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Siya Patel Honored as November Music Student of the Month

PARSIPPANY  — Students from Parsippany, Morristown, Randolph, Chatham, and Mendham schools were honored as Mayo Performing Arts Center’s November 2023 Music Students of the Month – Outstanding Orchestra Members — before the Thursday, November 2 performance by Pink Martini. Siya Patel a seventh-grade student from Central Middle School was among the honorees.

Students were nominated by their teachers and were chosen by the Theatre’s Education Department based on their commitment to excellence in the performing arts. The students were honored on stage before the concert.  One honoree, Matthew Bozza of Morristown High School, had the opportunity to perform a solo with Pink Martini on one song in the concert.

The Theatre will honor a group of students every month throughout the season and invites area teachers to nominate students for this honor.

The 2022-2023 Music Student of the Month program is supported by The Walter F. and Alice Gorham Foundation, Inc.

About the November Music Students of the Month (bio supplied by their instructors)

Siya Patel

Grade 7, Central Middle School; Parsippany; Nominated by Darby MacAdams

Siya is a smart, kind, and hardworking student who is beyond eager to learn. She is always pushing herself to learn new pieces and skills. Siya consistently participates in class by answering critical thinking questions and even demonstrating for her peers. Every day after class, she comes up to me asking for a lesson during her lunchtime, which speaks to her dedication to the violin, learning, and music. I am very lucky to teach Siya, and she is most certainly an outstanding orchestra member.

Matthew Bozza

Grade 12, Morristown High School; Morristown; Nominated by David Gallagher

Matthew is an incredibly talented trumpet player and puts forth his best effort in all of his ensembles. He is currently the Trumpet Captain for the Marching Band, Principal Player for the Wind Ensemble, and Lead Trumpet for the Spectrum Jazz Ensemble. Additionally, Matthew has played numerous times with our high school orchestra, and pit orchestras, and spent the summer performing with the Essex County Summer Players Orchestra. 

Hannah Cochran

Grade 12, Morristown High School; Morristown; Nominated by Norma Davis

Hanna Cochran is an outstanding senior member of the Morristown High School Orchestra, where she serves as cello section leader.  Hanna is an extraordinary student who is passionate about music.  She has been a dedicated member of the Orchestra for all four years at MHS, as well as performing with the Camerata, Pit Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, and Abbey Orchestra.  Hanna is an expressive performer who always strives to capture the style and the story in the music.  She is an excellent collaborator who works hard to help all of the other cello players develop expertise and confidence, voluntarily peer-teaching the cello lessons and sectionals each week.  Hanna’s cheerful personality and ability to share techniques, fingerings, rhythms, and sound production tips make her a great role model, cultivating camaraderie among the cellists in the orchestra and helping each player to thrive.  Hanna can always be relied upon to give her best effort in rehearsals and performances.  She is diligent, sensitive, adventurous, and kind, and all of these traits are evident in every stroke of her bow.  Hanna is naturally curious and loves to explore the many ways music can be expressed.  Hanna is a truly wonderful musician and natural leader who exemplifies what it means to be an outstanding orchestra member.

Jamie Eck

Grade 12, Delbarton School; Morristown; Nominated by Andrew Lyman

Jamie is the Delbarton Symphony Orchestra’s principal clarinetist and was a member of the 2023 Region 1 HS Band and NJ All-State Band. Jamie also serves as our Tri-M Music Honor Society President and performs in our school Pep Band. Without a doubt, Jamie is a terrific musician who has always been serious about music. His musicianship is of a high caliber and he stands out at school performances. Jamie is always willing and eager to help other musicians improve. I can always count on Jamie and he will have a bright future in music. 

Claire He

Grade 8, Randolph Middle School; Randolph; Nominated by Genevieve Sallemi

Claire He has set herself apart as an outstanding violinist, team member, and leader in the orchestra. Claire not only participates in the 8th grade orchestra but has also participated in the after-school honors orchestra club, Con Brio, for the past three years. Claire has attended every lesson, has come to practice during lunch, and is constantly trying out new music. She has auditioned for the NJSMA Regions orchestra regularly attends private lessons and performs outside of school in the greater community. While Claire excels in her musical abilities, the true reason I’d like to nominate her is because of her patience during class, her willingness to help her peers, her humbleness when it comes to her abilities, and the consistent kindness that she shows to everyone around her. Claire has worked so hard over the course in orchestra and in life and she certainly deserves to be recognized.

Santiago Montes

Grade 8, Frelinghuysen Middle School; Morristown; Nominated by Samantha Tomblin

Santi is a violist in the 8th-grade orchestra here at Frelinghuysen Middle School. He has been a member of the orchestra and Chamber Orchestra for all three years in this school and has also served as section leader during many of our concerts. Santi was one of 2 middle school orchestra students selected to play as part of the pit orchestra last year for our school’s production of Peter Pan. Santiago is a very hard-working, responsible, and dedicated student.  He is kind and collaborates wonderfully with other members of his section and the orchestra as a whole. Santi asks thoughtful questions and is excited to grow in his knowledge and love for music. Attending this concert would be a wonderful opportunity for Santi to see his instrument represented as part of a more unique ensemble and inspire him to continue with his studies as he enters high school next year.

Isabella Santucci

Grade 11, School District of the Chathams; Chatham; Nominated by Liam Keller

 Isabella is a highly organized and motivated musician, constantly striving to achieve her high standard for performance in everything she does. Isabella is a strong student leader and her peers and faculty respect her academic work and character.  As a member of the orchestra program and music peer mentoring program, Isabella was confident during rehearsals and consistently demonstrated excellence during many professional performances. Isabella has demonstrated leadership abilities time and time again being in charge of the 2nd Violin section for her Junior year in the Concert Orchestra, and taking on extra responsibilities to help the ensemble thrive.  Isabella has been a constant positive force of energy motivating her peers to excellence.  Always interested in the concerns of others, she was available to help students requesting assistance and offered to teach free lessons to younger students to foster their love of music. 

Allen Wu            

Grade 8, Mountain View Middle School; Mendham; Nominated by Leigh Carpenter

Allen is one of, if not THE most accelerated string student our school has seen in the seventeen years I’ve taught here.  He plays his violin at a very high level not only technically, but also MUSICALLY.  In addition, I am impressed by his thinking.  He understands musical concepts and relates all aspects of music including aesthetics, technique, and theory to his and our orchestra’s playing.  But being in an ensemble is about more than the individual and I am so grateful that Allen is so generous with his knowledge.  He peer-mentors classmates, sharing with them the knowledge he has acquired.   He does this thoughtfully and encouragingly. The motivation and playing levels of his classmates are rising because of him.  I am so very fortunate to have Allen as a student. He inspires me and is a joy to teach.  He is a huge asset to our music program and our orchestra.

Frank L. Cahill
Frank L. Cahill
Publisher of Parsippany Focus since 1989 and Morris Focus since 2019, both covering a wide range of events. Mr. Cahill serves as the Executive Board Member of the Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce, President of Kiwanis Club of Tri-Town and Chairman of Parsippany-Troy Hills Economic Development Advisory Board.
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