Rosedale Musicians Perform at Honors Recital

On Sunday, February 10, in the wake of the winter storm Nemo, five girls from Rosedale traveled to Concordia Conservatory in Bronxville, NY. The Rosedale musicians joined ten other music students for the annual honors recital, described on the school’s website as open only to students “who have demonstrated outstanding commitment and progress during the school year based on a teacher’s recommendation.”

The Concordia Conservatory of Music and Art has had a partnership with the Rosedale Center for over ten years. Currently funded through a generous grant from the Countess Moira Foundation, the program provides 28 Rosedale students with individual lessons in voice, violin, and guitar. Five Concordia faculty members come to Rosedale each Friday afternoon to teach the girls.

Singers Deidre Skerritt, Amberstorm Hopwood, and Stefrances Martin and violinists Genesis Abreu and Escalin Lopez represented Rosedale at the honors recital. Genesis, who started violin lessons only last year, surprised her teacher after Hurricane Sandy by showing up with an entire piece memorized. The honors recital was her first public performance,but she professed that she was more excited than nervous. At the other end of the spectrum, Stefrances has been in the Rosedale music program since sixth grade and now attends the Celia Cruz Bronx High School of Music.

The girls’ progress may be attributed to their pledge at registration to practice at least five times per week, for a minimum of 100 minutes. Rosedale Program Director Mary St. Thomas commented, “It’s amazing to see how the girls will be struggling with something and then the next week they have a whole piece memorized. You can see the effort they put in at home. The music program shows the girls the value of practice and perseverance, especially when something is really challenging.”

Thanks to the music program, the Rosedale students are developing not only musical knowledge and skills, but also discipline and confidence which they can apply to other aspects of their life.

This spring all 28 Rosedale music students will perform in two end-of-year recitals at Concordia College’s Sommer Center. A great night is anticipated for students, friends, and families.