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Wow – it’s finally here: this week, we leave on tour. In a few short days, we’ll be in Salzburg, walking the same streets as Mozart.

The students are rehearsing now, and they sound ready. We handed out the tour tshirts and uniform garment bags today at rehearsal. I finished the tour concert programs today – in German! That was the last thing on my to-do list of consequence. I think we’re ready to go.

Tomorrow night is the Bon Voyage concert at the new Volcano Vista High School Performing Arts Center, at 7:00 p.m. It's free and I hope we have a nice audience to send off the AYS.

I got this nice note today from Joan, who is the mom of Ivan:

I know everyone is very busy preparing for the tour.....

I woke up this morning and remembered that three years ago Ivan had just auditioned for the AYS program for the very first time. He and I went together to hear the AYS "farewell" concert before the kids left for Australia. It was very different from the Jefferson Middle School beginning orchestra concert that he had played in a few days before.

On that day I really didn't imagine this day!

Thanks! I am just so amazed at what the kids can accomplish with your help and support.


It’s been a great season. The students and their parents have worked hard. Musically, it’s been a great year. We have raised and earned a lot of money for the tour, and gotten to know each other better in the process. I want to take a minute to thank the AYS Parent Association officers, who have given hundreds of hours of their time this year to be sure that everything went well so far – and will help execute what promises to be a very memorable tour:
John and Glenda Mathes
Mark and Kathy Wade
Les Field and Gia Scarpetta
Jae and Julanie Lee
Rounding out the chaperones for the trip are Lorena Parra (a registered nurse and former AYSPA officer, with lots of touring experience), Mr. Gordon and myself. We are all excited and ready for the tour. I hope to see you tomorrow night at the Bon Voyage concert!