Bringing the Music to Emily

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One of our missions is to assist in the music education of young people.  We do this through the presentation of concerts, clinics and festivals.  We are frequently invited to perform educational outreach concerts throughout the Chicagoland area.

On February 18th of this year, we performed with the Northbrook Junior High (NBJH) Wind and Percussion Ensembles. This special evening started with an open clinic by Dr. Mallory Thompson with the NBJH Wind Ensemble, followed by joint performances with NBJH Percussion Ensemble & Wind Ensemble, and concluded with a Northshore Concert Band performance for all to enjoy. NBJH Band director Greg Scapillato helped to make this event possible.  He also organized yesterday’s pop-up concert on the front lawn of a recuperating student musician.

Emily Erickson is an 8th grade student at Northbrook Junior High in Northbrook, Illinois.  A member of the band, she has played flute for five years.  The final band concert of the year was on May 12th.  Unfortunately Emily was unable to attend due to an extended hospital stay where she was recovering from a kidney transplant. But thanks to band director Greg Scapillato and the members of the NBJH band, the music was brought to Emily.

Yesterday, approximately 40 members of the Northbrook Junior High Wind Ensemble assembled on the flute player’s lawn and invited her to play with them in an impromptu pop-up concert.  When asked how it felt to play her instrument for the first time since her surgery, Emily said, “It went way better than I thought. I was afraid it might hurt to hold my breath, but it didn’t.”

“I don’t know if we can replace (the spring concert) but we can put something in its place and give her a special memory that she can carry with her as she goes on to high school,” Mr. Scapillato said. “We wanted to bring her back into the fold. There are no benchwarmers in this group. We’re all together, that’s how the music comes alive. I’m glad it all worked out.”

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This special act of kindness demonstrates the compassion and love that can be brought out through the power of music!

Follow this link to view the touching images of this special tribute included in the Northbrook School District 28 District Spotlight.

All of us in the Northshore Concert Band want to wish flutist Emily Erickson a safe and speedy recovery.

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Please call 877-432-2263 or email info@northshoreband.org to learn more about our educational outreach initiatives.