Our Concert

Dear Readers,

Hi everyone!! We hope all of your projects went well. Ours certainly did.

Our concert went smoothly. People really enjoyed the concert and were impressed with our talents.

We raised hundreds of dollars, which we donated to the Japanese Red Cross.

We are happy that we could help out those in need halfway across the world.

However, we had some difficulties as well. We certainly need to improve our advertising.

Although we advertised throughout the school, we did not reach out enough to the local community.

We would like to thank the following:

From the Top and Orchestra Iowa- For guiding us throughout the planning of our event.

West High- For letting us use its auditorium.

West Music- For letting us use its Steinway concert grand piano.

The attendees- For coming to our concert and supporting us.

And our fellow Iowa Makes Music friends- For giving us helpful advice

Here is a slideshow that we made that sums up our concert. Enjoy!


–Jonathan, Riko, Ivan, David


20-June-2011 at 12:46 pm Leave a comment

Project Results

So the school year is over, and it’s already time to prepare for marching band next year! Four out of the five Callanan percussionists I worked with are signed up for band, which is great! But what’s even better is that two of them auditioned for drumline and made it- and they are both girls! They seem to be having a great time so far at our drumline rehearsals, and I think they are more comfortable because they already knew me. I’m really glad I took the time to go to Callanan and work with these students, and now I know that my work has had a positive effect.


14-June-2011 at 1:13 pm Leave a comment

Final Celebration!

Last Sunday the brave souls of the Iowa Makes Music Arts Leadership Program Cohort 2011 (say that three times fast) faced tornadoes to join together in Amana for our final celebration. There was dinner, there were families and friends, there were fantastic displays of the  Arts Leaders’ hard work, there were even musically inspired cupcakes! It was a perfect evening. Here is a little video snippet of the event. Photos soon to follow. Congratulations to all for a fantastic spring, and, if you’re still finishing up your project, good luck!


27-May-2011 at 9:00 pm Leave a comment

Final Celebration!

Hi again, everybody!

I just wanted to thank everybody who was involved in the fantastic event we had this evening. I can’t possibly think of a better way to have wrapped up the project than this was. Everything was perfect, and there was not one detail that was left unconsidered… from the vegetarian lasagna to the music-themed cupcakes. =) Thank you so much to everybody who worked to make our final celebration as amazing as it was!!

Jenny, Linda, Sarah, and Joanne– thank you a thousand times for all of the hard work you have put into this project. I know I can speak for all of us when I say that you have made a bigger impact than you could possibly know. What you have taught us, and led us to realize about ourselves will stay with us forever, and this is an experience that I know I will never forget.

It was amazing to see everybody one final time as our projects come to a close. Although I know I still have some work to do over the next few of weeks to truly wrap up (and will be blogging about it!), I am proud to say that I felt a great feeling of accomplishment when I saw how far all of us have come over the past couple of months. Congratulations to everybody on all of your hard work!

I’m pretty sure this isn’t the last we’ll hear of each other, as I know all of the Arts Leaders are destined for great things. To everybody involved in the 2011 Arts Leadership program, thank you for making this a wonderful experience! It means a lot to me.

Bye for now,


25-May-2011 at 1:25 pm Leave a comment


Hi all! I hope everything is well on your end.

Sorry for my lack of posting; these past couple of weeks have been crazy!! My project is picking up speed and there is so much to do! =)

I have tons to update on, so here goes…

People in my community have been so fantastic about supporting my project. I have sold so many wristbands to excited families and students, who are just as excited about this project as all of us are. Their donations and enthusiasm have made this project extremely gratifying! Also, I have decided on the type of violin which I plan to purchase with the money I have raised by selling my wristbands! The website is below…


The CEVN-1W (the first type shown on the website) seems to have several favorable reviews (4 and 5 stars) on Amazon.com, and the quality and price range is about what I’m looking for. Needless to say, I’m extremely excited! I’m debating between colors (all five are visible if you click on the “Back to Electric Violins” link in the upper right of the page) but am a huge fan of the black… it looks very simple and elegant. Any advice would be very appreciated!

Things are picking up pace with my video as well. I plan to do some final filming and the editing this week, and should be good to go by the 3rd. My goal is to get it done in time so some local middle schools could show it this year in music classes, as motivation for the kids to stay in music when they enter high school. However, school ends on June 2nd, so we’ll have to see what time allows. I’m keeping my fingers crossed, though!!!

I’m hoping that for next time, I’ll be able to post some more media: video clips for feedback and final editing advice, along with more information and pictures about the electric violin. This week will be busy, but so exciting! =)

Stay tuned (no pun intended!)– more to come soon!

Bye for now,


23-May-2011 at 1:32 am Leave a comment


it was so much fun. seriously though, it was an absolute blast, and may be repeated next year.

i am constantly amazed with the caliber of student that attends my school, and last night was no different. so much talent, so much pure passion and appreciation for music. i just fell in love with West High again, and am so proud to be a Trojan.

and to Sarah Kolder, so much thanks i hope your heart swells with it–she filmed this and put the footage together in about 2 hours. you are lovely, and i appreciate you beyond words.

❤ zora hurst

21-May-2011 at 6:55 pm 3 comments

Total Recap

After my long absence from blogging, we have some things to talk about!  I’ll start with lessons.

The quartet and I have thus far been giving more lessons to our Harding Middle School students than anything!  I personally have a number of very interested 7th graders who have been soaking up musical knowledge like sponges.


5-May-2011 at 1:01 pm Leave a comment

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