The Gift of Music: Rolf Reininghaus

Rolf Reininghaus has given the Sneak Peek Orchestra a lot of things to be excited about. A family friend of Kevin Lau, co-founder and artistic director, Reininghaus has been supportive of every SPO concert since they started out in 2007. In our recent “Dreams of Flying” concert, we were thrilled to announce Rolk Reininghaus, who has pledged financial support for future SPO concerts and initiatives, as our Orchestra sponsor.

This is an incredible boost to the group, as producing orchestral concerts involves expenses that range from preparing over fifty honorariums for the musicians, renting percussion instruments and a hall large enough to house the ensemble, to standard marketing expenses such as printing posters and programmes. According to Kevin:

“He really has been an ideal patron from the beginning. He comes to a lot of my own concerts, and he seemed like the logical choice to approach when we first founded the orchestra and had no other major sponsors. He was one of our most generous contributors on our first concert in 2007, and since then has regularly attended and supported all of our concerts.”

Over Christmas, Kevin Lau and Victor Cheng met with Reininghaus to talk about the future of the orchestra, and to find out whether he was interested in becoming an official sponsor of the orchestra. And thus, an orchestra sponsor for all up-coming SPO initiatives was born.

“We asked him what his vision for SPO was, and he simply said, ‘I want to see you guys do what you want to do and make the best of it. This is what I can do to help you out.’ He understands what an art organization is, and he is not trying to impose upon it, he just wants to help us get our dream off the ground.”

The Sneak Peek Orchestra has operated on a tight budget from the beginning, and they have managed to persist through a combination of thrifty spending and smart venue choices. Victor served as a fill-in organist for their recent venue, St. Gabriel’s Passionist Parish, which has in turn allowed the orchestra to rehearse and perform in its space for a very modest fee.

Victor expresses his relief and gratitude at these recent developments for the orchestra.

“It was a huge weight off our minds, not having to worry as much about our finances. We were extremely excited about this concert in a large part because our venue and orchestra sponsors allowed us to focus on what the orchestra set out to do in the first place. We are very thankful for their generous support. We hope to strengthen our relationship with St. Gabriel, and make the most of Rolf’s belief in our work.”

Lau echoes Cheng’s enthusiasm, not only on behalf of their own vision for SPO, but for all the musicians that have participated in and raised the bar of the orchestra over the years:

“The biggest thing we want to do is give back to the musicians, who form the backbone of our concerts. They are putting in a lot of work, and traditionally they have essentially played for free. The fee we offer them is really a monetary ‘thank you’. We wanted to raise that fee to a level that could be considered a reasonable fee in the professional world, which would in turn raise the professional level of the ensemble. That is first and foremost the goal Victor and I had in mind.”

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