Please join me on Saturday, November 16th for the 30th Performathon, a day-long event of mini student recitals that raises an important portion of our student scholarships for the year. CMCB awards approximately $300,000 in aid to its students annually. This year's Performathon is very special and personal to me because it will also be my last day working at CMCB (My farewell letter: https://cmcb.org/a-farewell-from-marie-tai-coo/). I will be performing with my ukulele group in the 3:00 p.m. hour!
CMCB has been a home for me for more than half of my life. I first came to CMCB more than 23 years ago when I was a young Boston Latin Academy student who was welcomed by a caring group of administrators and educators to be part of the CMCB family. Growing up with limited family resources, I found a special place at CMCB where I had access and opportunity for music lessons. More than the music lessons, CMCB provided a nurturing environment where I was able to thrive and dream of what is possible.
These experiences enabled me to continue my music studies at Berklee College of Music as a clarinetist and music business major. They also inspired me to pursue a life in community arts education where I could serve and help create pathways for other students to have the types of opportunities that I had. In 2004, I returned to CMCB as the registrar and was able to continue to grow as an arts administrator. Throughout all of my roles--Administrative Director, Associate Director and Chief Operating Officer--I was always reminded of why I do what I do. It is to support our students, the young to the young at heart. I see how CMCB transforms lives because my life has been transformed.
As I move into the next phase of my career in the Office of the Arts at Harvard University, the values that CMCB helped me to realize will be very much with me--hard work, teamwork, and kindness. I cannot be more excited about the work that CMCB is doing and am hopeful that our important work continues to foster healthy and just communities. It has been an honor to be a part of CMCB's rich history and I will be leaving with endless gratitude.