November, 2010

The teachers, coordinators and organizations that make up the MusicLink Foundation family wish you all a very joyful holiday season. We are quite excited about the progress we are making in our MusicLink 5000 Challenge explained in this newsletter. We also wish to thank all the supporters who sent in donations in response to our Annual Report. Missed our mailing? Click HERE to read about our 09-10 accomplishments. To save costs in these tight times, we will not be mailing out our annual holiday request for donations this year. Instead, we ask those who are enjoying this eLink newsletter to show your support by either contributing online by clicking the DONATE button below or sending a check to the national office, MusicLink Foundation, 1043 N. McKinley Rd. Arlington, VA. 22205. We truly appreciate your interest and support for our kids during this holiday season. Remember, every $100 donated = $400 in MusicLink services to our kids thanks to the generosity of our MusicLink teachers and businesses.


MusicLink Challenge 5000
Dec. 1st student total 4,090

The MusicLink Foundation has established a goal of reaching 5,000 students by our 20th anniversary at the end of 2012. As we begin this new campaign, we are reaching out to local organizations to help us reach our goal. More and more we are recognizing the impact coordinators can make in sharing information about the MusicLink program with their local teachers and schools. To help guide these coordinators in this important role, monthly e-mail “How-tos” are going out to them covering such topics as “How to Write Newsletter Articles”, “How to Utilize the MusicLink Website” and “How to Register New Teachers and Students .

Local music associations are increasingly offering their support to MusicLink by voting to waive local program fees for MusicLink students. This can make all the difference in allowing these children the opportunity to participate in recitals, exams, and festivals and teachers are excited to be able to offer this benefit to their students. As a result of the increased efforts of our local MusicLink coordinators, teachers are responding.

Since August 1st, we have reached over 175 new students. Thirty two new teachers, representing 15 states, are now active MusicLink teachers. Minnesota leads the way in new enrollment, followed closely by Louisiana, Georgia and Washington. With your help, we can totally fill our MusicLink map of active states within the next year for sure!

Welcome to the following new MusicLink teachers: CA: Michael Hemsworth; CT: Kathleen Theisen; FL: Ann Waite; GA: Robin Blankenship, Robin Engelman, Amy Wilson; IA: Holly Kukkonen; IL: Phyllis Calderon; IN: Nancy Felger, Lynelle Vogel; KY: Elizabeth Hickerson; LA: Jill Adoue, Robin Ebeyer, Cara McCool, Mary B. Smith; MN: Anna Bendickson, Deanna Carruthers, Sonja Clive, Nick Haus, Stacy Julson, Mary Jo Leier, Susan Nelson, Pamela Pickett, Kathleen VanDoeren; ND: Amanda Adams; OR: Ruth Sadilek; SD: Le Ann Wasmoen; UT: Denise Allen, Tami Baird; WA: Martha Garrett, Martha Lund, Ellen Pickell. Also, thanks to Kathleen Philipp (MN) and Ilene Tyler (OR) who are continuing teachers that were indadvertently omitted from our Annual Report. Please CONTACT US to volunteer to be a MusicLink Coordinator for your local community organization or music teacher association.

MusicLink Foundation
Recognized by Foundations

We are pleased to have a renewed presence on the Catalogue for Philanthropy website for 2010-11. The catalogue recognizes outstanding non-profit organizations in the Washington DC metropolitan area. The City of Fairfax Commission on the Arts has provided a grant for $1,250 to provide support for the MusicLink northern Virginia program, which includes lessons by MusicLink teachers, performances, instruments, and music. The Louise Zanar P. Fund of the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region will continue support of the DC MusicLink program this year, with a grant of $4,000.

The Philip L. Graham Fund, associated with the Washington Post, also recognizes the value of the MusicLink Foundation in the programming that has reached 700 promising students in need in the Washington DC metropolitan area. The fund has awarded the MusicLink Foundation a grant in the amount of $10,000 for instruments and program costs to help us reach our Challenge 5000 goal (reaching 1000 students in the DC area is part of this goal).

Earth Wind and Fire Auction

MusicLink recently used Charitybuzz, an online auction website that works with top charities and celebrities, to auction an Earth, Wind and Fire “celebrity experience”. The package included an autographed Earth, Wind and Fire guitar and concert tickets and backstage passes to the band's concert at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. The package brought in over $1,000 to benefit MusicLink. As a result of this success, MusicLink plans on using this website to auction other items in the future!

Holiday Shopping via the Internet?
Click on GOODSHOP for MusicLink

Make EVERY gift count this holiday season. Just go to and designate MusicLink Foundation as the cause you support and then click over to your favorite store. More than 1,600 top stores including Amazon, Toys R Us, Best Buy, Apple, Gap and more will donate a percentage of virtually every sale to the "MusicLink Foundation" when you fill in our organization name. You pay nothing extra - and you can even save money as GoodShop lists thousands of money-saving coupons and free shipping offers. Or, add our toolbar to your browser at - and your purchases will count even if you forget to go to GoodShop first! There's no easier way to support us this holiday season! Please spread the word.?

MusicLink Graduating Seniors

We are bursting with pride to have nine
2010 MusicLink graduates from high school.

The first three graduating seniors are all from the studio of Sherri Frush (NCTM) of Abilene TX:

Lauren Maurer (TX)- Lauren graduated with honors from Wylie High School where she was in marching, concert and jazz band. She won competitions including a finalist in the Abilene Philharmonic Scholarship competition and was a TMTA Semi Finalist in performance competition. She earned four I ratings on a Class I piano solo at state UIL this May and won second place in AMTA senior scholarship award. Lauren's senior recital was in May 2010. She earned medals in the TMTA state theory tests and Gold Cups in the NFMC festivals as well as other activities. In June 2010, she was a student performer in the Dennis Alexander Masterclass.

Lauren has performed several years at the TMTA convention ensemble concerts representing Abilene MTA and has been a featured artist at the Abilene Civic Center. Lauren served as an usher for the Abilene Opera Association and is also a community pianist who is in demand for receptions, weddings, etc. Lauren is currently on staff at Southwest Park Baptist Church in Abilene as the pianist. She is majoring in music this fall on full scholarship and is a collegiate member of MTNA.

Monya Brown (TX) graduated May 2010 and held her senior recital in June. She performed several years in the Abilene Music Teachers Association piano ensembles at the state Texas MTA convention, medaled on state theory tests, and won several local competitions. She earned medals in the TMTA All Star Festival and in June 2010, was a student performer in the Dennis Alexander Masterclass. Monya is in demand as a community performer for Abilene Artwalks and Downtown Dayz events. She also earned Gold Cups in the NFMC festivals and served as an usher for the Abilene Opera Association. At Abilene High, she was the first freshman to make the drumline and was very active in the band for four years.

Monya is also an artist and photographer so she merges her artistic talents together many times. She has won several awards for her work that have been on display in museums, center for contemporary art and in school competitions. She will major in art and minor in music at college thanks to various scholarships.

Hailey Harris (TX) graduated from home school May 2010. She has maintained a small studio for several years under the guidance of Frush Music Studios. She has performed at the state and national conferences for Abilene MTA Piano Ensembles, participated and medaled in state theory tests, festivals and other local events. Hailey is also an avid basketball player and has played at the national level with her homeschooled team. Hailey is on staff at Frush Music and will continue teaching in her own studio next fall as well. She hopes to begin college in the Fall of 2011 and is saving for college.

Molly Malec (IL) took MusicLink lessons with Susan Dudek (NCTM) during her four years of high school. She had not had private lessons before starting high school but she acclimated to them immediately and started to make progress. Throughout the four years she was always enthusiastic and eager to learn. She never missed lessons and was undaunted by even the most technically demanding pieces. She had a positive attitude and confidence in her own abilities, which will take her far in life. Molly is now attending Eastern Illinois University to study architecture and play in the marching band.

Clare Gallagher (MD) began piano lessons in 4th grade with Carole Gauthier (NCTM) in Maryland and graduated from high school this June. Over the years she has participated many MSMTA and CCMTA programs and recitals in addition to two studio recitals per year. “Clare has been a wonderful student in addition to being a fine young lady”.

Katie and Kelly Tuininga (MN) have been students of Kay Hawkins (NCTM), in Minnesota for over eight years and MusicLink students for the past three. As college students, they will continue their private piano lessons with Kay, which brings her great joy! Katie and Kelly are first year students at North Hennepin Community College where they plan to achieve their Associate of Arts degree and then transfer to the University of Minnesota where Katie hopes to get into genetic research and Kelly a career as a dental technician. Both will continue to follow their passion for music with Katie pursuing piano, violin, and choir and Kelly continuing with piano and choir.

Arielle Chasteen (OR) graduated from high school in June 2010. She has taken piano lessons for nine years with Arlette Irving of Roseburg OR. Arielle was first violinist in the advanced and intermediate Douglas County Youth Orchestra. She reached Level X of the OMTA piano syllabus as part of her piano training. Arielle plans to major in music in college.

Stephanie Woods (VA) studied with Teresa Compos-Falk of Yorktown VA for 13 years. Stephanie was an exceptionally talented pianist who has won numerous VMTA and MTNA piano competitions at the state level. She attended the International a. Institute for Young Musicians for a number of summers and performed Beethoven Piano Concerto with a regional orchestra in 2008. Upon graduation, she was offered full scholarships to nine colleges. Stephanie has decided to study with Alan Chow at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL.

“That wasn't who I wanted to be.”

MacKenzie Krell (WA) realizes the importance of music in her life for reasons beyond the norm. She took lessons for 11 years with Chelle Rose of Spokane WA and achieved gold and silver medals at the Musicfest Northwest. She enjoyed being a camper and counselor at the Holy Names Music Center Piano Camp, with help from the MusicLink camp scholarship program.

However, in 2008, MacKenzie was diagnosed with epilepsy and soon found that the side effects of her anti-seizure medicine took a toll on learning in school and in music. In her own words: “My grades suffered, my focus became none to speak of, and somehow I lost my drive to play music. It became such a daunting task to sit and try to play a piece. I couldn’t focus and wouldn’t remember because of memory loss. That wasn't who I wanted to be. So I buckled down, sought a new way to study, a new way to learn, and a new way to enjoy music. I put my hands on the keys and returned to music. I managed to improve my performance in school, graduating as a distinguished scholar. I was accepted into the University of Washington. I went through surgery to eliminate the cause of the seizures. As I am coming off of the anti-seizure medication, I can feel my memory and focus coming back. And with that, my love for music and for life.”