Stories » Give me your best Yo-Yo Ma impression / Elgin Courier-News - Chicago Tribune

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Give me your best Yo-Yo Ma impression / Elgin Courier-News - Chicago Tribune

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Andrew Grams acknowledged what was obvious to many Wednesday morning: the 8:30 a.m. start time was perhaps too early for orchestra rehearsal. "It's early for me, I like to sleep in," the director of the Elgin Symphony Orchestra told the more than 60 Larkin High School orchestra students on the school stage with him, his cup of coffee only a few feet away.

It was the first time Grams has conducted a clinic for high school orchestra students. He helped the students with pieces they are set to perform for an upcoming recital. Indeed, Grams changed up the pace for the two pieces. At one point, he asked the cellists to use more of their bows, to not limit themselves to only a fraction of it. "Give me your best Yo-Yo Ma impression," he joked, referring to the world-famous cellist. "You're a shrieking whale," he shouted at one point, eliciting some laughter. "I want them to go play, make sound, not worry if it's not perfect," Grams said.

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