Bring on the beat: Chester company give boost to school music programs

By Shawn Cunningham
© 2024 Telegraph Publishing LLC

Zacciah Blackburn holds the drum steady while Dorothy Stone uses a rubber mallet to dislodge the head. Photos by Shawn Cunningham

Last Wednesday, Zacciah Blackburn and Dorothy Stone delivered a musical gift to Chester-Andover Elementary School.

Blackburn and Stone, owners of Sunreed Instruments located on Old Stage Road in Chester, had offered both CAES and Green Mountain Union High School a gift of $1,000 each.

CAES music teacher Mallory Figoras opted to take the gift as equipment that Sunreed could provide at cost, thus increasing the value of the gift. This included replacement heads for the school’s 20 Remo Tubano drums. The Tubano name is a trademark for a children’s drum that can be played by hand or with mallets or sticks. The Remo company says it helps introduce rhythm, which it calls it “a basic building block of all music.”

Stone looks on as teacher Mallory Figoras fits a drum with a new head.

As he and Stone demonstrated how to remove the original drum heads, Blackburn noted that they had seen a lot of wear and tear. Blackburn held one of the drums steady while Stone wound up and whacked the underside of the head several times until it popped off. Figoras installed the new head on the drum, then said it sounded great.

GM music teacher Alex Brady said the school had not decided what the Sunreed gift would go toward, although he noted that the school could use it for its  jazz program. Brady said one goal is to bring vibes to the school’s percussion collection.

According to its website, Sunreed has been in business for more than 40 years providing “specialized world musical instruments and educational and therapeutic services in the field of music and sound healing.”

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