DEL NORTE— During the Del Norte School District Winter Concert intermission on Dec. 17, Paul Orr presented a $3,000 donation on behalf of the South Fork Music Association. Earmarked for instrument repair and other music program expenses, the donation perpetuates SFMA’s mission.
Run by volunteers for more than 13 years, the SFMA hosts Rhythms on the Rio every summer and directs some of the proceeds to school music programs in Del Norte, Monte Vista, Center and San Luis. This is the third year Del Norte has received funds.
Band Director Clay Roesle accepted the check and worked with Choir Director Tamara Creel to guide the program for the evening. First, the fifth and sixth grade singers explained concert etiquette in rap format, followed by third, fourth, and fifth graders performing Christmas classics together.
Students from kindergarten to 12th grade sang choral arrangements for the rest of the night. Roesle conducted the middle school and high school bands, proudly noting how far they have evolved since the start of the school year when an estimated 85 percent of them had never read music before.
Roesle also tutors exchange student Amandeep Dullat, who performed “What child is this?” on the piano. Dullat learned to play the harmonium in his native India, but playing piano is new for him.
Orr, a former president and current treasurer, described SFMA and its mission. “We’re an all-volunteer, non-profit group providing quality musical events for children in the Valley.”