Music breathes life into the St. Paul’s ethos of inclusivity. The sounds, the immediacy, and the overall experience of making music bring us together.
“Making music is human,” explains Guy de Chalus, who teaches drum and choral music to students from Fourth Grade through Eighth Grade. “When we create music, we develop friendships, get to know each other, and build relationships with our teachers. It’s all about finding common ground.”
What began as a choral program opened to rhythm and percussion as a way of providing another portal to music, a response for students who just weren’t singing with the same enthusiasm when they entered the upper grade levels. St. Paul’s percussion program started with five drums. The music teachers have since collected instruments like agogo bells, shakers, sticks… and more drums.
African-American Cultural Evening (AACE) may be the best time to watch the work in action. Over 30 years ago, St. Paul’s chose Black History Month to perform music from the Civil Rights
Movement. To this day, we come together in rhythm and song during what has become perhaps the most exciting of School concerts we’ll attend each year. It’s our humanity, they are our children, and we surround ourselves with the power of music as the St. Paul’s community has done for decades.