The Hermit Club Orchestra --- A Hermit No More

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The Hermit Club was founded over a century ago downtown as an outlet for actors, singers and musicians looking for a place to exercise their chops. The club put on plays, sponsored dance events and started an orchestra.

The Hermit Club Orchestra is one of the organization's oldest traditions. Director Steve Eva says any member could join.

STEVE EVA: It was for amateur people who just wanted a venue to play. They weren't pros.

For it's entire 110-year-existence, the Hermit Club Orchestra has been a strictly private performance ensemble, until now. Last year, the Hermit Club merged with the the new Hofbrau Haus restaurant in Playhouse Square, giving the club more visibility, and prompting the Orchestra to perform its annual Christmas concert for the lunch crowd.

STEVE EVA: This is the very first time this orchestra has ever played in public. This is a huge change, but I think it's a good one

Steve Eva hopes this move to public performance will attract new members. At the very least, the music spread a little holiday cheer with the whole dining hall swaying along.

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