CMS News Notes 


 “Freelance Classical Musicians are Performing Without a Net during Coronavirus Crisis”
“Freelance Classical Musicians are Performing Without a Net during Coronavirus Crisis” in The Morning Call featuring CMS teacher, Linda Kistler. 


"Concert cancellations related to the COVID-19 coronavirus are leaving scores of classical musicians with less work or no work in the coming weeks or longer. It is a devastating financial blow to a group of performing artists, who, in many cases, are already living hand-to-mouth.
Event cancellations are affecting performers in many fields, but are especially catastrophic to classical players who derive the bulk of their income from a mix of seasonal contracts and pickup gigs. The vast majority of this work is “pay for service” — that is, when musicians don’t play, they don’t get paid.
Violinist Linda Kistler, a regular performer with the Allentown Symphony Orchestra, the Bethlehem Bach Festival Orchestra, the Pennsylvania Sinfonia, and other groups, estimates she’s already lost nearly 10% of her yearly income in canceled engagements.
“I’m so sad about the situation. I just can’t imagine not having the opportunity to get together with colleagues and make music — it’s just heartbreaking to me,” she says.
Like many freelance musicians, with the loss of performing jobs, Kistler now depends on income from her teaching responsibilities. She maintains a private teaching studio at her home and is on the faculty of Moravian College and Allentown’s Community Music School.
“Both CMS and Moravian have mandated that I can’t do face-to-face lessons with my students. With one of my CMS students I’ve recently tried a video conferencing app called Google Meet,” she says. “That worked OK, with limitations — it’s difficult to play together with someone where I can’t look over their shoulder to see their music.”
Kistler still has 4 or 5 students who come to her home. “That’s also very limited. I have to wipe down all the doorknobs and stuff in between lessons, make the students wash their hands before lessons, and try to stay six feet away,” she says. “But even then, I can’t see their music.”
Kistler still practices her usual exercises to remain musically in shape, and still practices for gigs that have a high probability of being canceled. “There’s nothing else to practice for, so I think I’ll be getting out the unaccompanied Bach partitas and playing those for my own enjoyment,” she says.
While some musicians are considering other means of temporary employment to make up for lost income, Kistler hasn’t considered anything else — yet.
“My husband says we should use the opportunity to get the house cleaned once and for all,” she jokes and notes that there are some positive aspects of video instruction. “A local friend of mine is having bandoneon lessons on Skype from an instructor in Argentina, which is kind of interesting,” she says.
But like so many musicians, what Kistler misses the most right now is the social interaction. “I still have my teaching, which is meaningful to me, but that other part – the social aspect of getting together musically with friends — is no longer there.” 


CMS is proud to be able to keep our teachers working and our students learning with online lessons through TeacherZone and Google Meet.  
CMS Offering Online Video Lessons During COVID-19 Precautions
updated 3/26/20
CMS's first virtual lesson - Alexa with her teacher Joe Wagner  3/13/20
In accordance with the state mandate that all K-12 schools close through at least April 6, the CMS building will be closed from Monday, 3/16/20 through Monday, 4/6/20, but please check back for updates. During this time we will be operating remotely and offering online lessons to current students. We will accept new students on a limited basis.
All in-house classes, lessons, and events are suspended, 
including the Lecture-Recital on March 18, the Spring Recital on April 5, and the Annual Spring Brunch on April 25.
As planned, on Monday, March 16, CMS shifted operations to online-only lessons, fully leveraging the online learning platform in TeacherZone and Google Meet video chat.  
All group classes and ensembles, including Kindermusik, Big Band, Modern Band, & Kids Choir are cancelled. Refunds will be issued for cancelled group classes and ensembles. 
The administrative staff will be working from home and will be available during normal operating hours via phone and email. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the office at 610-435-7725 or 
Thank you for your patience as we work through ways to continue providing music lessons during this challenging time!

 CMS Annual Spring Brunch Cancelled Due to COVID-19 Precautions
Thank you to our CMS Volunteers!
As a non-profit charity, CMS relies on the support of our donors and volunteers to make it possible for us to provide affordable music lessons to everyone in our diverse community. We want to give a shout out to our dedicated volunteers currently helping out on several on-going projects here at CMS:
Lauren (far left) and Sally (center) continue to tag-team on organizing our extensive library of donated music. Lauren a life-long flutist and is currently a pre-med student at Lehigh University, where she also sings in the choir. Sally is a retired music teacher from Salisbury School District and our “Marie Kondo” of sheet music. Thank you both for lending your amazing organizing skills in our library!
Ajai (far right) comes to CMS through The Arc of PA’s Discover Employment Transitions (ADEPT) program, which helps match students with disabilities for the workforce. Ajai attends the Parkland School District and comes to CMS on Monday mornings, where he waters the pianos, cares for the plants, refills the water and coffee supplies, and cleans up the Kids Room toys. He loves art and music, including playing the piano and singing Adele songs to the staff.  

 Faculty Student Recital

 Welcome New Teachers!
Sunny Murthy
Ms. Murthy holds a B.A. in Music Education from Indiana University and a M.B.A. from Lehigh University. She is certified by the Suzuki Association of the Americas and has extensive experience teaching and performing classical music. She is a member of the Moravian College Community Orchestra and performs locally at events. Ms. Murthy will be available for violin lessons at CMS on Tuesday evenings.
Joseph Wagner
guitar | bass guitar | ukulele | mandolin | composition | recording

M.M. Jazz Studies, University of the Arts, Philadelphia (May 2020); B.M. Music Composition, Moravian College; Experienced educator, K-12 substitute teacher, & private music instructor focused on improvisation, traditional jazz, and gypsy jazz styles; owner, Keystone Sound Design; freelance composer for museum exhibits, television, & film; inventive guitarist leading several jazz ensembles & performing throughout Eastern PA.
John Leiderman

Mr. Leiderman joined CMS in 2016 as a summer intern and City Arts Camp counselor (2016, 2017, 2018). He also substituted for long-time CMS trumpet teacher, Matthew Nieznay, during the fall semester. He is a 2014 graduate of Salisbury High School where he was active in marching band (trumpet, two years as drum major), concert band, chorus, and musical theater. He recently completed a dual major at West Chester University, graduating in May 2019 with a B.A. in Music Education and a B.A. in Musical Theater. While at WCU, he was active in marching band and the a cappella group High Street Harmonix. He has appeared in numerous musical theater performances around the Lehigh Valley and beyond. John Leiderman is available for trumpet lessons at CMS on Tuesday evenings. 
David Fahim

M.M. Jazz Studies, Temple University; B.M. Music Performance, Moravian College; accomplished jazz pianist, music educator, classical & jazz accompanist; performs Lehigh Valley & Greater Philadelphia Area with cover/wedding band, Peter Johann Band. 


 District Band, Orchestra, & Chorus

Congratulations to our outstanding high school students who qualified for Districts!

District 10 Band
Laura Baxter, Flute, Emmaus High School (CMS student of Elaine Martin)
Mitchell Hourt, Trombone, Palmerton Area High School (CMS student of Nicholas Conti)
Meg Takahashi, Flute, Parkland High School (CMS student of Elaine Martin)
Julie Sizer, Mallets, Salisbury High School (CMS piano student of Dr. David Saturen)
Nicholas Brogle, Clarinet, Saucon Valley High School (CMS student of John Schwartz)
Erica Harvey, Clarinet, Saucon Valley High School (CMS student of John Schwartz)

District 10 Orchestra
Meg Takahashi, Flute, Parkland High School (CMS student of Elaine Martin)
Nicholas Brogle, Clarinet, Saucon Valley High School (CMS student of John Schwartz)

District 10 Chorus
Erica Harvey, Soprano 1, Saucon Valley High School (CMS clarinet student of John Schwartz)


Newcomer Academy Winter Concert at CMS 

The Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall was rockin’ this past Friday as over 100 students from ASD’s Newcomer Academy performed their Winter Concert. Newcomer supports students who are new arrivals to Allentown who have minimal English language skills. CMS teacher, Daniel Gonzalez, led six weeks of drum circle classes for grades K-6, which culminated in a walking field trip to CMS to perform for fellow students and their families. The program is funded by the ASD Foundation.  12/20/19 

Holiday Recital at CMS 

 Congratulations on a great performance by 55 of our talented students and teachers at the Dec 15 Holiday Recital! Performing in front of a live audience is an important part of the Community Music School experience and is key to developing well-rounded musicians.

We hope you enjoy these video highlights of the recitals. We wish you all a wonderful holiday season & happy new year!

2:00 pm Recital Highlights:
4:00 pm Recital Highlights:


Newcomer Academy Visits CMS 

Allentown School District's Newcomer Academy students visited CMS today for an exciting day of musical exploration. We definitely have some future drummers!  10/25/19

CMS Welcomes New Drum Teacher (Oct 2019)
Daniel Gonzalez
drums  |  Latin percussion

Lots of Fun at the 2019
Open House & Halloween Parade 10/13/19 

CMS Announces 2019-20 Recital Schedule
Monster Concert
Saturday, October 26 from 12:00 - 3:00 pm
Barnes & Noble, Promenade Shops
Holiday Recital
Sunday, December 15 at 2:00 pm
Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall at CMS
Faculty-Student Recital
Sunday, March 1 at 2:00 pm
Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall at CMS
Spring Recital
Sunday, April 5 at 2:00 pm
Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall at CMS
Year-End Recital
Sunday, May 31 at 2:00 pm
Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall at CMS
Gala Recital & Scholarship Awards
Sunday, June 7 at 2:00 pm
 Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall at CMS
August 2020, Plaza Tropical
 CMS Welcomes Two New Teachers (7/1/19) 
Joseph Mixon
guitar | bass guitar | ukulele | piano | voice 
Chase Morrison
cello | composition | conducting 

Dorothy H. Baker Recital Hall Dedicated (6/10/19)  Dorothy Baker Jeff Reed Larry Johnson  CMS Modern Band Dorothy Baker  David Saturen CMSLV Dorothy Baker 

CMS Gala Scholarship Recipients 2019
Martha Maletz CMS  David Saturen CMS Martha Maletz
BB&T Lighthouse Project 5/30/19
Lona Farr David Voellinger
The Press: CMS Plays a New Tune at Allentown's Former Lehigh Valley Club (1/2/19)

The Morning Call: A New Home for CMS (10/18/18)
Community Music School leaving Allentown Arts District (1/19/18)
50-plus years: Allentown Symphony musicians...John Schwartz Jr. (9/18/15)
Reading Eagle: CMS Expansion in Reading (8/9/15)
Community Music School Announces Expansion to Berks County (8/3/15)
Phantoms Charities Makes Donation to CMS of the Lehigh Valley (7/2/15)
Professor David Livert Joins Community Music School Board (5/18/15)
PICTURES: Community Music School recital at Miller Symphony Hall

4/10/15 - Discover magic at Community Music School (4/19/15)
Community Music School 'Holiday Recital' in The PRESS (1/5/15)

Former CMS Director George R. Schermerhorn Passes Away (12/8/14)
Community Music School in Allentown offers piano master class (3/1/14)
CMS provides education and financial help for those who want to learn (12/7/13)
National Guild form Arts Education: ADVOCACY: EMBRACING A CAUSE!