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Melodies for Remedies student club brings music to seniors

Melodies for Remedies members during a July virtual concert.
(Courtesy)

When the COVID-19 pandemic put an end to live performances, three students at The Bishop’s School in La Jolla started a club called Melodies for Remedies to put on virtual productions geared toward seniors in hospitals and care facilities.

“This club was created during the COVID-19 pandemic so we could give online and live concerts, and also compilations of recordings through our YouTube channel to share music around the community,” said Grace Sun, a rising junior, pianist and founder of Melodies for Remedies.

The club’s goal has been to help prevent isolation and the other social side effects that have been particularly hard on senior citizens. So far it has held more than 10 concerts for hospitals and senior homes in California, Virginia and Hawaii. It also has more than 50 members from across the United States.

“Our goal then and our goal now is to help seniors and senior homes and patients in hospitals with our music,” Grace said. “These seniors and patients are not able to see their families and friends on a regular basis, so we hope our club can bring a variety of remedial music to help them experience the same comfort and belonging.”

Melodies for Remedies Zoom events have included a Valentine’s Day concert in February and a summer concert in July that drew more than 50 viewers. The club also has an in-person concert at St. Paul’s Senior Services near Balboa Park on Aug. 16.

“When we get to be there in person with our audience, there is going to be a better connection,” said Paul Madany, a rising senior who also plays piano. “When you can make eye contact, when you can see who you’re playing for and they see you, there’s just something that being in person creates that Zoom can’t re-create fully.”

In addition to the senior citizens in the audience, the club has also given an opportunity to student musicians who have had fewer chances to perform because of the pandemic.

“I could take my talents from home and use them to help people who need music in a time of need,” said Joseph Aguilar, a rising senior and singer. “It came at the right time. Me needing an outlet, a way to perform in front of people, and I use it as a way to help people. It was a great combination.”

For more information, visit melodiesforremedies.org. Videos of the club’s performances are available at youtube.com/channel/UC_9QwYkgbb1ls1Nj0HRyjiA.


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