Dorcas Preston


September 05, 2001

--Written by Young Chang; photo by [tk]

There's music, and then there's live music.

Dorcas Preston, a volunteer of four years for the Pacific Symphony

Orchestra, says the experience of hearing an orchestra live is what

motivates her to give time to the cause.

"It's beyond anything you can hear on a CD or radio or television,"

the Corona del Mar resident said. "And also the audience plays a role



Preston, 63, said she has been involved with music almost since the

day she was born. She sang her first solo -- "God Bless America" at a

national church convention -- when she was 3. She has since sung with the

Pacific Chorale and other leagues.

This explains her love of music in general, but watching orchestras

perform live gives her a different thrill.

"I feel, at times, there's an electricity that takes place between the

two," Preston said of orchestras and audiences. "They make the musicians

play better, maybe with more feeling. I've sung with the Pacific Chorale

for the last six years, and I know that we've experienced that."

She volunteers to help others know this firsthand too.

As a member of the Pacific Symphony Orchestra League board, Preston's

duties include heading up programs for various luncheons, helping to

raise funds at parties and serving as the historian for the orchestra's

Supper Club.

"We have dinners at lovely homes and have guest stars come in and play

for us too," said Preston, who is also the current Miss Senior Orange


As a historian, she takes photos and archives records of the event.

Fund-raiser luncheons are an important aspect of Preston's volunteer job


"I feel that without people helping to raise funds for the orchestra

that we wouldn't have an orchestra," she said. "Because it's something

that people love, but they just don't think about it unless you put it in

front of them."

Preston said her favorite perk in volunteering is the music she helps

to present and hear. Her second favorite?

"The social aspect," she admits.

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