Music in the Mountains goes to school

Pagosa Springs students and teachers were recently treated to a captivating music education experience, compliments of Music in the Mountains Pagosa.

The Red Shoe Piano Trio, comprised of members of the music faculty of Fort Lewis College, presented not just a music performance, but a student-friendly discussion of their instruments and how they are used, as well as information about chamber music. Students enthusiastically interacted with the trio during the lively question and answer sessions.

Children from first through fourth grade at Pagosa Springs Elementary School attended the morning assembly. Pagosa Springs Intermediate School’s fifth and sixth graders, along with more than fifty home-school participants, attended in the afternoon.

The Red Shoe Piano Trio was formed in the fall of 2003 at Fort Lewis College in Durango. Their name originates from the fact that they all love to wear red shoes when they play music together.

The trio has performed throughout the region to captivated audiences. They are dedicated to performing the great standards of the repertoire, while ardently championing contemporary compositions. Katherine Jetter is the cellist for the group and Lisa Walters is the pianist. Both are original members of the trio. Kasia Sokol, violinist, is the newest member of the group, having joined the group about 18 months ago. Each maintains an active teaching and performing career apart from their trio experience.

While many people assume that Music in the Mountains exists chiefly to present a series of summer concerts, an equally important function for this organization is to bring music education experiences to children in Pagosa Springs. Music in the Mountains Goes to School is a central aspect of that function.

Through generous donations from local businesses and private sponsorships, more than a dozen promising string and piano students from our community have had the opportunity to attend Conservatory Music in the Mountains which is held each summer at Fort Lewis College. These Pagosa youngsters are exposed to the highest quality teaching from world-class professional musicians. College scholarships have also been offered over the past seven years.

Donations to support these efforts are accepted throughout the year by contacting chairperson Janis Moomaw or any other members of the MITM steering committee, all of whom volunteer their time to this worthwhile cause.