Our PRIZM in the Schools faculty returned to Hickory Ridge Middle School to coach the school orchestra’s strings students. PITS faculty members – Daniel Gilbert (violin), Michelle Walker (viola), Aaron Tubergen (viola) and Joseph Miller (cello) – visited the school twice a week and taught two classes each day. PRIZM’s partnership with the middle school is an opportunity to give young musicians a deeper introduction and well-rounded experience in chamber music performance. They receive more hands-on training with their instruments and approach more diverse and challenging repertoire.
After six weeks of coaching and rehearsals, nearly 25 students performed in a showcase concert for their fellow classmates and family. The students collaborated in a mix of ensemble settings: in small chamber groups and alongside their PITS coaches. The four faculty members also played a few chamber works together during the program.
“There is an overwhelming amount of talent among these students at Hickory Ridge Middle School,” said Sabrina Hu, PRIZM director of operations and educational programming. “We’re grateful that Mr. Joyner and the school open their doors to us each year to give these students the opportunity to work closely with PRIZM teachers. We’ve seen many students from this program who keep up with their training throughout the years and continue to find success with music today.”
This is the eighth year PRIZM and Hickory Ridge Middle School partnered in the PITS program. The program also serves as an introduction to PRIZM’s annual summer Music Camp and International Chamber Music Festival. Each year, five students are awarded a full scholarship to attend the first week of the camp on full scholarship.