This story is part of a bi-weekly series that celebrates people who are reaching across a divide to “build bridges” with those different from themselves. The Sparkt Bridges series is made possible with the support of UPMC.
Playing her musical instruments for a man who was dying changed Tejal Dahake’s life. This young musician found her calling not in a grand concert hall, but in a hospice care facility. “It’s an extraordinary feeling to know that this might be the last live performance they have – and I’m bringing it to them,” says Tejal. Take a look at how she used this experience to start something remarkable:
Although Tejal plays the flute, viola, piano, guitar, violin (you get the idea), she knew that there were more people in need than she could perform for alone. The solution? She founded We Play Music for You, a nonprofit dedicated to fostering awareness, acceptance and respect for older generations and the end of life.
I was fortunate enough to witness a performance by Tejal and three other talented young girls at Holy Family Manor, just north of Pittsburgh, PA. The songs ranged from classical to contemporary, even including a medley of all the armed forces songs (by request to celebrate Veteran’s Day). “I thought they were all very good,” said Marcheta Parks, one of the residents who watched the performance. “They picked very difficult instruments to play!”
The glowing reviews didn’t stop there. The residents and staff had nothing but kind things to say about the kids from We Play Music 4 You, whose mission statement is to “inspire younger generations to bridge the inter-generational gap through music.”
With a mission statement like that, how could we not feature them on Sparkt Bridges?
If you would like to support this mission and help bring the gift of music to the sick and elderly, a donation page can be found here.
The group is always on the lookout for new student musicians as well, so if you or someone you know may be interested in performing, you can sign up here.
The Sparkt Bridges Project is produced
with the generous support of UPMC.
Life Changing Medicine.