In August, We held a productive meeting with Michelle Hauser from St. Mary Magdalene, Napanee, discussing their music program, Harmony Music Lounge. During our discussion, we identified a significant gap in the community: the lack of a regular music program in local schools. This realization prompted extensive planning, leading to the establishment of a Music School. With Michelle Hauser’s permission, we adopted the brand name Harmony Music Lounge,  aiming to maintain consistency throughout the Diocese of Ontario.

A dedicated volunteer team from St. Thomas’ came together to support the Harmony Music Lounge initiative. After several meetings, we decided that launching the music program during March Break week would be an excellent way to engage children and parents. 

Our goal is to encourage them to explore music and sign up for weekly lessons. After months of dedicated planning, securing exceptional instructors, and rallying our incredible team of volunteers, we’re thrilled to announce the launch of our much-anticipated Music Camp! We are offering a variety of lessons including Ukulele, piano, reading music, and learning rhythm using items from the Kitchen, which we are calling “Kitchen Band”! The kids are eager to come up with their own band name for the ukulele group – from “Strumming Stars” to “March Break Stars” – though it’s not finalized yet! They are also learning to create their own band poster. The ages are from 8-12 yrs. 

It’s been a journey filled with hard work and dedication, but seeing this day finally come to fruition makes it all worth it. However, there is more work to do as Belleville Harmony Music Lounge moves forward. We need more community teachers, must reach more students, and require fundraising efforts.

A massive shoutout to our incredible team of volunteers from St. Thomas’ parishioners, friends, and family, who have been unwavering in their support every step of the way. Their dedication and commitment have been the backbone of this endeavour, and we couldn’t have done it without them!

Shwetha Jayathirtha