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Youth Orchestra

BMYSO is dedicated to providing children through young adult college students with musical experience and benefits/rewards that will last a lifetime. The programs instill cooperation, discipline and patience, developing young musicians into appreciative listeners and participants.

Our mission is to provide young dedicated musicians the opportunity to develop advanced ensemble and performance skills that will enable them to grow to their fullest potential as musicians and performers, and in doing so enrich the community through the art of music performance.

We will model excellence in our interactions with students, families, the community, and each other by exemplifying these core values: dedication, professionalism, sensitivity, inclusiveness, passion, respect, and communication.

We currently have three ensembles in our program. Philharmonia is for string players with one year of training to intermediate level, Interlude is for the intermediate level string players, and Youth Symphony is for advanced high school through college level string, wind, and percussion players.

Our vision is that with your support we would grow into 5 different orchestras from all levels and additional chamber groups for advanced students to enrich our community with the arts.

Meet the Conductors

Dr. Everaldo Martinez, Concertmaster

Originally from Honduras, Oscar Everaldo Martinez joined the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony Orchestra as concertmaster and youth orchestra conductor in 2010. Formerly, he was first violinist of the Lubbock Symphony String Quartet and a coach and leader for the Lubbock Youth Orchestra. He has performed with many ensembles throughout the southern United States, including orchestras in Baton Rouge, Jackson (MS), Biloxi, Mobile, Roswell (NM), and Midland-Odessa, as well as performing with opera orchestras in New Orleans and Abilene. Currently, he is on the faculty of several colleges in the Bismarck-Mandan area and he was an instructor of violin and viola for six years at Texas Tech University. In 1997, he was selected as the best young musician in Honduras and was chosen to represent his country in all-Iberian orchestras gathered in Caracas, Venezuela under the auspices of the famed Simon Bolivar Orchestra. Besides being a gifted instrumentalist, Martinez in an enormously talented composer. He began composing at the age of fifteen while a student at the conservatory in Honduras and was selected by competition to participate in the composition program at the Brevard Summer Music Institute, in Brevard, NC in 2002. He has been published by Gebruder Stark Musikverlag & Sons of Leipzig. In May 2011, Dr. Martinez earned his Doctor of Musical Arts in violin performance from Texas Tech University.

Tara Bohlen, Associate Concertmaster
A native of Bismarck, North Dakota. Tara currently serves as associate concertmaster of the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony Orchestra and Interlude youth orchestra conductor of the Bismarck-Mandan Youth Symphony Orchestra. Tara teaches violin and viola in her home studio to students of all ages and abilities. Tara performs as 2nd violin in the Sonorus String Quartet, an ensemble that has held regular concert series as well as performed a television program “Prairie Musicians” on PBS. In 2015 she was featured as a guest soloist with the BMYSO.  She also plays violin with the Missouri Valley Chamber Orchestra.  Formerly, she directed orchestra and Strolling Strings Performance Group at the Bismarck Public Schools. In 2001, she received her Bachelor of Arts in music education from St. Olaf College.  Tara enjoys making music with her husband Josh Bohlen in B-L’Attitude, which is a Christian Rap/violin music duo, playing violin in church and recording music.  Tara and her husband Josh have three daughters.

Dana Van Heukelom, Orchestra Director
A Bismarck native and graduate from Century High School, Dana went on to Minot State University and earned her degree in Music Education in 2011. Dana is in her fifth year of teaching Orchestra for the Bismarck Public Schools. She started teaching at Wachter Middle School as well as several elementary schools. She is currently the orchestra director at Bismarck High School and Wachter Middle School.

Dana is an active member of the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony and is also a member of the American String Teachers Association and the North Dakota Music Educators Association.