Building a String Orchestra and Self-Esteem

Group photo

Boys & Girls Clubs of Delray Beach Members performed in a spring recital showcasing their musical prowess to friends, family and fellow Club members on Thursday, May 19th.  Two new groups of students performed a strings recital to mark the culmination of The Symphonia’s string program held inside the Club.  The Club members were taught with a hybrid method having only had two months of in-person lessons. The rest of their time was spent learning these challenging instruments via virtual instruction due to pandemic safeguards. For the past four years, professional musicians from The Symphonia have provided violin and cello lessons for six to fourteen-year-old members inside the Club. This year two ensembles dazzled the audience with over ten musical selections, including Southside Blues and Spanish Dancer.

“We are grateful to The Symphonia and their talented musicians who lovingly teach our Club members the joy of music,” said President & CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County Jaene Miranda. “The fact that this program continued to stay strong with virtual music lessons during the pandemic is a testament to The Symphonia’s and the Club members’ passion. We are thrilled that the music lessons are back in person at the Club and no longer held virtually and expect this program to keep growing.”

Music teach and 3 students

The Symphonia, performances and educational outreach programs feature nationally and internationally acclaimed conductors and soloists, enhancing the cultural lives of area residents, with special emphasis on its younger citizens. This program was launched in 2017 with seed money from the Children’s Services Council of Palm Beach County, followed by funding from Impact 100 Palm Beach County, and it has blossomed through the Virginia and Harvey Kimmel Family Foundation.

“It’s so rewarding to see what a difference learning to play a musical instrument has made for these children,” said Annabel Russell, Executive Director of The Symphonia.

“Our members accomplished more in the 8 weeks of in-person sessions than many kids accomplish in a year’s worth of violin and cello lessons.” said Cultural Arts Program Manager of Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County Casandra Tanenbaum. “Half of the participating students had never touched a violin or cello before in their lives. It’s a truly extraordinary accomplishment.”

This year’s recital gave students the chance to show off all their newly acquired skills and to feel the joy and pride of performing. The more advanced students played individual pieces, while the younger beginners perform side-by-side with the program facilitators.  Every single student performed solo or as part of an ensemble.

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