Trimble Students Travel Through Time With String Quartet

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With the help of a string quintet, students of Trimble Elementary used their imaginations to travel through time.

The Essence Quintet of Dayton visited the school on Friday and played tunes from the 1700s through present-day.

Fourth-grader Riley Campbell said she especially enjoyed “The Dance of the Tumblers.” While she listened, she imagined herself tumbling all around the gym.

“I really liked the last one, too,” she added. “It made me want to move.”

The members of the quintet (Barbara Van Doren, Cindy DaPore, Alice Tatum, Mary Novak and Carol Suddath) also play with the Miami Valley Symphony Orchestra, an all-volunteer community group.

The last song they performed was called “Heart of Fire,” by Lauren Bernofsky. The performers selected that piece as a tribute to the man who made their visit possible — Jim Cotter.

Bernofsky wrote the song for exemplary people in history — Martin Luther King, Jr., Susan B. Anthony and Nelson Mandela — those who’ve persevered to accomplish their goals.

“We feel Jim is the same for this community,” said Tatum, who plays viola. “He’s an inspiration.

“It doesn’t matter how small you start, (Cotter) sees it if you just start there, you’ll get to the end,” said Suddath, who plays the cello. “He started painting fire hydrants, and now the group has completed 89 homes. He sees these kids as possibly having music in their lives, so he’ll start small with us.”

Cotter, co-founder of the Glouster Volunteers, knew the group through DaPore, who plays violin. Although the group played for free, Cotter did arrange for free lodging at Burr Oak Lodge, where they played on Friday night.

Cotter said he hopes the experience will get students exposed to and interested in stringed instruments.

“You might come to love one of these instruments,” Cotter said to the students. “Eventually, we might have a string orchestra here in our school.”

DaPore said she picked up the violin because her grandfather played. During the Depression era, he accepted violins as payment for the work he did. The one she played with on Friday was 107 years old.

“The fellowship of music is a wonderful dimension of my life,” DaPore said to the students. “It can be in yours, too.”