ESYO to present Playathon

All day event to showcase area talent at Crossgates

ALBANY — Hundreds of Empire State Youth Orchestra Musicians will share their love of music with the Capital Region community during the 2020 All-Day “Playathon” on level one at Crossgates Mall on Saturday, Feb. 1, from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The event, which is a fundraiser for the organization, features 13 musical ensembles that include everything from classical to percussion to jazz. This year a fundraising goal is set at $65,000. Even though the event is designed to raise money, it is free to anyone in the community who wants to enjoy music on that day.

The annual Playathon is the organization’s largest and most important fundraiser and is also the only time that all of the performing ensembles come together, on one day, to share their musical talent with the public. The Playathon is sponsored by Albany Medical Center, University at Albany Foundation, and Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman and Dicker LLP.

Music Director Carlos Agreda is very excited about this event.

“Playathon represents a valuable opportunity to increase awareness about ESYO and to have a relaxed and direct connection with the community,” Agreda said. “Some members of the community might not realize how much they love classical music, and if they aren’t able to come to the concert hall then we will come to their space.”

He said at Playathon, the organization wants “to provide exposure and show how fun symphonic music actually is. It’s a chance to see all our ensembles in action and for people to see how much the young musicians love playing music.”

The marathon musical event helps ESYO ensure no qualified musician is ever turned away because of the inability to pay.

“Our Playathon raises critical funds to support scholarships and tuition assistance so that all youth may pursue musical excellence and have serious fun, too,” said Rebecca Calos, who is ESYO’s executive director.

The day includes the John Keal Music Company’s Instrument Petting Zoo and also live auctions so that someone in the audience has the opportunity to conduct one of the ensembles.

Additional information about ESYO’s program and concerts can be found at esyo.org.

The performance schedule is as follows: 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. — percussion ensembles.

11:30 to 11:45 a.m. — concertino strings (Dave Beck conducting).

11:55 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. — string orchestra, with auction to conduct ensembles.

12:35 to 1:15 p.m. — wind orchestra and choirs, with auction.

1:25 to 2:05 p.m. — CHIME (Yates, VC, Proctors).

2:20 to 2:50 p.m. — symphony orchestra, with auction.

2:55 to 3:25 p.m. — repertory orchestra, with auction.

3:30 to 4:05 p.m. — symphony orchestra, with auction.

4:20 to 4:40 p.m. — repertory jazz orchestra.

4:45 to 5:05 p.m. — youth jazz orchestra.

5:20 to 5:50 p.m. — repertory orchestra, with auction.

5:55 to 6:30 p.m. — symphony orchestra, with auction.

More information about ESYO’s program and concerts can be found at esyo.org.