IRVING, TEX. – When Josilene Ferrari left Brazil in 2004 and came to Irving, Tex., she brought a bachelor’s degree and certification in music. Her intention was to attend UT Arlington and earn a master’s degree in music, which she did, but God had grander plans for her.
The church that Ferrari joined, the Dallas Brazilian Seventh-day Adventist Church, featured a small band of young people each Sabbath who would play special music on violins, flutes, saxophones and trumpets, led by Leilane Seifert. When Seifert heard of Ferrari’s background in music, she invited her to help out.
Over the years, those few individuals have turned into a full orchestra that has witnessed through music not only in Irving, but throughout the United States.
Today, the orchestra includes those original instruments, as well as cellos, French horn, trombone, bassoon, acoustic guitar, electric and standup bass and percussion. Performers participate regardless of their musical experience, thanks to personalized arrangements by Ferrari. There is a broad mix of abilities, with some members having played in college, while others are still beginners. Last year’s orchestra featured 35 musicians.
Since 2004, the orchestra has performed in New York, Boston, Tennessee, Arkansas, Houston and Oklahoma.
In addition, Ferrari makes it a point to perform at community events in Irving. “Each Christmas, Irving holds an event where we perform, which gives us an opportunity to talk about our church to the community. Music opens doors.”
By Glen Robinson