May, 2013


There is music all around us at the end of each school year. MusicLink students enjoy performances in studio end-of-year recitals, festivals, and competitions. Students enjoy sharing music with shoppers in malls while helping our kids through playathons - in Minnesota, New Hampshire/Vermont and Virginia. We always love sending MusicLink students to camps to enjoy summer musical experiences where they thrive with others who share their enthusiasm to play music.

We celebrate the teachers who make these experiences possible for our students. We also thank all the donors who support our mission to bring musical training to promising students in need across the country and into Canada. MusicLink relies solely on charitable contributions to reach these students and "link" them with teachers who agree to teach them for whatever they can pay for as long as they want to learn. The summer is a time when we seek funding to prepare for the expenses of the next school year.

We appreciate any donation you can make at this time by clicking on the donate button below. Enjoy this issue of eLINK and have a WONDERFUL summer!


MusicLink Presents Research
at MTNA Convention

Dr. Joanne Haroutounian, Executive Director of the MusicLink Foundation presented a session entitled "What Music Means to Me: A Study of Promising Students in Need" at the MTNA Convention in Anaheim CA. The session shared research findings from an analysis of nomination forms completed by teachers and parents and annual student evaluation forms. The research showed that our nomination form had high reliability (.86 - .91) and students overall showed a high level of potential talent rated by school teachers, independent teachers and parents (3.19 - 3.28 out of 4).

The research examined 3,000 student evaluation forms and compared progress differences in year 1, 3 and 5. Again, students showed relatively high evaluations overall (3.15 - 3.37 out of 4), with highest ratings in the area of repertoire progress. Qualitative analysis of comments made on evaluation forms showed the most prevalent comments (45%) dealt with the close relationship between the student, teacher, and parent as well as student commitment. Teachers also included comments on student creative interpretation (40%), practice (37%) and potential talent (34%).

Research is continuing to seek out "what music means to me" through interviews with prior MusicLink students who are now 18 years and older and were in the program at least five years. The study also includes interviews of their teachers and parents. This research should be completed by the end of the year and already includes valuable comments from these young adults:

"Some people are happy with winning awards or performing well at competitions, but I think what's more important is just to be able to think musically and think creatively and know how to interpret music and read it and listen to it. It's a really valuable skill that will carry with you the rest of your life."

MusicLink Playathons and Promise to Practice Events Raise $14,250 for MusicLink

Any organization can sponsor a playathon - with "kids helping kids" by sharing music with the community at malls and other public venues. Simply click on the playathon button on our Supporter Info page on our website and join the fun.

Students who gather pledges totaling over $25 receive a backpack. Those raising over $100 have photos in this eLink issue, with those raising over $250 awarded with an Ipod Shuffle or $50 gift card.

MN: The Minnesota MusicLink program held another successful Playathon at the Mall of America on the weekend of Feb. 9th/10th. Despite the snowstorm that moved in on Sunday, 221 students and 2 teachers performed in the Nordstrom Court raising over $10,700 for the work of the MusicLink Foundation. Forty two teachers were represented with students performing on piano, violin, flute, oboe, bassoon, guitar, and voice. Schmitt Music provided the beautiful Boston Grand piano for our pianists.

The 3 top fundraising studios were: Kim Nichols 35 students raised $1,743, Marianne Bryan's 18 students raised $1,195 Grace Kopitske's 14 students raised $981.30. These are amazing amounts and a remarkable show of support. Sue Wege, Director of Regional Coordinators oversaw the playathon and sends kudos to everyone who helped to make this Playathon a great success.

VT/NH: The Upper Valley Playathon was held at the Powerhouse Mall in W. Lebanon, New Hampshire on May 4th. The Playathon included students from 5 piano studios and one cello studio and a former voice student of regional coordinator, Judy Vanesse, from Montpelier. The Playathon raised a total of $709. Shop owners voiced their happiness with the music and all wanted to know when the students would return. It was a fun day of continual music with very satisfying feedback.

VA: The Virginia Playathon was held on May 5th at the Tysons Corner Center in Vienna VA, with 58 students performing on piano, violin, viola, flute, clarinet, guitar, saxophone and Chinese harp. The students were from nine studios in the northern Virginia area. The playathon raised $2,186. Lai Lan Ko's studio had 28 students performing and raising $1,146 from this single studio! Once again the sound of music filled the air in the mall for shoppers to enjoy by sitting in the audience or simply passing by with a brief stop to listen.

IL: The Western Illinois University Collegiate Chapter of MTNA followed their annual tradition of a Promise to Practice week of solid practice by 25 college students raising pledges from faculty and friends. Thanks to Marina Nir and Amy Broadbent for helping organize the event. This dynamic college chapter raised $656 for the MusicLink Foundation and have inspired other college music organizations to consider a Promise to Practice event in the future. Check out our website for details (Supporter Info Page). From college to studio, one week to multiple months - promise to practice works!

Business Partners - Always There to Help

Keys 4/4 Kids: What would we do without our wonderful Business Partners? A great example was the recent donation of a baby grand piano to a Minnesota MusicLink student by Keys 4/4 Kids, a valued partner of MusicLink. They had previously donated a Baldwin Studio piano to this family and when they learned that this dedicated MusicLink student had outgrown that piano, they very generously swapped out the Baldwin for a beautiful Yamaha baby grand. Since getting the new piano, MusicLink teacher, Cindy Nelson-Quesada reports, "My student is practicing 2 hours most days and her expression has grown by leaps and bounds. Many thanks to Keys 4/4 Kids!"

Hungry for Music & Louise P. Zanar Fund: Hungry for Music donated a set of African drums and a full drum set to the Washington DC MusicLink Program, with teacher Chris Sharp working with over 50 students in various after school programs in DC and Maryland. Our thanks to Jeff Campbell, director of Hungry for Music, for his continuous support. In addition, a grant from the Louise Zanar Fund provides ongoing funding for the DC. Shining Stars program, which provides private lessons to six students who have shown outstanding progress in these after-school music programs.

Joanne Haroutounian with Lawrence Von Weigel

Courtier Lux: MusicLink shared in the launching of the Courtier Lux online deluxe designer shopping website with a portion of the first orders donated to the MusicLink Foundation. Courtier Lux founder, Lawrence Von Weigel, presents a check for $1000 to Joanne Haroutounian, Executive Director of the MusicLink Foundation.

New Business Partners: National and Regional: Innovative Piano, Inc.; Music Theory Online. Local and State: CO: Lafayette Music, Lafayette. MA: Bushell Piano Movers, Framingham; Byer Piano Service, Mendon. NY: Murphy's Music & Violin Shop, Melville. RI: Dan's Music Center, Warwick; Rick's Musical Instruments, Inc, Cumberland.

MusicLink Expands
to Include Online Lessons

The MusicLink Foundation is calling on teachers and pedagogy programs across the country to assist in a new project to reach the many students we have on our unlinked list. In many cases, these students do not have available teachers in their community for lessons. This opens up a wonderful opportunity to include online lessons to reach these deserving students. Check the website for information about teaching online lessons (Teacher Info) and email us with questions or details of possible current instruction of eligible MusicLink students online.

New Teachers Added
to the MusicLink Roster

We welcome the following 23 new teachers added in the past two months, bringing our current total to 367 and our overall total to 2029. CA: Julia Takeoka. CO Gabrielle Dugan. FL: Emily Breezee, Jamie Fenton. MN: Gretchen Davis, Laura Glassel, Bethany Gonella, Dean Harrington, Betsy Keno, Jill Sheppard. MO: Briana Frieda. NH: Ursula Emond. NM: Suzanne Dawson. NY: Helena Almberg, Carla D'Amore, Catherine Mahler. OR: Kathryn Rigall. VA: Nina Compton, Jaime Guitz. Kimberly Ryan. WA Susan Huie, Ilene Tyler. ON (Canada): Valerie Laengert.

CORRECTIONS from last eLINK: The teacher of Amber Howard, featured in last month's eLINK was Tanya Brooks (not Tara Brooks). Also, Glory St. Germain's website is

Playathon Students
Donating $100 or More


Christian Batchlor

Michelle Berg

Madeline Budde

Noelle Diaz

Ethan Hyman

Juliana Karals

Sydney & Megan Keen

Grace Kroese

Tia Lubinski

Ellie Lyons

Katherine Magowan

Julia & Jennifer Meles

Alanna Moe

Jenna Nielsen

Gian Paz

Jackie Sheehan

William Stutsman

Isaac Zook-Stanley

Parker Zachman
(teacher, John Donahue II)

Inara Zayic

Zack Mone

Gita, Soumya, & Ajay Raman

Vermont / New Hampshire

Calli Goodling

Niko Moriglioni

Amber Moriglioni



Jafeth & Luke Simon

Charles & Amalia Mack

Sabrina Martin