For the past few months, I’ve contributed some PR/marketing work to Terra Sounds School of Arts and Music in Northbrook, Illinois. Below is my press release published by the Northbrook Patch about the Campanella Children’s Choir benefit concerts that took place in early June 2014, including the back story to this grand event. Check out the published article here or read on below:
Since 2000, the Campanella Children’s Choir of Northbrook, IL has been enriching children’s and family lives through musical performances, both on a local and national scale. Marianna Kosaya, founder and conductor of the choir, immigrated to Chicago in 1994 from Kiev, Ukraine and holds a Master’s Degree in Music Education and Choir Conducting from Kiev State Pedagogical University. and an immense passion for music.
Unfortunately, after Campanella’s grand performance at the March 2014 San Francisco Heritage Festival of Gold at the famous Davies Symphony Hall, one of the original members for the choir, Mary Melnikova, faced tragedy. Mary’s mother, Zhanna Melnikova, lost the battle to cancer. In this difficult time, Campanella has been behind Mary every step of the way.
“Mary was always a very musically-gifted child, and one of the best singers of our choir,” Kosaya noted, and Mary’s mother has been thoroughly involved with music within Campanella and especially within Mary’s life. As a trained vocalist, she had a deep understanding of musical education and children’s development through music. She encouraged the Campanella children’s interest in music and singing, dreaming that one day her daughter would pursue her love of music and continue her musical education.
“Last time I saw her was at our concert at the beginning of February,” Kosaya remembers fondly, “She came to our concert, despite the fact that she felt sick and weak. After the concert, she approached me and looked so happy. I remember she told me that she loved the concert so much that her soul was singing. She felt like she just witnessed a concert in a conservatory hall.”
Sadly, in March, Zhanna passed away. During her mother’s funeral, Mary promised that she would never stop studying music and would continue singing to honor her mother’s memory. To support Mary in her time of need, Campanella is hosting two benefit concerts in Mary’s mother’s memory. Along with the children’s choir, Campanella has invited Chicago-area groups and musicians to participate in the fundraising event.
What: Two Benefit Concerts by The Campanella Children’s Choir, The Chicago Trio, and Chicago musician Mihail Sychev
When: June 7; 5 PM and 7 PM
Where: St. Giles Church at 3025 Walters Ave, Northbrook, Illinois 60062
The first concert, taking place at 5pm, will begin with a performance of children’s songs, performed by the Beginners and Prelude choirs. Following their act, the Chicago Trio (Violinist Natalya Chernysh, cellist Irene Schweizer, and Pianist Diana Kofman) will perform several classical pieces from fairy tales from around the world, including works by Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Edvard Grieg, Modest Mussorgsky, Achille-Claude Debussy, and Anatoly Lyadov. Mihail Sychev will close the concert with a performance of his original pieces, “Baba Yaga,” “Sorceress,” and “The Dwarf.” Throughout the concert, a slide show of Campanella children’s artwork will be on display.
The 7 PM concert will feature Campanella’s Treble Choir and Concert Choir and the Chicago Trio at 7:00 PM. In addition, choir members and soloists will perform pieces by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, as well as folk songs and pieces by contemporary composers.
Donations of $10 and beyond are welcome and encouraged. All proceeds will go towards helping Mary and her family. Make a donation online at http://shar.es/SdEJ0
About Campanella Children’s Choir:
Campanella Children’s Choir was founded in 2000 and has evolved into a competitive ensemble that is the core of the entire Campanella Educational Center. The choir sings a diverse repertoire of music in multiple languages and performs in numerous community events throughout the year, including the Chicago Cultural Center, the Museum of Science and Industry, Northbrook Public Library, Wheeling Park District, Skokie Public Public Library, and has been recently featured in 98.7WFMT’s “Introduction” show, led by radio host, David Polk.
In 2014 and 2008, Campanella Children’s Choir participated in the Chicago Heritage Festival and received the Outstanding Choral Group award, as well as the Certificate of Excellence. The choir was invited to take part in the 2009 National Invitational Choral Festival (Festival of Gold), in which it was subsequently a gold medal recipient with selected Campanella choristers participating in the Festival’s final concert, held at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Hall.
A non-profit organization, Campanella is a place where children gather to express and share their talents, a place where through dynamic cooperation children develop their artistic skills and acquire knowledge in an array of disciplines. Although artistically inclined, Campanella also offers classes in subjects not related to art, such as Math and Russian Language. Campanella’s programs are designed for children ages 3-16.