Chamber music performances featuring participants of the CCYO Chamber Music Festival at the Secret Garden Concert

The Charles County Youth Orchestra’s Secret Garden concerts in the beautiful Meditation Garden of Christ Church (112 Charles Street, across from the courthouse) this summer will take place on three consecutive Saturdays, July 16, 23, and 30 at 8:00 p.m.

The concerts will include performances by student ensembles participating in this year’s CCYO Chamber Music Festival as well as CCYO directors and guest artists. Works by the great composers Mozart, Beethoven, JS Bach, Bartok and Handel are among the beautiful pieces to be performed. These family concerts are free and open to the public.

Violinist, Dr. Teri Lazar, director of Prelude Strings; flautist, Dr. Krisztina Noble, director of Encore Strings; bassist, William Hones, guest artist; violist Dr. Osman Kivrak, director of CCYO, and clarinetist Takako Mato, director of Encore Band, performing at one of last year’s Secret Garden concerts. Credit: Rev.Dr. Kate Heichler

This spring, two CCYO string quartets, participants in previous CCYO Chamber Music Festivals, were finalists in the Washington Performing Arts Society’s prestigious Misbin Chamber Music Competition in Washington, DC. And recently, CCYO was featured in an online film by the Charles County Arts Alliance and featured on WTOP radio.

According to CCYO Director Dr. Osman Kivrak, “Participating in CCYO and chamber music helps students develop good work habits: teamwork, social skills, discipline and perseverance while having fun performing great works by composers around the world.

CCYO would like to thank the Rotary Club of Charles County for their generous donation to the 2022 CCYO Chamber Music Festival.

“We are thrilled to be a part of these Charles County Youth Orchestra concerts,” said Reverend Dr. Kate Heichler, pastor of Christ Church. “The arts and the outdoors are essential to the health and well-being of the next generation, and we are proud to support CCYO. We are particularly pleased to invite the public to experience the serenity and beauty of our meditation garden on Church Street – so few people even know it is there, that we have decided to call these performances the concerts of the Secret garden.

Auditions for the 2022-2023 CCYO season will take place in September. Information can be found at:

Even during the pandemic, CCYO and its ensembles were very busy presenting numerous online and in-person outdoor concerts and activities such as chamber music festivals, master classes and concerto competitions.

CCYO is one of Southern Maryland’s largest youth organizations, providing music education and performance opportunities for talented young musicians ages 8-18 in Charles, Prince George’s, St. Mary’s and Calvert counties .

The Charles County Youth Orchestra is sponsored in part by grants from the Charles County Arts Alliance, the Maryland State Arts Council, the Rotary Club of Charles County, MD, the Charles County Charitable Trust, and the Knights of Columbus of Accokeek, MD . Other major contributors include Potters Violins, Gailes Violin Shop, and the Neighborhood Creative Arts Center in La Plata, as well as generous donations from individuals.

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