Feeling Good About Doing Good
Two Favorite American Pastimes: Baseball and Singing
Feeling Good About Doing Good
The South Boston Music Clubhouse paid it forward this summer with their “Feel Good Mixtape.” The youth and the staff chose and recorded songs that “were empowering to our members and the surrounding community.”
Through events at the Clubhouse, the participants raised $1,100 to donate to the Music Therapy Department of Boston Children’s Hospital and left a copy of the “Feel Good Mixtape” in each playroom in the hospital for patients and families to enjoy!
Two Favorite American Pastimes: Baseball and Singing!
Musicians from the Lowell Music Clubhouse were guests of honor at a Lowell Spinners minor league baseball team game this summer. Two of the Clubhouse’s vocal groups had the opportunity to perform on the promenade outside the game as the crowd of spectators arrived at the game.
This exciting performance gave both bands, “Take Five” and “The Pink Diamondz,” the opportunity to show off all their hard work from the summer session. Additionally, the Youth Leader was able put his professional skills to good use by managing set-up of the sound system.
According to Music Clubhouse Director, Seth Bailin, “Parents of the performers were thrilled to see and hear their children performing with confidence and musicality in a high-profile public event like this. Spinners fans told us they were impressed with the great work we’re doing. But the highlight was seeing the young performers beaming with pride and excitement after the show.”
The youth from Lynn Music Clubhouse has produced a complete, original soundtrack called Thumbelina: The Hip Hopera. The Clubhouse members played every type of role in this process, from writing to performing to producing and engineering.
Inspired by the hit Broadway musical, “Hamilton,” the Music Clubhouse Director and the Clubhouse’s Youth Leader looked for a story to get a “modern-day retelling.” They chose Thumbelina, because they were touched by the tale of a lost fairy-to-be overcoming endless odds and cruelty.
The process of creating the original soundtrack was complex and thorough, and involved a huge team of 30 youth. They wrote out all of the characters and their descriptions and created a list of popular artists that would inspire each character’s song. After casting the roles, the actors were responsible for helping to create lyrics as they worked with the production team. Melodies and rhythms were improvised in the recording booth first, then lyrics were added meticulously based on syllables. In production, the youth picked tracks that inspired them and started with the chords or drums, then created freely around those basic structures.
The lengthy process was worth it, as the staff and Clubhouse members all got tremendous pride from their completed masterpiece!
Music Director, Chantha Luk, says of the experience, “In addition to just putting out something fun and something we could enjoy for years to come, this Thumbelina Musical was meant to immerse the youth in music creation. I watched some of them start by timidly singing a couple of notes to inviting friends into the studio to get a sneak peek of their track. Some of them were at first too terrified to step into the booth, but then they ended up landing full performance roles! The confidence was so high you could often hear many of these youth yell out, ‘I can do that!’ whenever a job was offered, even if they had no experience. Through this project there was no shortage of skills being learned, confidence being built, and fun being had.”