Over the course of seven days, 20 Mines students from the band, orchestra and choir presented 10 concerts along with a music and instruction program to underprivileged K-12 students, mining industry professionals and college students and faculty in Peru.
Robert Klimek, director of the Mines music program, said the group’s best experience was presenting a first-ever concert in the shanty towns of Lima.
“Many in the audience commented that they were grateful for the music, because this was the first live music their children had ever heard, and one said, ‘may ever hear,’” Klimek said.
Chemical engineering student Molly Groom is a soloist in the Mines choir. She shared common interests with native Peruvians, such as the “love of music and the drive to be an engineer.”
“I met several young students who wanted to become engineers, and that created such a special bond because we both knew that it’s not easy being an engineer,” Groom said.
Chemical and biochemical engineering student Ryan Czarny, who plays saxophone in the band, said the performances abroad was just one way he could use his musical talents and engineering skills to provoke change in others.
“After the trip, I have been inspired to continue to give back to my own community, not only through giving of my time and services, but also through my musical abilities,” Czarny said.
Besides music performances, the group attended a presentation on ancient Inca music, watched a few cooking classes and visited Machu Pichu.