High School Musicians Heal With Harmonies

Students from several campuses team up to tour senior-living communities

On the first Sunday of August, mellifluous notes from stringed instruments drifted delicately through the hallways of The Juliette Fowler Communities.

The source? Quartets of students from Highland Park High School, Greenhill School, Ursuline Academy, and other North Texas schools.

The instrumentalists joined forces earlier this summer and dubbed themselves Musical Melodies. With enough members for two string quartets, they seek to bring joy and comfort to residents of nursing homes and retirement communities, a demographic that may have felt forgotten and isolated last year with the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We love chamber music, and we wanted to find a way to perform for these people,” said violinist Justine Choi, a junior at Highland Park High School. 

All members are from high school orchestras or the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra. “We decided to combine and wanted to use this to spread chamber music in the community,” Choi said.

Their performances have been well-received so far. They visited The Memory Care in late July and intend to share their love of music with more senior living communities soon.

“I think people enjoy it,” said Christopher Dycus, cellist and senior at Greenhill. “A lot of them always come up afterward to us and say thank you and that they loved it. I’ve played for seniors before, and they always like when kids come visit and are very appreciative of the music.”

The quartets play a mixture of songs by different artists to appeal to a variety of tastes. Some pieces they perform include “Time” by Hans Zimmer and “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” by Mozart. 

“I really love coming and sharing music with people who may have been cast aside by society or a little bit isolated,” Choi said. “It’s nice to come and remind them that they’re not forgotten, and people still care.”

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