Third Annual HYO Summer Camp

We are so excited to have finally begun HYO’s third annual summer camp! This year, we invite 4 professional musicians from the Denver area to lead over 125 Haitian students! About 95 come from HYO’s main orchestra in St. Pierre in Mirebalais, 25 from HYO’s newest location at St. Martin in Port-au-Prince, and 5 more from an affiliate orchestra in Cange. We are also lucky enough to have 6 wonderful teaching assistants helping us from the Saint Trinity Orchestra in Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s premier professional orchestra. So exciting! 

The kids will have a wonderful week full of orchestra rehearsals, private and small group lessons, observation recitals by our American professors, and clinics on music theory, tuning, instrument repair, and many more! It will be a blast! 

Stay tuned for more updates!

-Zach 

     
   

DYAO, Colorado Symphony, and El Sistema work with HYO

Things are moving fast for HYO students Peter, Fencia, and David! Since arriving in Colorado, they have gotten the opportunity to work with the Denver Young Artists Orchestra (DYAO), El Sistema at Bruce Randolph High School, and, of course, the Colorado Symphony. On their first night, the HYO students visited DYAO at Denver School of the Arts to rehearse side-by-side with students of similar age in DYAO’s conservatory orchestra. Peter remarked, “It was great to play with them! Thank you so much for the opportunity to play with them!” Many thanks to DYAO for allowing this to happen!

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HYO working with DYAO

Next, the students got a chance to work with El Sistema-Colorado, which was way cool to see. They spent hours working on some challenging pieces, along with some holiday songs! Very fun! Thank you to El Sistema for this incredible opportunity!

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HYO working with El Sistema

And of course, in between all of the fun activities, HYO spent the rest of their time at Boettcher Concert Hall at DCPA to work with the amazing Colorado Symphony! The students were able to sit in on rehearsals, and were amazed by what they heard from a professional orchestra. They also got the chance to have one-on-one lessons from Symphony members in their respective sections. We can’t wait to see how all the work pans out at the concert on Saturday, December 9! Hope to see you there!

Global Pedagogy Initiative-October 2017

Several months ago, Haiti Youth Orchestra announced an exciting partnership with Global Pedagogy Initiative, an American non-profit run by Meredith Blecha-Wells, and Kasia Bugaj that focuses on mentoring and training young musicians to become music teachers themselves. Kasia and Meredith just returned from an enormously successful maiden voyage to Mirebalais to work with Haiti Youth Orchestra! Guided by Road to Hope founder, Rich Harris, the two American musicians spent several days conducting the orchestra, and giving students tips and techniques that will hopefully enable them to teach the younger students in both orchestras. Very exciting! Many thanks for all your hard work, Meredith and Kasia!IMG_7566.JPGIMG_4879.JPGIMG_4878.JPG

Reflection

Nearly six years ago, I founded the Haiti Youth Orchestra from my first donation of 8 string instruments through Viva Suzuki. Since then, HYO has grown to a full orchestra, including more than 80 instruments, and more then 150 students in the music program. HYO now travels Haiti, playing at weddings, schools, funeral and church services and more. I have been blown away by the immense amount of support I’ve received at home, such as the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, as well as the undying passion for music that is in each and every aspiring musician in HYO. 

I started HYO because I saw a real need for music in a classical setting in Haitian culture. The amazing people are so musically gifted due to the deep appreciation of music in the culture, and yet, nearly none of them know what a ‘violin’, or a ‘symphony orchestra’ is. Because of this, I felt it was important to give them the recourses they needed to deepen their appreciation of music through orchestral music.

As the years pass, we hope to continue development of HYO’s second orchestra, St. Martin, and further our partnership with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra.  
So, I say thank you to all of our supporters like CSO, our donors, and most importantly, to all of the amazing kids of HYO!

 

Succesful HYO Music Camp!

Another incredibly successful trip with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra! Pictures below are from the grand concert, with the orchestra players preforming for the local community. The progress that the orchestra made just this week was incredible. We are also excited to welcome Peter, Lovelie, David, and Fencia to Colorado this next December to work with the CSO again! Thank you to Abby, Helen, and Paul from the CSO and Anna, our apprentice, for another great HYO music camp!

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