform at some new performing arts centers planned for Tysons in the future. The Youth Orchestra will always be a part of the Tysons McLean Orchestra and the young musicians will have continued opportunities to perform side by side with the adult orchestra.