1. The process of giving or receiving systematic instruction

2. an enlightening experience

To pass on the arts to young people is a moral obligation for the 21st-century artist. We know, through study after study, that kids excel in math, reading, social surroundings, and in all aspects in life when they are exposed to the arts or are inspired to learn an instrument.  Today's demanding, test-centric, highly distracting world calls for the arts and culture to inspire youth now more than ever. 

The arts expand a student's understanding of what civilization can be. The need to stir the soul, at all ages, has never been more essential. For kids not to know classical music is to be cut off from one of the greatest sources of human expression ever created. Life can often be superficial. Digging deep into history, into culture, into the past are no longer exemplified as traits worth cultivating.  Love, tragedy, ecstasy, and the overall human condition are experienced through music in ways children can grasp and feel deep within their souls, even when they cannot effectively articulate these emotions. Sometimes music and art become the only means by which they can fully express themselves. This is why music education and outreach is not only a mission, but one of my greatest joys and rewards in life: To have the opportunity to give back what I not only cherish, but to also help shape a young person's future.

How can we Help?

When I was in the 6th grade - my first year playing the Tuba as a middle schooler - I had an enthusiastic young teacher who nurtured my early promise and joy I had for playing in band. Since I happened to be the only tuba player in school, she put me in the beginner band, as well as the senior band, the pep-bad, and the jazz band. I was in music several hours a day, everyday, and I could not have enjoyed it more!

One day, she brought me to see the famous Canadian Brass in concert, knowing full well it would fan the flame of my passion and love for music. After that concert, at the age of 12, my life was forever changed. I remember getting home and telling my mom that I was going to be a professional musician and she quickly took me to the music shop where I bought all the recordings of the Canadian Brass and Boston Pops we could find in stock. After that one experience, I knew without a doubt that I just had to live a life in music. The nurturing attention by a passionate and enthusiastic educator in Homestead was all I needed to kickstart a love that has grown everyday since.

Music is an art form handed down from generation to generation. Passing our knowledge, talent, and gifts down to young people is a civic duty. I have traveled around the world giving education and outreach concerts, and with both Nu Deco Ensemble's Imagine Series and Amarillo's Symphony Kids and Class Act, we have the opportunity, duty, and great joy to give back to others. 

To be of service to the future wellbeing of not only my home town of Homestead, Florida, but also the Texas Panhandle, is a privilege that I am proud to be a part of. We simply will never know what the seeds of our efforts can produce and how many generations of people we can affect with just one concert. If there is one child at every concert who discovers a passion for music, then our potential as artists is realized one person at a time. There is no greater reward for us as artists and this is what it means to make a difference.