The Dallas String Ensemble consists of approximately 50 string players (violin, viola, cello and bass), all ninth graders or younger. DSE musicians encounter complex rhythms and begin to explore the interaction between various harmonies and melodies, while performing beautiful music.
Under direction of Susan Younghans, the DSE performs three concerts annually. The final concert in May takes place at the Meyerson Symphony Center.
Rehearsals and Requirements
DSE rehearsals take place on Sunday afternoons, from 3:30 to 5:30 pm, at the Sammons Center for the Arts.
DSE members must demonstrate early-advanced bowing techniques, reading music, shifting proficiency and should be comfortable using vibrato. All GDYO musicians are expected to participate in their school music programs.
Dallas String Ensemble Conductor
Susan Younghans is currently in her eighth season conducting the YPO and DSE. Originally from Buffalo, NY, Susan Younghans came to Texas in 1984 and is recognized as an accomplished teacher, conductor and performer in the Dallas area. Susan received her Bachelor of Music Performance Degree from the State University of New York at Fredonia where she studied with Charles Joseph and a Master of Music Education Degree from the University of North Texas where she furthered her violin studies with Philip Lewis and James Lerch. Susan continued to pursue her PhD while directing middle and high school strings in Lewisville ISD for seven years where her focus was program building. She currently teaches general music at A Child's Garden Montessori School and teaches private violin at Faith Christian School. She also maintains a private teaching studio where her students have won numerous contests at the local and state level. Susan is in demand as an adjudicator and clinician and has guided many students to careers in music performance and education. She performs regularly with the Wichita Falls Symphony and freelances locally with her string quartet and other regional orchestras.
Violin: Sondra Brudnak, Kathy Johnson and Christine Rewolinski
Viola: Sonja Ryberg and Peggy Tucker
Cello: Gretchen Nichols and Deb Perkins
Bass: Ted Grille and David Odegaard