LMC Mentors Meet Their Young Musicians!
On Saturday, May 2, 2015, members of the Local Music Collective took the next big step in fulfilling the mission of our (very first!) grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. Volunteers from the Local Music Collective membership set up shop in The Donald L. Heiter Community Center in Lewisburg to show prospective young musicians a thing or two about the instruments that they love to play. (Rob Ensinger and his crew from Robert M. Sides Music also brought a wide variety of wind instruments for kids to try.)
Our sixteen volunteer Local Music Collective musicians brought their instruments and their unbounded enthusiasm to an afternoon during which young wannabe musicians from the area had the opportunity to discover and explore the musical sounds that most intrigued them. The goal was for these budding musicians to find the mentor and the instrument that felt like the best personal match, and our LMC volunteers definitely succeeded in connecting with some very happy future players and listeners.
So here’s a high volume shout-out to all of our volunteer mentors: Ferdie Alama, guitar; Bruce Barr, guitar; Annie Clark, stage presence and electric bass; Joe DeCristopher, guitar; Audra DePrisco, ukulele; Jeremy DePrisco, guitar and electronic music; Flora Eyster, flute; Rich Grace, banjo; Bob Gutheinz, hammer dulcimer; Carl Kirby, mandolin; Urie Kline, Taiko drumming; Hope Kopf, African drumming; Larry Mitchell, piano; Jack Pyers, bass and recording preparation; Stu Shrawder, drums; Stan Sloditskie, accordion; and Fred Strickland, electric bass.
In addition, other LMC members provided essential support throughout the day, greeting families as they arrived, explaining the event, and helping interested kids sign up for the summer lesson series. These members included John Sweeney, Cindy Cali and Loren Rhoades and Taylor Fleming. Bravo, everyone for your contributions to the long-term health of local music!
The afternoon concluded with a concert featuring all of the volunteer mentors. Each musician contributed a favorite song and, in fine LMC jam tradition, enlisted a number of fellow mentors for their musical assistance.
At the end of the day, eleven young people had found the mentors and instruments of their choice and then signed up for a series of three introductory lessons to be given at The Heiter Center over the summer. As of this writing, those lessons have begun, and one of our mentors, Flora Eyster, reports that her flute student was literally jumping for joy at her first lesson.
Finally, a tremendous amount of planning went into the development of the Mentors for Young Musicians program. We would be remiss not to thank the folks who did so much to make this event happen: Annie Clark, Flora Eyster, Fred Strickland, John Sweeney, and Larry Lawson. And, we are grateful to member Scott Canouse who spent the entire day taking a beautiful series of photos that documented this wonderful event. And Keith Hummel for extraordinary sound. Thank you all!!