Greenacres Elementary Students Make Marimba

The Greenacres Marimba Ensemble (G.A.M.E) of Greenacres Elementary School had the unique opportunity to perform at the Zim Fest in Olympia on August 25. The fourth and fifth grade students and their teacher were among 48 groups from around the United States invited to perform at the annual festival celebrating music and dance from the Zimbabwean regions of Africa.

G.A.M.E. launched last year at the Central Valley elementary school by music teacher Patrick Kerley.

“Marimba is all about patterns so it is a great style of music to turn on their brains and get them going,” explained Kerley about the impact of the music on his students. “You see them really shine. When they work hard and accomplish something, it gives them confidence to try harder. They are really pumped about our trip to the festival in Olympia.”

During the 2006-07 school year, the group delivered more than 18 performances for school and community events. The program is so popular that Kerley added a second marimba group for interested fourth and fifth grade students. The students practice before school three days each week during the school year.

Click here and scroll down the page for a video file of a recent story in the Spokesman-Review.

Other Featured Topics