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On May 28, 1984 the wheels were set in motion for what would become the VYSO Endowment Fund. That evening, the Youth Orchestra was performing one of its periodic concerts with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra at the Orpheum Theatre when suddenly a transformer blew, plunging the theatre into darkness. For a heartbeat, the Youth Orchestra stopped playing and then went triumphantly on because the young musicians had rehearsed their music so well they knew it by heart.
The orchestra earned a gracious letter of commendation from then VSO Conductor Maestro Akiyama, and a short time later a surprising reward. In the audience that night was an elderly woman, Miss Edith Alma Dressel. She was so impressed with the Youth Orchestra's performance that she immediately changed her will to include the VYSO. A few days later she passed away, leaving $50,000 to the orchestra. The Board of Directors wisely decided to preserve this generous donation to make it work for the orchestra in perpetuity. And thus began the Vancouver Youth Symphony Society Endowment Fund.
Administered by Canada's largest community foundation, The Vancouver Foundation, the VYSO Endowment campaign seeks your support. Many generous and thoughtful supporters of youth and music in our community, VYSO alumni, family, friends and teachers as well as government entities, foundations, small businesses and corporations have already contributed.