September 9, 2019
AUSTIN, Texas – While Austin has a reputation for a deep love and support of live music like ACL and SXSW, you might be surprised to learn that Austin also has bragging rights to the oldest continuous symphony in Texas: the Austin Symphony Orchestra (ASO), founded in 1911. The Women’s Symphony League (WSL) was founded sixty-six years ago to provide service and financial support to ASO and its programs. Over the years, that included offering educational opportunities for children and the community to develop their appreciation for music. WSL’s projects and fundraising ability have grown significantly as its leaders inspire a love of music in the next generation. This year’s New Member class hit an all-time high of 77 ladies, the majority of whom reside in West Austin neighborhoods.
The WSL has donated millions of dollars to the ASO over the years, impacting over 70,000 AISD children every year through its eleven different programs. WSL honors its dedication to the school children of Central Texas through its signature Children’s Day Art Park which includes the instrument petting zoo interactive percussion, instrument crafting and live music, of course. Previously held outside in the Symphony Square Amphitheater, Art Park moved into the air conditioning at the new Austin Central Library last summer. The Wednesday morning events in June and July were wildly successful, creating marvelous musical memories for Austin families. The WSL looks forward to serving school age children this school year through its Halloween concert series and Young People’s Concerts which over 24,000 Central Texas students will experience in 4th-6th grade.
The WSL also offers programs that are popular with Austin’s teen community. Both the WSL’s Youth Leadership Program and Soiree, a semi-formal dance that draws high school attendees from across Austin, offer youth a great way to engage in community service, develop their leadership skills, and have fun with friends in the process. Over 200 freshmen and sophomores attended this year’s “The Sound of Soirée,” which took place on Labor Day. YLC kicked off its year with an event on August 18 at West Austinite Lauree’ Moffett’s beautiful home on Lake Austin.
This year’s 65th Anniversary Jewel Ball will take place on Saturday, September 21 at Palmer Events Center. There will also be a Friday Fashion Luncheon, featuring Hollywood legend Brooke Shields as keynote speaker Jamie Chandler, CEO of Rank & Style, as moderator, with fashions from Julian Gold.
Tickets for the Jewel Ball and Fashion Luncheon along with applications for YLC are available online at www.wslaustin.org. Recruiting for the next membership year will begin in January. Please email [email protected] for more information.