Grady Orchestra Pulls Strings for Carnegie Hall Trip


Georgia Public Broadcasting

This year, the Grady Philharmonic Orchestra will be traveling to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall. On Tuesday, April 11, the Orchestra will depart from Atlanta on a charter bus. The following day, the orchestra will rehearse with highly respected musicians, including Frank Battisti, Craig Kirchhoff, Charles Peltz and H. Robert Reynolds. Later that day, they will attend a Broadway Show and engage in a sightseeing excursion to either the Statue of Liberty or the Empire State Building. At 10:30am on Friday, April 14, the orchestra will play their highly anticipated concert at Carnegie Hall. Later, they will receive an audio recording of the performance, photos and commemorative certificates.

The whole trip is scheduled to take place between April 11 and April 15, but some complications have arisen regarding scheduling. The first major complication is that Spring Break ends two days before the start of the trip, which would make it difficult for many students to prepare for the AP exams the following week. This could be a deal breaker for some who previously planned to attend the trip.

The cost of the trip will also be a big hurdle to jump through by April. Right now, the cost of the tour, based on three nights hotel accommodation in quadruple occupancy rooms is

$1,039 per student. The Grady Booster Club has already paid a deposit of $1,500 towards the total cost, which will be equally applied to each student’s portion. The Charter Bus transportation is $7,400. Luckily, the APS Gifted department will pay 4,400 dollars of that sum.

The second complication lies in the fact that this year’s Prom is on April 15, which is the same Saturday that the orchestra would be departing for Grady. This, at first, was also a deal breaker for a few musicians. Also, taking the charter bus back get us to Atlanta at 5am on Easter Sunday could be an obstacle for some students. Flying home on Friday to make it to Prom would work, but the costs for flying back, on top of the high costs for the trip, would be pretty steep. Fortunately, there are a lot of good fundraising options. For the past few weeks, the musicians have been selling chocolate, which has proven to be fairly lucrative. Additionally, there is the possibility of getting frequent flyers tickets for those wish to attend Prom.

Despite these complications, the orchestra remains fairly optimistic about the trip.
“I’m really excited to see our orchestra do something big in New York,” said Walden Jones, a member of the Philharmonic Orchestra who will be attending the trip. “It’s gonna be super exciting to see the sights and play at Carnegie Hall with a bunch of cool people from the orchestra.”