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Kansas Wesleyan University

The Salina Symphony has chosen Dr. Leonardo Rosario as conductor of its Youth Strings Ensemble.

Rosario, assistant professor of Music at Kansas Wesleyan University, directs the strings program and conducts the KWU Strings Orchestra and the Student Honors String Quartet at KWU.

He was offered the position with the symphony because of his experience and desire to share knowledge with students, both teaching and playing, said Adrienne Allen, executive director of the symphony. He worked with the full youth symphony last year, Allen said, and the students enjoyed that.

Rosario also plays first violin in the Salina Symphony and with Smoky Valley Chamber Orchestra.

As a conductor, he enjoys introducing musicians and audiences to different or neglected chamber music. His academic research centers on Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, an African-English composer form the early 20th century.

Previously, Rosario served for three years as assistant concertmaster of the Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra. He was the 2008 second-prize winner of the International Chamber Music Competition of Chamber Music Foundation of New England.

Members of the intermediate-level string ensemble rehearse weekly in Sams Chapel on the KWU campus. The two formal concerts, Nov. 13 and April 16 this year, will be performed at Stiefel Theatre.

Auditions for the youth symphony and ensembles for string, brass and wind instruments are scheduled for Aug. 28. Go to for more information.

Story by Jean Kozubowski