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No Stopping Performing Artists in Red Bank

Red Bank Borough Public Schools & The Monmouth Conservatory of Music at the Count Basie Center for the Arts celebrated Black History Month with an outdoor recording session!

In February, violin and piano students from the Red Bank Middle School performed at the Monmouth Conservatory of Music on Chestnut Street in Red Bank.  Although it was a little demanding to play outdoors at that time of year, the performers did a great job of honoring Black History Month and showcasing the partnership between the Monmouth Conservatory of Music and RBMS.  Our Red Bank Rockets showed a positive attitude and did their best to play with energy and enthusiasm. 

Students from the Red Bank Middle School are currently benefiting from a community teaching partnership between the Monmouth Conservatory of Music and the district. Three teachers have weekly lessons with the students. The program is led by Dr. Lucy Chen, Director of the Conservatory, Holcombe Hurd, Middle School Media Arts and Music Teacher, and Ms. Laura Petillo, Violin Instructor at the Conservatory.  The students attend (both virtual and in-person) lessons with the conservatory and the district.  Students also have access to online lessons and resources which are hosted on the remote learning website hosted by the district. 

Click on the video links to watch:

We Shall Overcome and our Competition Rehearsal

 Ms. Laura Petillo shared her thoughts on the program: “Working with the students in the Red Bank Strings Program has been an amazing journey.  Some of them, I’ve known for a while, and I’ve seen them come so far, and work so hard. The other students that I’ve just met this year, it’s been so inspiring and incredible for me to see how they are retaining information, some of them even performing right on the spot. This is an incredible group of students, and they are so dedicated, and they love music, and they are very talented. It has been very rewarding for me to work with them both virtually and then when I get to see them in person, and I get to hear how beautiful they all sound together, when they play together… and I go...OH! You guys did it! This is working! I’m so proud of them! So they are on this incredible journey and I can’t wait to see where it takes them!"

Comments from Ms. Laura Petillo



RBMS student Lily runs through her competition piece “Meditation” accompanied by Dr. Chen, Director MCOM


Dr. Lucy Chen offered this quote: “Education is an important part of our mission at the Count Basie Center for the Arts, and we are committed to offering quality music education programs to our Red Bank community. The Red Bank Borough Public Schools partnership program allows students to build music foundations, foster a life-long appreciation for the arts, and provides performance opportunities for students to showcase their achievements with family and friends.  Despite the challenges brought on by COVID, we are proud of our students’ commitment and hard work and excited to share their accomplishments through our community recitals!”

 RBMS Music Teacher Mr. Hurd commented:  “I am very excited to be involved in this partnership as on a personal note some of my first musical experiences almost 50 years ago were with Herr Molzer, the founder of the conservatory.  I think our students are so lucky to be working with musicians and instructors of the caliber of Dr. Chen and Ms. Petillo.  Music is a lifelong passion, and these children have a unique opportunity to have this university-quality instruction at such a young age. I’m really honored to be given this chance to work with the conservatory, and I believe this partnership is already showing that love of music can flourish even in the most challenging times. I am particularly thrilled that some of these students are engaging in a statewide music competition. I would like to share my gratitude for being included in this partnership.”