String Orchestra – Developing Leaders for Ministry

Lewis Rosove’s first venture onto the conducting podium came as a bit of a surprise during his college days, but now he takes the podium regularly to direct the MBU Symphony Orchestra. During Rosove’s 22 years as assistant principal violist in the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Lord was preparing him for the position he holds now. He received multiple opportunities while in the MSO to work with high-school orchestras as a clinician or even conduct them in concert. When performance-related injuries sidelined Rosove from his orchestral career in 2008, the Lord used the extra time to allow him to reflect and to eventually lead him to Maranatha.

Through the Lord’s wisdom, Rosove’s decision came easily enough. “It’s not as though I was not involved in working with young musicians – quite the contrary,” says Rosove of his other responsibilities while still with the MSO. “I wore several hats: private music instructor, clinician, spokesperson/apologist for the arts, etc.” But each of these activities prepared him excellently for his role at Maranatha. Rosove arrived at MBU for his new position in January 2010, and began to phase into his present position as part-time associate professor.

Mr. Rosove’s current role at Maranatha involves directing the string orchestra, teaching String Repertoire, and teaching private violin and viola lessons as well as chamber groups. Rosove also occasionally leads the symphony orchestra for various concerts throughout the school year. He readily admits that his work at Maranatha has developed his conducting skills beyond where they were when he came. “I have a much better sense of physical balance and feel for the baton than when I first started,” he reminisces. “I remember all too well the javelin-style flips of the baton into the ensemble.”

The motto of MBU is “To the Praise of His Glory,” and everything done here is shaped to accomplish the goal of praising the Lord. Rosove believes that the purpose of orchestra accomplishes that goal, both through uniting the orchestra members toward the common goal of glorifying the Lord, and through teaching the orchestra members how to improve their own skills and work with other musicians to make the best possible music.

The string orchestra recently had the opportunity to showcase that purpose through their recent Sunday out, ministering through music at several area churches. Julia Bachorik, junior music major with concentrations in Piano Pedagogy and String Pedagogy, reflects, “The Sunday out was a great opportunity to connect with believers from different areas of the Midwest.”

First-year biology major Caeley Griffith agrees: “Through interacting with church members, I was reminded that the work we are doing isn’t for ourselves. It is to glorify God and minister to churches through music.”

Students often hold positions of leadership within the orchestra, including serving as section leaders, introducing songs during concerts, and planning travel logistics. Samantha Pfeiffer, senior Violin Performance and Pedagogy major, reflects, “Being involved in leadership really challenges each person to invest in the ministry of orchestra. Sometimes we can be too passive in our approach to ministry, but getting involved in leadership forces us to actively participate.”

Rosove believes that these ministry and leadership opportunities further the mission of Maranatha: “Orchestra is a group of individuals who have unique personalities, divergent opinions, and varied gifts, coming together to achieve what each one alone could not. That is the beauty that comes from the richness of a full body of strings united for a common purpose.”

Written by Makayla Stevenson

String Orchestra’s Recent MBU Chapel Performance