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One of the many clubs on campus this year is a club named Allegro!. Allegro! members can purchase tickets to many Ogden Symphony and Ballet Association events at a fraction of the cost. In addition, Allegro! provides a pre-concert reception, including refreshments and a venue to talk with other Allegro! members, to those purchasing tickets through the club. In the future, the Allegro! presidency hopes to offer other discounted events for its members, including lectures and video screenings.
Robert Fudge, an associate professor of philosophy, is the club’s director. Several years ago, Fudge became involved with the OSBA, volunteering with the Youth Guild, a program through which teens can volunteer at OSBA events and receive entrance. After volunteering with the Youth Guild, Fudge became a member of the board of directors for the OSBA.
As a board member, Fudge saw an opportunity to reach out to college students and give them a chance to attend performances by the OSBA.
“I thought that one thing we would want to do is build audiences of the future, so that means making college kids and high school kids aware of these opportunities and making it as accessible as possible,” Fudge said. “So I started (Allegro!) here on campus, and this is our third year. It’s been very successful so far.”
Fudge said that while symphonic music and ballets might not be standard entertainment for college students, Allegro! provides opportunities to see professional performers at a reasonable price.
“One of the pleasant surprises for me is that when I tell my students about it, they’re really excited about it; they didn’t know that the Utah Symphony and Ballet West come to Ogden, much less to campus, and they can come to concerts for $5,” he said. “It’s a great opportunity to be exposed to one of the premier performing arts groups in the state.”
Katie Johnson, a senior studying vocal performance and a former officer for Allegro!, said she enjoys attending Allegro! events not only for the performances, but for the fun and the friends she’s made at the events.
“Allegro! isn’t meant for only music majors; it’s for anyone on campus interested in classical music and dance,” Johnson said. “As a result, there are a lot of different types of people that come to Allegro! events. All the different people bring something new to conversations and provide a really fun dynamic at the pre-concert receptions.”
Marianne Asmus, a junior studying string pedagogy and the current student president for Allegro!, said that not only does Allegro! offer discounted tickets to OSBA events to college students, it also does outreach programs with public schools in the area, encouraging students to attend classical performances, even offering free tickets to K–12 students.
“Most of the time, young people don’t know about it, don’t care about it, didn’t grow up going to it, so we’re trying to get the word out about it so that we can get younger kids and more students to attend the symphony,” Asmus said.
The next Allegro! event is on Sept. 12, when the Ogden Symphony will present Beethoven’s Triple Concerto at 7:30 p.m. in the Val A. Browning Center, with a pre-concert reception at Fudge’s home at 6 p.m. Tickets and more information about the club can be found on the Allegro! Facebook page, as well as from Fudge or any of the current Allegro! officers.