Lessons learned, friendships formed at SSC

By Hayley Cardillo

I begged my mom for three years to let me take piano lessons, and when she finally signed me up, I know she thought I’d quit in a year and move on to something else that grabbed my eight-year-old attention span. Nobody thought I’d be going to college in “Music City” with a passion for music and a lifetime of experiences in my pocket.

For many of those experiences, I thank SSC. From my first Performathon at age 11, to accompanying my high school choir on stage at Disneyland, and everything in between, SSC cradled me with support, lessons, and a love that without which, nothing would have been possible. In giving me my first chance at performing, SSC fostered my love and built my confidence to put myself and my art out for the world to appreciate and enjoy the way I do, as well as providing me the opportunities to do so.

I’m a classically trained pianist, but at 15 I was asked to join an SSC rock band to play keys. I said yes, not knowing how much this decision would change the course of my music path forever. After playing in this band for a little over a year, I joined my current band, Yardsale, as a bassist, despite never having a bass lesson before. This is arguably the best decision I’ve ever made. Writing songs with Yardsale inspired me to begin writing my own songs, leading me to discover my passion for writing and producing, and deciding I want to do that for the rest of my life. I’m not a fan of making life-changing decisions, especially huge ones like this, but I am so certain that this is the path I belong on. I’ll be majoring in music business with an emphasis in music production at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee in the fall, and I couldn’t be more excited!

But back to SSC, it’s not just the musical experiences that have made the last seven years so special. Through all of the programs, performances, summer camps, and more, I’ve made some of the best lifelong friends I could ask for, and had incredible teachers too. It’s so amazing to be connected with people who share the same passions as me, who I wouldn’t meet in my town alone. These experiences have definitely made me a lot more social too.

South Shore Conservatory didn’t just change me as a musician, but as a person. Performing made me respectful, practicing gave me patience, and bands taught me teamwork, all of which preparing me to be a hardworking young adult wherever my path takes me. Thank you Sarah Troxler, Jesse Stiglich, Eve Montague, Nancy Meredith, and everybody else who gave me such a good experience it makes me so sad to say goodbye.

Learn more about South Shore Conservatory’s arts-based programs at sscmusic.org or find South Shore Conservatory on Facebook.

Hayley Cardillo is a senior at Marshfield High School.

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