Tri-M Club shares musical talents with the community

January 12, 2010 — by Vivian LeTran and Sarah Hull

A string quartet softly serenades a large group of guests at the Saratoga Rotary Club while they enjoy food and good company on Dec. 11. Stationed in a corner of the room, the group provides mellow music and easy entertainment.

The group, made up of seniors violinist Cindy Chang, violist Kevin Hsu and violinist Carolyn Chen and junior cellist Walter Hsiang, are part of the Tri-M club, who are beginning to perform more often since it is now the holiday season.

“We have a lot of gigs lined up in the next few months,” said senior Cindy Chang, president of the Tri-M club. “[People] ask us to play at holiday luncheons, benefit dinners and similar events.”

Club members typically play string instruments, but in the past they have had singers as well.

“There’s no limit to what kind of music we perform,” said Chang.

Tri-M, which stands for Modern Music Masters, is a music club made up of approximately 15 students.

Each month, they play music at hospitals, such as Good Samaritan, and community centers, including the Saratoga Retirement Center (SRC). Twice a year, they have student concerts at one of the officers’ house, where all of the members perform.

In addition to community service and concerts, the club sometimes receive requests for quartet performances, which consist of two violins, a cello and a viola, through their adviser, Michael Boitz. The quartets either receive food, money, or sometimes both.

“The gigs are a lot of fun and really rewarding because the people actually appreciate it,” said Chang. “It’s a good opportunity to play music outside of the classroom and reach out to the community at the same time.”

The string quartet recently played at the Saratoga Rotary Club on Dec. 11 and will play there again on Jan. 25.

“Gigs are fun because you get to play music that you enjoy with your friends and not be in a formal setting,” said senior Carolyn Chen, a Tri-M officer. “It’s really rewarding because [the elderly] are genuinely thankful that you’re there and they give us a lot of compliments. I think it’s really good that we have a music community service club on campus although people don’t realize how much we do.”

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