CSI Guitar students participating in the worldwide performance of Perspective

The Music Teachers for Global Peace will be premiering their first Virtual Concert for Global Peace in the Manzulli Board Room on the Staten Island, NY campus of Wagner College on May 6, 2018 at 5:00pm, a video performance in which Guitar students from the College of Staten Island have taken part.

The Virtual Concert for Global Peace features a commissioned work composed by Michael DeVellis, co-Founder of the Music Teachers for Global Peace. The work, titled Perspective, takes the performer and listener respectively on a journey around the world with three melodies as traveling companions. These melodies take on new life with each exploration of different cultures and musical traditions found around the world. The piece is performed by student musicians and their directors from around the world including Hong Kong, France, Venezuela, Sweden, and the U.S.

Discussing how the College’s students became a part of this project, CSI Guitar Ensemble Director Edward Brown said, “One of the founders of the Global Peace Project, Melissa Morris, wanted a diversity of instruments in their video. She wished to include guitars and knew that I directed the CSI Guitar Ensemble. Melissa contacted me and I agreed to be part of the project. Seven CSI students of the CSI Guitar Ensemble appear in the video.” Brown added that he “originally accepted the invitation because it offered a rare opportunity for my students to perform to a “virtual” conductor. They had to watch the screen and follow him exactly. Only with extreme precision by all groups around the world could this video succeed. And of course, drawing attention to world peace is always a good thing.”

In addition, members of the SI Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Dan Auerbach and James Minenna, combined with students from Curtis HS, also participated. Other Staten Island-based ensembles that contributed to the performance include the Staten Island Technical High School Symphonic Band and Orchestra and Wagner College’s Concert Band (co-directed by CSI graduate, Jose Diaz).

Co-founder of the project, Melissa Morris, underscored the significance the Music Teachers for Global Peace,” saying that the organization is “inspired by children and music and their power to help create a harmonious world. We are music educators who spend our lives working to teach young people to be empathetic, expressive, and empowered through the art of music making. If music can change one person, it can change many. Using our talents, we seek to inspire others around the world to grow and multiply PEACE and HARMONY everywhere. With the universal language of music as our main mode of communication, we ask everyone to become part of something greater than themselves…inspire PEACE around our world to deflate the power of global dissonance and unrest — for our children, their children, and those that will come after them.”

Regarding the event on May 6, Brown stated that it “is a ‘premiere’ of the video—a sort of ‘video-release’ party. No live performances by students will be given. It’s an opportunity for participants to meet the composer of Perspective, the co-founders, local music directors, and other students.