Winsor Music has had a long-term relationship with Project STEP (String Training and Educational Program). The goal of Project STEP is to demonstrate to all aspiring young musicians that a career in classical music is open to any gifted, well-trained and disciplined performer regardless of racial or ethnic background. Like Project STEP, we recognize that certain minorities are underrepresented in classical music, so the Winsor Music Scholarship Fund was established to enable students from these communities, many of whom are also students enrolled in Project STEP, to attend summer music programs. We believe these to be a crucial part of a young musician’s development because they provide an opportunity for students to play chamber music in an intensive but fun environment. As a chamber music organization, we believe that the particular experience of playing in a chamber group is often the catalyst for a lifelong commitment to music; students learn to collaborate and interact with one another in movement towards a common goal, to use their talent both as a means of self-expression, and as a tool for communication and dialogue with their peers. They are taught to listen closely and respond thoughtfully, to think without speaking and to speak without words. Chamber ensemble playing is instructive, interactive, engaging, and just plain fun, and we want the opportunity to experience it to be available to all students. In 2012, Winsor Music designated $8,000 for eight students to attend summer music camps.
Isabel Espinosa*, Valandrhah Abraham*, Itsva Hernandez*, Joel Roches*
Njioma Grevious*, Nkosi Grevious, Alyssa Daly*, Tamara Cambronero*
We provide these students with more than funding. As scholarship recipients, we invite them to perform on outreach concerts as a means of giving back to their communities, and on children’s concerts where they may serve as role models and inspiration to younger children. Participating in these concerts with adult professional musicians also provides them with a unique opportunity to receive valuable support, advice, and encouragement. This mentoring, while highly individual, is conducted in the setting of the small chamber group, which provides the students with educational benefits of teamwork, communication, and collaboration.
* Indicates Project STEP student