CEDAR CITY — The Orchestra of Southern Utah has many talented, passionate musicians from 16-97 years old. Among them is the Orchestra’s assistant conductor Carylee Zwang, a left-handed drummer.
Zwang has performed with the Orchestra of Southern Utah since 2003 and served as the percussion section leader. She has played both live and recorded percussion with numerous groups including the Utah Shakespeare Festival, Tuacahn Center for the Arts, Parowan Community Theater, Cedar Valley Community Theater and Playmakers.
Zwang earned a Bachelor of Science in music education from Southern Utah University. She was awarded Teacher of the Year at Parowan High School and has received accolades for her dedicated community involvement while conducting and performing.
Though the Orchestra of Southern Utah is in between seasons, Zwang has stayed busy over the summer. She conducted the pit orchestra for “Once Upon a Mattress,” a humorous retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale, “The Princess and the Pea.”
In June, Zwang performed at the Frontier Folk Festival with the Hen Hao Fiddlers, a group of Orchestra of Southern Utah musicians who have traveled as far as China to perform. She has also been playing with her band, Take the Z Train, and spending time with her husband and 1-year-old daughter.
One of the major challenges in developing a semiprofessional orchestra for Cedar City was obtaining high quality percussion instruments. Zwang has been resolute in adding essential percussion over the past 12 years and arranged for a beautiful custom marimba to be built for the orchestra. It now has professional timpani, numerous drums, glockenspiel, chimes, marimba and much more, making it possible to perform music by any composer in style.
Zwang will be performing this summer at the Cornfest, the Iron County Fair and Orchestra of Southern Utah’s Fall Recital Series.