Eric Essary (father), Gilian Essary (student) and Tonya Essary (mother).
Susan Sielback (in apron, librarian and designer of violins), Sammie Sassi (younger sister), Lisa Idell-Sassi (mother) and Madelyne Sassi (student).
Kenndra Willard (student) and Susan Brouillette (mother) work on a paper violin.
Story last updated at 9/15/2010 - 1:20 pm
JUNEAU - Glacier Valley Elementary kicked off its new El Sistema inspired program - Juneau, Alaska Music Matters (JAMM) - with two evenings of community "paper violin" building last week. Kindergarten students and parents joined JAMM teachers to create cardboard replicas of violins, which students will then "play" and learn on for the first several weeks of this in-school orchestral program before graduating to their "real" violins.
The paper orchestra project comes directly from the Venezuelan free music education program, El Sistema, which has served over 1 million children. There, children and families hand craft paper string instruments so that young learners can develop respect, care and discipline for their instruments while also building basic musicianship skills, such as singing.
Glacier Valley Elementary music teacher, Lorrie Heagy, had the opportunity to experience the paper orchestra in Venezuela first hand this year as one of ten inaugural Abreu Fellows at the New England Conservatory of Music.