Walk down the halls at Laurel Elementary School in Fort Collins and music just oozes out of every corner. Fiddle music in the air locks, violins on all of the coat racks lining the walkways, the music teacher leading his next class into the music room while playing his guitar. Music is an integral part of every day life at Laurel Elementary School. PYCH is just the next step for many of the intermediate students already well-versed in music as part of their daily school life.
Every other week PYCH founder and Executive Director, Jephta Bernstein works with 15 of these budding musicians, ranging from kindergarten through fourth grade, in a private lesson one week, followed the next week with a group lesson of their chamber music ensemble. And to do this, they give up one recess, sometimes two (!) a week. Big sacrifice for a little kid.
This video (click here to view video) gives a glimpse of the day Vincent Burkhardt came to Laurel and brought PYCH’s Chamber Music Program to the outside world. By grabbing a small snippet of what goes on here three days a week, Vincent brings to life all the fun, enthusiasm and positive conviction of these young musicians. Most didn’t read music yet…..but it’s coning. They’re just starting to get the connection between dots on the staff, understanding the rhythmic values connected to different looking ink blotches on the page, and the crazy things they do with their fingers. It’s complicated! But they manage to do it through practice, practice, practice, determination and love for the violin instilled in them by Chad Fisher, The Violin Program at Laurel’s Coordinator.
They’re growing in leaps and bounds, mastering two pieces already in the short few months we’ve been working together and starting a third! I’m proud of each and every one of them. It’s so immensely fulfilling to see their progress and soak up their enthusiasm and joy for the violin. I can’t wait to see the paths they take and where they go!