April 2022 Newsletter


Inspiring Hope!
April 2022

♩ Director’s Corner

As a high school student at Walt Whitman HS in Bethesda, Bryan Eng was a busy young man:  he volunteered at hospitals and at a VA long-term care facility in Baltimore, recorded for Tacy Foundation’s CDs, and sang and played jazz at Waverly House HOC senior residence. When he was in college in Chicago, he entertained a Senior Day Care Center in Loudoun County, VA on Zoom. He contacted the Foundation to offer his music message.

Always kind, generous, and positive, he showered the audience of seniors, VA long-term care hospitals, and other hospitals with his presence and his music.
Bryan’s Album, his senior project at Northwestern University in Illinois, was extraordinary! He sang, arranged all of the songs for the jazz band at Northwestern University, and handled all of the business side of marketing. I know this because I personally ordered 100 for the USO at Walter Reed NMMC for Christmas gifts to friends and family.

I was hoping our readers might be able to order copies, but the album is sold out. However, I am certain that Bryan is already at work making the next one.
Check out Bryan’s web site: www.bryaneng.com. His humility and care for those who are needing encouragement inspire me.  Follow him in his journey.

The 2022 Tribute USBs were produced for first responders and military service members. This album includes three songs that Bryan sang and accompanied himself. In the middle of practices for his school play and senior year college application rigors, he made time to record these songs at Rolling Hills Recording Studio for the troops. Again, this year we will send the messages from this album.
Bryan's most recent achievement: "A Dream Come True . . . I'm on Broadway!"
A Joyful Experience - Samuel Wang
On Sunday, January 23, I went to go perform at a Tacy Foundation concert at the Brookdale senior center. That concert was my first in 22 months due to the Covid-19 quarantine, and I was rather excited to participate in such a colorful event relative to the dull grayness of quarantine. It seemed that the seniors were also excited about the event. I could tell from the light gleam in their eyes and the smiles on their faces. At first, when the concert started, only about three or four people were in the audience. However, after we started playing, more people trickled in. They stayed in the hallway, listening to the music, perhaps as not to interrupt. They seemed to enjoy it. The concert was very well received, and afterward, many seniors came and congratulated us, and asked us when we could come again.
When my performance started, I was very nervous. I felt both strange and that I hadn’t practiced enough. But when I started to play, the music soothed the tension inside of me, and I slowly relaxed. I can tell that my music had the same effect on the audience members.

I really appreciate all the people who helped with the concert, especially Mr. Antwon Coates, who is a staff member at Brookdale. When we got to the senior center, it seemed that the staff were not expecting us. Later, we got a message from the activity director at Brookdale that she was out of the community due to an emergency and didn’t get a chance to convey the message. However, as soon as we told Mr. Coates what we were there for, he helped us get started by giving us performers temperature tests for Covid. He alerted the residents of the senior center, and he, along with some other people, helped us set up the performance area.
I also need to thank Ms. Holliday. She called each of us the day before the concert and suggested that we be at the senior center half an hour early. This half an hour allowed us and the center staff to have enough time to go through all the special check-in procedures and set up the performance area.
The music, the smile, the cheers, the clapping, and the expressions of thanks, all those moments we’ve missed so much during the quarantine, finally came back alive. I look forward to the next live performance at Brookdale.  -- Samuel Wang
A Friendly Helper - Lauren Kim
Ever since I could toddle, I would listen to the upbeat melodies of children’s music programs, translating my excitement into a series of jerky dance moves and joyous squeals. Music truly is a sweet blessing to the ears as well as a wonderful source of relaxation, entertainment, and joy; it also bestows the gift of discipline and communication to its players. As a pianist and a high school student, I sometimes find it difficult to balance the rigor of schoolwork and music education. Every week, my boss named “assignments list” never fails to plop a massive file filled with taxing tasks into my hands. The occupation called student is a tough one! Yet, music has helped me through it all. The piano is my stress reliever, enabling me to rejuvenate my mind and relax my tense body. Playing 30 minutes of Disney songs or eighties music on smooth black and white keys truly has a therapeutic effect that helps me increase my focus and replenish motivation when I revisit my homework. Practicing an instrument also develops the skill of discipline, which I personally believe to be the best source of diligence and perseverance.
However, my favorite part about music is its ability to connect with people. First of all, it is the perfect icebreaker! The dreaded presence of an awkward silence is almost always extinguished when music is played. People gather around the piano and once-quiet children light up with excitement, asking me to play their favorite movie soundtrack songs. It makes my day to see others enjoying my music. It also amazes me how beautiful melodies have the power to spark conversations with all people, extrovert or not. Music is something that I absolutely adore; I have learned that it is beautiful and extremely versatile, integrating itself into everything I do.  -- Lauren Kim
Music as Medicine - Zoya Bharmal
By entertaining and relaxing us, music has long been regarded as a vital component of our lives. More recent studies have also shown music to be an effective remedy for improving physical health. Previous studies showed that live music improves immune health by boosting the body’s production of natural killer cells, which directly correlates with an increase in efficiency of the body’s immune system. Music has also proven to be an effective means of relieving stress by reducing the body’s production of its main stress hormone, cortisol. There is a growing interest in music as a means of improving patient experiences during hospital stays: a 2013 study even indicated that music can have a greater calming effect than prescription drugs for patients with operation-induced panic.
Studies like these inspired a mid-Atlantic neonatal unit to analyze music’s impact on premature babies recovering in the NICU. Over 250 premature babies had live musicians sing lullabies, mimic ocean sounds, and play two-tone drum rhythms in hope of aiding in their physical and emotional recuperation. Researchers found that all of these musical treatments were effective in calming the babies during their stay, as shown by their slowed heart rates and decreased crying. Music therapy continues to be an effective means of ameliorating health, and undoubtedly has great potential to be integrated into effective patient care. For more information see: https://www.apa.org/monitor/2013/11/music. – Zoya Bharmal

Zoya writes, “I began studying music 15 years ago and quickly became involved in the Tacy Foundation’s mission of inspiring hope and healing through music.”
Brief Update from Needham, MA Tacy Club
As first reported in our February newsletter, a group of musicians have initiated musical performances inspired by our activities in the DC/Maryland/Virginia area. Matthew Weber and his team at Needham, MA are pioneers in that part of the Northeast. Here is a brief update from Matthew.
I hope you are well. I want to give you a brief update: yesterday [March 16], other musicians and I went to perform at Needham Center at the Heights, performing a wide variety of music, including classical, jazz, and patriotic tunes. We played for an audience of about 30 people. Below are some pictures of us playing. 
We’re also working to begin our partnership with another facility in the area. We’ll keep you posted!  -- Matthew Weber
The Tacy Foundation
Educational Mission: Foster youth development through music, story and mentoring
Philanthropic Mission Empower youth to discover and use their gifts in service to others
Social Mission: Build community partnerships and create intergenerational connections
      Whom We Serve
          Service members
          Economically disadvantaged
          Individuals who want to serve
     How We Serve (Programs)
          Live music concerts
          Reading Express®
          Piano Pals®
          Guitar Pals®
          Composers’ Circle
          Music USBs
          Musical equipment
          COVID projects: video, email, cards, puzzles for outreach to the community
Charlotte Holliday, Founder and Executive Director
Matthew D. Scott, Graphic Editor
Michael Favin, Chief Editor
Siddharth Kondam, Teen Editor
Ethan Schenker, Teen Editor
Donations are appreciated.  All adult and teen staff are volunteers.  No salaries or benefits. Every dollar you donate goes to supplies for all projects offered to the community. 
Thank you!  
Donate online via PayPal at:  www.tacyfoundation.org.
Or send your donation to: 
The Tacy Foundation 
Box 2334

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