Walpole High School and Middle School musicians collaborate to raise money for Walpole food pantry

Founded in 2010, the Music for Food foundation an event on Friday, Nov. 16 at the Red Cherry Cafe to gave students from grades eight through 12 a chance to display their musical skills, raise some money for those in need, and support a new small business.

The Red Cherry Cafe. (Photo/ Eric Hurwitz).

“Students do not usually get a chance to perform other than in their school concerts, and they never usually get to choose their own repertoire,” senior Katie Hurwitz said, “chamber music is an intimate setting where musicians work closely with their friends without a conductor to play a piece they enjoy.”

Wind Ensemble including pieces from Louis Armstrong, Carl Strommen, and Europe perfromed by Jason Giampapa, Charlie Lyon, Myles Campbell, Michael Leacoma, and Kieran Stover (Photo/ Brianna Deasy).

Led by Hurwitz as her National Honor Society service project, the students performed several different chamber music pieces from artists like Charles Mingus and Beethoven.

"Moonlight Sonata" by Ludwig Van Beethoven performed by Nina Roco. (Photo/ Brianna Deasy).

“The music department has greatly improved in culture just this year, and I wanted to take leadership to help grow the program outside of just school,” Hurwitz said, “I know that poverty and hunger cannot be solved by one person but I want to do as much as I can to ensure that people less fortunate than I am have a chance to be fed.”

"Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" by Charles Mingus, performed by Aaron Suttle and Chris Issa. (Photo/ Brianna Deasy).

The first piece, “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat” by Charles Mingus, was performed by seniors Aaron Suttle and Chris Issa, which led into other pieces like “Moonlight Sonata” by Ludwig van Beethoven, performed by freshman Nina Roco who also performed “Meditation de Thais” by Jules Massenet.

"BBC's Sherlock Medley" by Michael Prince and David Arnold performed by Maggie Singer and Jess Elmhurst (Photo/ Eric Hurwitz).

“I'm fairly confident and solid with the piece, and it's one of the first major pieces of piano repertoire I did,” said Roco, ” I'm glad I got to do this - I got a chance to perform and I got to help with a fundraiser for a good cause.”

"Merry Go Round of Life" by Joe Hisaishi performed by Juliana Webster, Veronica Bock, Karissa Della Valle, Rachel Burke, and Jess Elmhurst (Photo/ Eric Hurwitz).

The next set of musical pieces included renditions from artists like J.S. Bach and Louis Armstrong. One piece, performed by senior Smera Gora and freshman Jadene Le, was arranged the day before the performance, and they also included improvisational harmonies while they performed.

"HANN (Alone)" by (G)I-DLE performed by Smera Gora and Jadene Le (Photo/ Eric Hurwitz).

The students collected 40 non-perishable food items to donate, as well as $435 which was donated to the Walpole food pantry. However, the music for food foundation has created over 500,000 meals for those in poverty to date.

"La Vie En Rose" by Edith Piaf performed by Katie Hurwitz and Sanjana Bhagavatula. (Photo/Brianna Deasy)

“The Music for Food event was so successful that some people even requested that I make it a weekly event” Hurwitz said, “and if I could make it a weekly event, I would.”

"Perfect" by Ed Sheeran and "When I Was Your Man" by Bruno Mars performed by Lisa Jair and Caroline Gebhardt (Photo/Eric Hurwitz).

Hurwitz and the other students who performed agree that they enjoyed performing for a good cause, and hope to raise money for the food pantry again in the future.

"Despacito" by Luis Fonsi performed by Lisa Jair and Katie Hurwitz (Photo/Eric Hurwitz).

“I think having live performances at Red Cherry really would expand their number of customers,” said Hurwitz, “and giving students a chance to perform would not only improve the WHS music department, but give students the confidence to express themselves and be heard.”

"Air Varie" by Charles de Beriot performed by Sahiti Gollakota (Photo/Eric Hurwitz).

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