String Students Perform at Local Film Festival

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The Elwood-John H. Glenn High School Chamber Strings recently participated in a special “Music of Hope” concert in conjunction with the Gold Coast International Film Festival. The festival was held at the Post Campus at Long Island University (LIU).

In preparation for the event, the Chamber Strings, under the direction of music teacher Karen Gellert, performed for the string faculty from LIU Post. The faculty provided feedback and ideas to augment the group’s performance. The students then joined the LIU Post String Ensemble, Paul D. Schreiber Chamber Orchestra and musicians from the Long Island High School for the Arts to rehearse three pieces to be performed at the film festival.

During the event, the film “Joe’s Violin,” was presented by Gold Coast Films. The story focused on a Holocaust survivor who found a violin at a displacement camp after the war. He treasured it because it brought him back to his life before the war, where he played music as a child with his family. When he came to New York, he donated the violin to the New York City Public Schools, where a girl named Brianna Perez received it. Brianna and her orchestra teacher attended the special event and the Elwood students had the unique opportunity to perform with her.

“This was a very special occasion for our students as they not only saw her on film, but played along with her,” said Mrs. Gellert. “They participated in an event that really demonstrated the power of music and how it can heal as well as motivate."