This is Volunteer Mike reaching out to my Memory Matters friends. Our beautiful and talented 14-year-old volunteer – Amélie Ratliff – is performing on November 4th with the Savannah Youth Orchestra at the First Presbyterian Church in Savannah. All proceeds from the event go to help the hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico. There is no entry fee but donations are welcome. The concert is entitled  Music with a Mission and it will be wonderful!

For those of you who love to watch and listen to Amélie play violin, this is a golden opportunity to witness her perform in concert, and it is a worthy cause!

See you there and thank you!

Dress Rehearsal, by John Ratliff

They had just performed the annual Halloween concert the day before in the fine arts auditorium on the Armstrong campus. All five levels of the youth orchestra participated. The kids wore costumes and they all played very well. By the time the last group took the stage the crowd had thinned out a little, mostly families with small children that had already performed. But we always stayed until the end. During the past five years Amélie has worked her up through the progressively more challenging levels. Now, at fourteen years old, she is a member of the highest level and sits on the first stand of the first violin section, proudly holding the title of assistant concertmaster.
But this dress rehearsal was unexpectedly incredible because it was held in the church where next Sunday’s benefit concert will take place, raising money for the hurricane victims in Puerto Rico. The multi-leveled stage, high, arched wooden ceiling and stone walls of the intimate chapel made the orchestra come alive like I have never heard before. As I sat in the very last pew, goosebumps formed on my arm. The powerful brass and percussion vibrated through my body, followed by lush, beautiful waves of the string section’s vibrato. It was also a visual feast because the ascending levels made it possible to see the soloists when they played. What an absolute privilege to be in that church and hear this group of exceptional young musicians make magic happen right before my very eyes!

Should you wish to support this noble charitable endeavor to benefit on-going hurricane relief in Puerto Rico please attend the concert at 5 pm on November 4th at the Savannah First Presbyterian Church 520 Washington Ave., Savannah (across from Savannah arts high school). There is no admission charge but donations are anticipated.

For questions about Memory Matters or to schedule a free baseline memory screening please call 1 843 842 6688.