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Sam Parry and the Gift of Music

                                        

Sam Parry founded the Western Australian Charity Orchestra (WACO) in 2008 to provide musicians with the opportunity to change lives through music. WACO changes the lives of its musicians by providing them with a venue to share and develop their talents. It changes the lives of its audiences by giving them beautiful live music, and it changes the lives of the beneficiaries of its charitable donations.

The orchestra has held eight concert seasons, showcasing the talents of over 1,000 Western Australian musicians, in the process raising funds for numerous charities. Recent recipients of WACO's fundraising include Guide Dogs WA, the Esther Foundation and beyondblue.

The Western Australia Charity Orchestra is just one of four ensembles in the WACO family, the others being the Western Australia Wind Symphony, the Nharmonic Chorale and the WACO Choir.

Sam is a woodwind specialist by profession and training and can play and teach flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and saxophone. Though he founded WACO in 2008 when he was just 18, Sam made a big decision in 2015 after the death of his son to put his heart into making WACO something bigger and greater than it had previously been. His work paid off, and in 2017 Sam was recognized with a Pride of Australia Medal.

Sam is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Mormon Newsroom met with Sam in Perth to discuss his gift of music to the community.

Sam's motto is “whatever we do should be done well”, and his dedication to music, his students, and the orchestra he founded clearly reflects that. Part of the secret to WACO's success is that auditions are “blind”, that is, played from behind a curtain. Musicians are thus selected solely on their ability to play.

In an era when most music is pre-recorded and played back, Sam understands the thrill and unique power of live performance.

His next project? “So many children and youth have raw musical talent and never get to touch a musical instrument. I want to change that”.  

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