Happy Holidays, Friends!
Sometimes you’re really lucky, and you get the chance to know a child for years.
Lia’s curly hair was always in pigtails, and at four, when she danced with us in her Music for the Very Young class, her pigtails danced too. She usually started with a serious expression, but once Miss Joyce pulled out her guitar and led the singing, the laughter began.
In 2011, Lia wanted to play the violin. Her aunt heard from a neighbor that Trenton Community Music School was offering lessons, and one Saturday, she and her dad came in to sign up. It was marvelous! Of course she scratched away like any beginner, but with that same ravenous joy she’d shown at four.
When we started up the Trenton Music Makers Orchestra in 2015, guess who was first in line to join? Now Lia gets to stay after school three days every week and she receives her own violin for the year – and she is playing better, much better. Like kids in El-Sistema-inspired programs throughout the world, she has found that the orchestra is a safe place where everyone works hard, and where figuring out how to get along means that everyone does great work together.
Now Lia is a seventh grader. And she has Trenton Music Makers friends who are in high school, and dreaming of college. She notices that Zaire, our program intern, has already been accepted to five.
In our 20th Anniversary year, we have the joy of looking back over our years of preschool music and teacher training and the thousands of families who have taken part; remembering the private lessons we formerly gave in church classrooms; and now making music with over 100 young people in our orchestra. We’re also looking ahead to that time, coming soon, when some of our kids will return to work with us as college students and young professionals.
But it’s Lia, dancing in pre-K, playing her violin with beauty and determination, and now dreaming of college, that makes it a truly Happy Anniversary. Will you help her keep playing through high school, and support the hundreds of Trenton children whose lives are full of music and purpose, with a gift this year?
With our gratitude –
Trenton Music Makers