NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – Some of New Rochelle’s youngest and most talented musicians are set to take on one of the country’s most prestigious stages when they showcase their talents at Carnegie Hall next month.
Hosted by the New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence, “On Stage at Carnegie Hall” will allow members of the high school orchestra, band and vocalists are set to take their talents to Seventh Avenue for a special show featuring alum Michael Kaiser, who will be the Master of Ceremonies.
According to Melissa Panszi-Riebe, who is one of the volunteers helping to put on the show, New Rochelle musicians take the trip to Manhattan once every four years, to ensure that every student to go through the school district has a chance to play in front of their friends and family at Carnegie hall.
“The idea is to make sure that at some point during their high school careers, they get the chance to play at Carnegie Hall or the Lincoln Center, some of New York’s finest,” she said. “Some very famous musicians have never been on Carnegie Hall; even if our students don’t pursue music going forward, they can always say they did that during their career.”
“Some students say they get nervous, but that’s just because of the name. These kids are so talented, that if you closed your eyes and sat in the audience, you couldn’t tell that you were listening to high school kids.”
With the concert less than a month away, volunteers with the New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence stand set to highlight some of the stories of students getting ready to perform at a venue as historic as Carnegie Hall. “We have just the gamut of stories in this group, from a girl whose grandmother sang on this same stage, to others that have used music to help cope with tragedy,” Panszi-Riebe added. “Music touches so many people in so many diverse and different ways. To come together and do this great group work is just a testament to who these kids are.”
In advance of the concert, the New Rochelle High School choir will play pop-up concert for commuters at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 19 at the train station. The concert will then be held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, June 3 at Carnegie Hall.
“This is truly a celebration of the best of New Rochelle, and the kids can feel that, there’s a certain pride to it. Cities often rallies around sports, but you don’t need a kid playing basketball to show support for the community, ” Panszi-Riebe concluded. “We’re expecting a packed house to see these supremely talented kids.”
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