Rome Sentinel article on my Grandmother's 2008 Recital

Collaborative musical program Saturday to benefit art center Marie Antoinette Yanthis Long-time musician Marie Antoinette Yanthis has assembled a collaborative musical program, celebrating several generations of musicians, for 4 p.m. Saturday in the living room of the Rome Art And Community Center, 308 W. Bloomfield St. The public is welcome to attend, Seating is limited to just 65 people with some additional standing room. A donation will be suggested for admission with proceeds to benefit the center. Mrs. Yanthis was from Texarkana, Texas. She has resided in Rome for the past 66 years and will celebrate her 97th birthday June 28. She began her study of music and piano at an early age, and had a radio show called "Request" as a teenager. She has a great love of music, and has taught many young people. Her employment has always been the result of her musical skills. "The purpose of this collaborative musical program is to encourage musicians to perform in public, to provide a venue for students, and encourage them to share their love of music with others," she said. "To nurture students via the recital, that they reach their potential, and experience a heightened awareness of their abilities and talents." The center agreed to collaborate with Mrs. Yanthis on this music program as an extension of it’s mission to foster creativity, cultural awareness, and a strong community connection. The program will feature Victoria Bueno, Joshua Bueno, Nathanial Smith, Helen Phillips-Hannah, Carole Yanthis-Manley, Lorijo Manley, Megan Veschio, Marie Veschio, Penny Veschio, Aaron Browka, Melody McCoy-Cole, Greg Unangst and Dave Anson Morgan. Born in New York, award-winning artist Lorijo Manley spent her formative years shuttling between upstate and New York City, feeding her appetite for theatre and music. With her grandmother as teacher, she began studying the piano at age 5, and found her first guitar under the Christmas tree one or two years later. Santa delivered after she was caught torturing her mother’s violin trying to play it as a six-string guitar. Lorijo wrote her first songs around age 10. While in high school, she started the Theater Romps, a series of creative dramatic workshops for children, and won an acting contest. This inspired her to study theatre at Northwestern University, where she created the school’s first women’s performance troupe, Astarte Mettle, which garnered Lorijo a Time Magazine College Achievement Award. Manley was an official performer at the Athlete’s Village for the 1996 Olympic Games. In 1998, her singing was showcased in the theme music for the first Native American Music Awards, broadcast on A&E. Lorijo has shared the stage with artists including Richie Havens, Vernon Reid (of Living Colour), Catie Curtis, Tao Rodriguez-Seeger and The Mammals, Sam Shaber, Edie Carey, Trina Hamlin, Nicholas Barron, Ellen Rosner, Josh Max and Jade Maze. (http://www.lorijomanley.com) Unangst is a native of Rome and began playing the piano at age 11, which became his passion and career. He received his bachelor of music in music history and theory with a concentration in piano performance from Crane School of Music. He also studied at Florida State University. He received his master’s degree in piano performance from Crane in 2006. While in Rome, he worked extensively as an accompanist, solo performer and music director. He played for the Rome Community Theater, Capital Theater and the Utica Players. Other venues included weddings, theater events, and local nursing homes. In 2008, he was named head of the piano department of the YMCA Center for the Creative Arts, where he "is enthusiastic to share his skill and talent with the community." Phillips-Hannah has taught vocal music for 33 years — 32 years in the Rome City School System and one year for Oneida County BOCES in Holland Patent and Remsen. She is the organist for the Immanuel Baptist Church in Rome. Smith started singing at 4 years old. He participated in the African-American Children’s Theater Group of Rome, and was actively involved in the International Children’s Theater and Dance Group. In 2002, under the direction of Barbara Stovall, he won the Gospel Choir Championship at Darien Lake. In 2008, he sang at the Colgate University Gospel Fest accompanied by Kirk Franklin. For additional information, contact Executive Director Lauren Getek at 336-1040. The Center will open at 3:30 p.m. that day to begin seating guests. Seating will be first-come, first-served basis. On the net: www.romeart.org

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