“When I do something I’m passionate about, it reduces stress, and I can go back to studying. The cello will keep music in my life.” – Maddy, Glenwood Springs High School Sr.


Cello is the instrument of my soul. When I play cello, I feel invincible, I feel strong, I feel beautiful. Cello lets me feel calm in a world that is not always that way. I play cello to release the stress from the day and escape reality.

            I am currently a Junior at Glenwood Springs High School. I am an avid musician; I play three instruments and love them all. Although I have been playing cello for the shortest amount of time, I know this is the instrument that I want to pursue going forward. Cello had always been an instrument that I have been drawn to. When my parents got me a cello and lessons for my sixteenth birthday, I was ecstatic! From the moment I picked my first string to the time I felt the friction of the bow gliding along the instrument, I realized that cello was for me.

            My long-term goal is to be able to be able to play at the collegiate level, so cello can stay a part of my life even after I leave high school. To reach this goal, JAS Aspen has so generously gifted me two lessons a month to help me make this fantasy a reality.

            I also have a few short-term goals I will track through the course of the year. Getting accepted to the PALS program through Aspen Music Festival would be one of them. I have participated in this program with flute and it has brought me leaps and bounds. Pursuing the program this year playing the cello will greatly advance my skills and help me progress. My audition to be considered for the program is a work towards.

Furthermore, one of the first songs I have ever hear on the cello was Bach Cello Suite No. 1. I brought this beautiful piece of music to my cello instructor about a month ago and he was eager to begin teaching me the Prelude. I acknowledge that this is a very difficult piece of music, so my goal will to be able to play the Bach Cello Suite No. 1 Prelude all the way through by the end of the year.

I am so excited for the amazing opportunity this program have given me. Because of JAS Aspen my dream of playing cello may become a reality. Thank you so much for such a generous gift.


Jazz Aspen Snowmass has committed to give Maddy two lessons per month before the due date of the 2017 P.A.L.S. summer program at the Aspen Music Festival and School. P.A.L.S. is an eight-week summer program for residents of the Roaring Fork Valley packed with private lessons, chamber music, music education activities, and exclusive access to the Aspen Music Festival and School’s summer season.

Participating for the last two years in the program as a flute player, this summer, Maddy hopes to be accepted into the program for the cello. JAS is funding two additional private lessons per month to help reach her goal!

See how the this very talented young musician expands her skill and musical horizons over the coming months! She and other JAS New Year, New Sound students will be featured with updates throughout the year.