Cincinnati Adaptive Music Camp allows kids to make music despite disabilities

By: Jill Eichhorn

Aly Amend is excited to go to camp this year. The 9-year-old girl from Finneytown is one of a handful of children taking part in a camp specially-designed for amputee or limb different students who would like to learn to play piano or a stringed instrument, such as violin, viola, cello, or bass. Aly plays the cello with the help of an adapted music stand.

Aly’s mom, Deb, is organizing the first ever Cincinnati Adaptive Music Camp. It is a six-day music camp that will be held each morning Aug. 5-10 at the College of Mount St. Joseph. The camp culminates with a recital which will be held on Saturday, Aug. 10 at 2:00 p.m. in the Recital Hall at the Mount. There are still spots available for kids who need a little help getting started so they can learn to play musical instruments.

“There aren’t many opportunities for children with disabilities to take part in a summer camp experience for music,” said Deb Amend. “Some children can play musical instruments beautifully if some adjustments can be made. This camp brings kids together with the technical side of music so children and parents have the tools they need to become budding musicians.”

Students, who will choose from the piano or string tracks, will learn from private lessons, group classes and lessons in music history and musicianship. Partnering with a prosthetist, as well as volunteer engineers from the local non-profit organization May-We-Help, students at the camp will have their instruments adapted to meet their unique needs through special stands, devices and additions to their prosthesis.

The cost of the camp is $300 which includes individualized videos, an individualized music education plan which covers the scope and sequence of accommodations and adaptations or the following year, and ongoing support for the student’s private lesson teacher.

For more information about taking part in the camp, please contact Deb Amend at cincinnatiadaptivemusic@gmail.com or call 513-218-1197.

The College of Mount St. Joseph is an undergraduate and graduate Catholic college that provides an interdisciplinary liberal arts and professional curriculum emphasizing values, service and social responsibility.