The Waldorf School of Garden City is proud to announce that seniors Franklin Rankin and Oren Maximov have been invited to Bentonville, Arkansas to play at the Walmart Corporate Headquarters. Walmart has funded the duo to fly out for the Walmart Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. - an annual gathering of Walmart employees in celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
"We did a performance for the National Urban League a few months ago," said Franklin. "Someone from Walmart heard us and invited us to fly out to Arkansas. We fly out on Sunday, January 20th, perform on Monday, January 21st, and return to New York on the same day!"
A student at Waldorf since 5th grade, Franklin plays the guitar – an instrument he has been playing for the past 7 years (in addition to numerous other instruments). He is a resident of Freeport, New York. Oren, who has been at Waldorf since 10th grade, plays the stand-up bass – an instrument he has been playing for the past 4 years. Oren is a resident of Roslyn, New York. The duo will be performing with two other students from their jazz group – the Advanced Jazz Combo – at the Harlem School of the Arts.
"I just love playing," said Franklin. "I try to play in as many places as I possibly can and this is another opportunity for me to do what I love." Franklin hopes to pursue jazz and music in college after Waldorf. Oren remarked, "Playing jazz is fun and it helps stimulate my mind. I am always thinking when I’m playing." Oren hopes to continue his jazz studies on an extra-curricular basis in college.
Music instruction at the Waldorf School begins in the lower school, where children study the basics of music theory in the classroom and practice singing and recorder playing. They move on private violin and/or cello lessons in the latter half of their lower school experience and through the middle school years, with the option of continuing in the high school. All students in the Waldorf music program perform in the school chorus, orchestra or jazz ensemble.
In addition to performing at numerous Waldorf events, the students will be performing at the upcoming 65th Anniversary Gala on Friday, May 10th. Music ensembles from the Waldorf School – or individual student soloists – will often play at various events. "We’re always open to playing gigs," remarked Franklin. Anyone interested in hiring the students should contact Franklin at email@example.com.