About the Oneota Valley Community Orchestra


Founded in August of 2014, the Oneota Valley Community Orchestra is a volunteer ensemble open to all area (and non-area) residents who wish to perform great music in an orchestral setting. From symphonies to opera, the OVCO will present orchestral music from a variety of different styles and time periods ranging from the baroque era through newly commissioned works. A typical season consists of three to four "Masterworks" concerts, which include the full orchestra, and a few small venue concerts for our chamber music series.

Through the programming of high quality literature from the symphonic repertoire and our commitment to playing at a high artistic level, the OVCO has been able to attract professional and semi-professional musicians to sit in a number of our sections. However, the core of the orchestra is made up of professionals from other fields who want to continue the study of classical music and present free performances to the area.

During our regular September-April season, the OVCO rehearses and performs in the Decorah High School Auditorium on Sunday afternoons. Typically, each concert series consists of 6-8 two-hour rehearsals. Though all of our members graciously volunteer their time, the OVCO does provide mileage reimbursement to help musicians who travel over 20 miles attend rehearsals and performances. Musicians of the OVCO do not pay membership dues. If you are interested in playing or have questions, please feel free to Contact us or click here to fill out a few questions on our musician interest form. The OVCO does not require its musicians to audition, however it is expected that you would be able to perform your part at a high level with only 6-8 rehearsals.

The OVCO is directed by award-winning conductor Matthew Cody. A 2014 graduate of Colorado State University with a master’s of music in conducting and music education, Matthew has conducted Appalachian Spring, Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, Adagio for Strings, Tchaikovsky Serenade for Strings, Bloch Concerto Grosso, selections from Magic Flute, and Shostakovich Symphony 9 with professional orchestras. While finishing his coursework at CSU, he also conducted members of Opera Fort Collins and Fort Collins Symphony in a concert production of The Secret Garden.

Matthew has studied with Wes Kenney-music director of Fort Collins Symphony, Opera Fort Collins, and Denver Youth Symphony; Jason Weinberger, music director of Waterloo Cedar Falls Symphony; and Dr. Robert L. Larsen, founder and music director of Des Moines Metro Opera and professor emeritus of Simpson College.

In 2016 Matthew received the American Prize in Conducting Award, Community Orchestra Division.