On Thursday afternoon the 442s were in the Green Room preparing for upcoming recording sessions. The band is made up of Adam Maness and Syd Rodway of the Erin Bode Band, and Bjorn Ranheim and Shawn Weil of the St. Louis Symphony. They fuse many styles to create one that is their own. I stepped in when Adam was clapping out a beat, Shawn took up a repeated phrase and then Syd and Bjorn dug into the low notes.
Last Thursday morning, the 442s–Shawn Weil and Bjorn Ranheim from the Symphony and Adam Maness and Syd Rodway from the Erin Bode Group–and recording artist Brian Owens, who is also the Symphony’s IN UNISON Artist-in-Residence, played a concert at the Goldfarb School of Nursing. Goldfarb is one of our partners in the SymphonyCares program and provides an enthusiastic audience of nursing students whenever musicians from the Symphony perform there.
Along with the nursing students in attendance, orchestra students from Ferguson Middle School came to the show as well. Grace Fitter, Director of Orchestras at Ferguson Middle School, saw the concert as an opportunity for her students to realize that continuing education is accessible and possible for each one of them.
A visit to Goldfarb helps plant the seeds. Hearing Brian Owens introduce himself as a native of Ferguson adds sunlight to help the seeds grow. Maureen Byrne, Director of Community Programs, described the experience afterward: “It was a magic show.”