Willmar Area Symphonic Orchestra invites you to a night at the movies

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— It will sound like a night at the movies when the Willmar Area Symphonic Orchestra take to the stage for its special summer concert at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 28, at the Willmar Education and Arts Center.

The orchestra, which will be celebrating its 65th anniversary this fall, plans to play a selection of music from some of the best known blockbusters. Concertgoers will most likely recognize the scores from Beauty and the Beast, Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl, Jurassic Park, Apollo 13, Titanic and the themes from such hits as Mission Impossible, Wild, Wild West and more.

The concert will also feature solos from two of the orchestra's musicians. Nick Mason, on trumpet, will be featured in the Apollo 13 selection. In addition to being a member of WASO, Mason also teaches music at New London-Spicer Schools.

Also to be featured is the orchestra's concertmaster Lisa Zeller, who is also the orchestra director for grades 4, 5 and 6 at Willmar Public Schools. She will be playing the violin solo for the piece Tango (Por Una Cabeza), which has been used in many movies over the years, including Schindler's List.

Tickets for the concert can be purchased online at


or at the door. Prices are $10 for adults and free for those under 18, though they must still have a ticket for entry.

WASO was established in March 1957 by Dr. Lawrence and Margaret Opsahl. For nearly 65 years, it has been a cornerstone in the Willmar area arts scene, bringing together music lovers of all ages and backgrounds. It is currently led by Stephen Ramsey, who took over as music director and conductor in the fall of 2016.

The orchestra includes strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion instruments, and is always looking for new members to join. Currently, there is a need for string instruments. WASO practices weekly at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the WEAC. Interested musicians can contact the orchestra at willmarorchestra@gmail.com for more information.