Mosaic Steel Orchestra Stage Side is based in Norfolk, VA. This regional group involves students from the cities of Chesapeake, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Virginia Beach. By engaging youth and young adults in Caribbean steelpan ensembles we provide cultural arts studies and develop professional performance etiquette. Mosaic Steel Orchestra’s assorted membership, demanding performance season, and free public performances demonstrate and instill the importance of diversity while developing professional work skills and cultivating community responsibility.
Since 2007, we have led the effort to provide high-quality arts exposure to underserved populations in Hampton Roads Virginia. Throughout the 7-Cities we have actively engaged youths and adults through community programs, summer camps, workshops and performances. Our program benefits are shown in an external assessment conducted by Old Dominion University graduate student, Jennifer Lynch. Ms. Lynch's report can be read by clicking here.
Our Vision is grounded in hope that our long term benefits to the community foster a greater respect and appreciation for the arts in communities where the humanities have been abandoned.
Mosaic is not just a name; however, it is the underlying concept of the ensemble as its membership's demographics are representative of a variety of ages, races, socio-economic backgrounds and cities of residence. The ensemble's repertoire is a mosaic, which demonstrates the versatility of the steelpan art form. The orchestra’s set list includes the Soca and Calypso styles generally associated with the instrument, but also consist of works from the genres of Classical, Jazz, Afro-Cuban, and American popular music; giving Mosaic Steel Orchestra a broad appeal.
Immediately following their debut performance in July 2007, Mosaic Steel Orchestra’s first summer season was completely booked with engagements throughout the region. Since its establishment, the group has performed at various events on the campuses of Hampton University, Norfolk State University, James Madison University, Old Dominion University, The College of William & Mary and Elizabeth City State University exposing members to various college-life settings. On the national scene members of Mosaic Steel Orchestra performed in the New York Steelband Panorama with Sesame Flyers Intl’ Steel Orchestra, which provided members with invaluable experience in an authentic large band Trini-Style performance. The orchestra has also presented out-of-region on the campuses of Miami University of Ohio, University of Delaware and at the Pan Masters Steel Band Jamboree in Brentwood, MD.
In August of 2015, Mosaic Steel Orchestra was invited to compete at the inaugural International Panorama held in Trinidad and Tobago. The honor of being invited to participate in this event was extended to only 3 bands from the United States. Joining with members of the Cordettes Steel Orchestra from Sangre Grande, Trinidad, and the Rising Stars Steel Orchestra from the U.S. Virgin Islands, Mosaic Steel Orchestra went on to be named one of the top 20 steel bands in the world. As the word continues to spread about this captivating ensemble you can expect many more local, regional, national, and international performances.
Join as a Musician
Mosaic Steel Orchestra Stage Side members are chosen through an application/audition process that involves the program director, prospective member and their parent or guardian. Individuals that qualify must be a resident of a Hampton Roads, VA community. The majority of orchestra members rise through the ranks from a Mosaic Steel Orchestra Junior Ensemble into Mosaic Steel Orchestra.
There are open tryouts. Auditions are held at various times of the year as determined by program capacity. Application/Auditions may be scheduled by contacting the program director. Regardless of age new members will be recommended for appropriate Mosaic Steel Orchestra ensemble based on individual skill level.