Composer Inspires Eighth Graders at Rye Neck Middle School

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Eighth grade students were treated to a special music workshop by Andrew Beall, an international composer and soloist, who filled the school’s auditorium with Broadway tunes on June 3. 

During his visit, Beall discussed his inspirations behind his music, shared how he started out in the industry and played a variety of songs from his musicals. In addition, he talked about the creative process and challenged the students to sing along to a song from his musical “Goodbye New York.”  

“An extraordinarily talented and accomplished young man, Andrew shared his knowledge with our students,” Principal Eric Lutinski said. “He travels and performs with world-class symphonies throughout the world, and his musicals, starring Tony-award winning actors, are captivating audiences in the states and abroad.” 

Two of Beall’s three musicals were produced last season. His first musical, “Song of Solomon,” recently finished a sold-out run at the Thespis New York Festival, where it was nominated for best musical. His second musical, “Goodbye New York,” will receive its premiere production in Kansas City in 2020. His third musical, “Platinum Girls,” was produced in September 2018 to critical acclaim. In addition, Beall has performed on Broadway in “A Gentlemen’s Guide to Love and Murder,” “In The Heights,” “Les Misérables,” “Lion King,” and “Spiderman,” as well as in numerous orchestras. If not performing at Carnegie Hall, he may be found at his regular gig, playing percussion and marimba for “Lion King” on Broadway. 

Beall’s visit was generously arranged and sponsored by the RN PTSA HS/MS STEAM Committee, chaired by Susan Banker, in collaboration with Lutinski and middle school teacher Jenny Theall. It was designed to expose students to the world of musical composition and composing a Broadway musical, as well as to help them connect personally to the experience. 

“Students have many opportunities and paths to consider for their own talents, and hopefully they were inspired to think differently about them and to develop and pursue them,” Banker said. “We also hope we inspired learning through close listening, participating, seeing and hearing how stories are told musically, lyrically and through the use of voice.”