Kathy Kucsan, Education Director and Center Co-Founder

My first job out of music school was working at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan. The staff was gathered together a day before students were due to return from all over the US and other countries. Our director delivered welcome remarks and then paused dramatically: “I can hear them,” he said. “They’re on planes, in cars. They’re on their way, they’ll be here soon and this place will come alive with music and sound.”

He was right, of course. Within 48 hours, there was music everywhere, absolutely everywhere. Interlochen is one of those places where the photo of violinists practicing in the pine tree forest is really true. The whole place suddenly burst into sound one day and it didn’t let up for the next eight weeks.

Photo: Interlochen Center for the Arts

Today, sitting in my very quiet office at the Center for Musical Arts, I recalled that long-ago talk and the impression it left on me. And then I thought about all of you practicing on your own in living rooms, bedrooms, basements, out on the back porch for the past 11 months. You’ve been taking lessons on your computer screens, iPads, phones. You’ve been meeting with your teachers online but haven’t been with each other in person for almost a year. I can hear you. The best thing is that I’ll see some of you next week when we — finally — get to have some in-person lessons again. The Center for Musical Arts building will come alive with sound and music, the way it’s been for the past 20 years.

So, welcome back and welcome home. Over the next several months, we’ll (hopefully) be able gradually open up more and more. Soon, even if covid isn’t entirely behind us, we’ll be making music with each other again as we’re able to. We’re going to look back at the cool videos we made and be amazed at our resourcefulness and creativity.

We’ll be glad we had a few concerts out on the porch, a few lessons outside in a tent. And we’ll be very glad when the day comes that we can sing together side by side, play in bands, and meet our teachers in their studios once again.

That day is coming soon and until then, we’ll be slowly and carefully adding activities as things become safer. Thank you all for making music in the many ways that you have. I can’t wait until our building bursts into sound with music made by all of you.