Monday, October 19, 2015

Helping young musicians in Costa Rica!

Unlike some of you, I don't really have one of those large, very close families. I really wish I did, but you can't control what family you are born into, obviously. It's not really that my family lacks in size, there are enough people...but everyone is either geographically spread out, not interested in staying in touch, or have troubled lives so that we aren't really traveling on the same path, if you know what I mean. But I do have a sister, whom I adore. The only problem there is, she and her family, live about 700 miles away from me. We make an annual trip down to Tennessee to visit, and oh how I love those trips! However, I still miss them the other 95% of the year lol.

with my family in Tennessee, minus my nephew Collin (he wasn't with us)
My sister, her husband and their two children moved down there many years ago for better opportunities and better weather. Which if I could I would do the same, so I don't blame them at all! Her 2 kids have now grown up into young adults and I am so proud of them both! But, this blog post is going to focus on my niece, Nayana. She is actually my reason for telling y'all this background information on my family...yes, I have a point to all this, I'll get to it now lol.

Nayana has been playing clarinet for the last 8 years, starting in middle school. She has been hugely successful in her music career! In the past she had been accepted into the Murfreesboro Youth Orchestra, performing various concerts with that group of talented youngsters! Last year, she received the John Philip Sousa Award for her musical excellence! This is awarded to only one high school student per school, per year. It recognizes superior musical talent, loyalty, dependability, effort, and cooperation. You can imagine how proud of her we were for her achievement!
Nayana with her John Philip Sousa Award, 2014
TMEA State Concert Festival
Nayana; second one from left.
Nayana, on the right.
This year, as a college freshman at Middle Tennessee State University, she is continuing to excel in her musical endeavors! She is a music major, no surprise there! She is also minoring is Spanish and Recording Industry, which of course corresponds with her future musical career. She is in MTSU's Symphonic Band, 2nd chair and chamber winds. She recently came to me with some news of an exciting opportunity. She was asked to partake in a trip, along with other music students, to spend 2 weeks in Costa Rica in May 2016. Is this just a vacation to soak up some sun and do site-seeing? Oh no, they plan to do some important work there! The area they plan to visit is very poor. They have some eager to learn students, but without all the proper funds needed to have all the instruments and teachers to help them learn, their music education has been neglected. This is where the selected  MTSU music majors come in! Their wish is to go to this under privileged area, perform for and teach the students there! Nayana explained to me, "I hope the music I play for them will change their lives and give them inspiration to keep growing as a musician, even though they don't have much." I admire her passion to want to help those less fortunate and she told me what an amazing opportunity this is and she was delighted to even be asked to participate! The students they wish to help teach are from elementary through high school age kids. I can imagine these kids will be very thrilled with having some attention and education for their musical needs!
 
 

Nayana has worked a part time job since the day (literally) she turned 16. She is such a hard worker and despite her busy schedule with school, maintaining excellent grades, her band/orchestra practices and performances, she is still working while attending college too! But as most of us know all too well, college is expensive and she bought a car for her daily commute. This trip is in no way paid for through the college, so if the students want to go, they must pay their own way, an estimated $2,500. So, Nayana has set up a GoFundMe account in hopes that she can get some financial support for her trip to Costa Rica! I told her I would be more than happy to share her story, her goals and ambitions, and spread the word about her desire to go help those less fortunate with the art of music! Please feel free to click on the GoFundMe link and if you desire to donate, please do! Any help is appreciated!

GoFundMe Link; https://www.gofundme.com/z54ev53g

Nayana with Dr. Reed Thomas, Director of Band at MTSU; and organizer of this Costa Rica Project.

 
 
 
 
 
 
lots of practice and dedication!


Nayana, second in from the right. MTSU Marching Band members.
 


























 

45 comments:

  1. Good Luck to this talented young lady and her music career!!

    Ursula

    www.blueridgebeautyblogger.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. You're a good Auntie! Sounds like she's a very talented musician. May this opportunity and many future ones come her way!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. aww, thank you! I try, lol...she is talented, and has a heart of gold!

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. yes, sure is...scares me a little, but she is a big girl, so I know she'll be ok :)

      Delete
  4. Everyone deserves and Auntie like you! What a wonderful experience this will be. Best of luck to her.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Mary! Much appreciated and thanks for taking the time to read :)

      Delete
  5. What a great opportunity!! Sounds like she is good at what she does - hope she makes it!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. How exciting, good luck to her! What a great thing and good auntie!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I will share your article in my old marching band alumni page maybe it will get some funders!
    I admire your niece for the hard work. Being a musician is not something to take lightly, its truly a gift. I know because I tried and its just something thats in you or its not. Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That would be totally awesome, Orana...thank you!!!

      Delete
  8. Omg what an exciting opportunity!!! Wishing your cousin the best!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ...my niece, haha but yeah! You were in band for years too, weren't you? What did you play again?

      Delete
  9. What a wonderful opportunity! We should always encourage the pursuit of music!

    ReplyDelete
  10. She sounds like a very impressive young lady and she is lucky to have such a proud and supportive aunt!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She sure is, and thank you! She's beautiful inside and out and I'm very proud of her!

      Delete
  11. Oh that's exciting! I really hope they get to go. What a wonderful opportunity. She sounds like a very talented and impressive young lady.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Tricia, I think she is but I may be slightly biased lol

      Delete
  12. That's exciting. Good luck to her!

    ReplyDelete
  13. She seems like a great young women! Good luck to her!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Congrats! What a great opportunity for her!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great post! You have an amazing blog:)
    What about following each other on Instagram, Twitter and Bloglovin? Let me know:)

    irenethayer.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Irene! Yes, I'd def like to follow each other on social media platforms!
      www.instagram.com/HometownQueenBee
      www.Twitter.com/QueenBeeBlogger
      and there is a Bloglovin' button on my blog page, can't recall my link for it off the top of my head lol

      Delete
  16. That is awesome! You're such a supportive Aunt. I wish her all the best, and I hope she raises enough money to go. Sounds like a very determined and talented young woman.

    ReplyDelete
  17. This is great! Congratulations on the award, and best of luck with her newest venture.

    ReplyDelete
  18. What an awesome project. I wish her the best of luck in her travels and musical career. Music is a huge part of our lives too. My husband has a performance degree on tuba. Both our girls play trumpet. We love taking our grandson and great-nephew to concerts. At 3 years old our great-nephew loved looking through cards of musical instruments and naming them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is awesome! My son is very musical too (he is 6) but somehow I missed the musical talent gene :(

      Delete
  19. She sounds amazingly talented! Good luck to her and hope she gets to go... it would be such a wonderful opportunity!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Meredith! and thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  20. Such an amazing opportunity. Your niece is an incredible young lady :) Good Luck, I'll share this as well to help get her story out there <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Kimberly! That would be awesome if you could share this :) We'd appreciate it!!

      Delete
  21. Your niece is amazing!!! She sounds so focused and talented! No wonder you're so proud! Best of luck fundraising. She definitely deserves it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you very much! Nayana is going to be so touched by all of these wonderful comments and encouragement!

      Delete

Where has the Hometown Queen Bee been???

I can't believe it has been nearly a year since I sat in front of this screen as the "Hometown Queen Bee" and wrote a blog po...