Last December, I had the rare privilege of collaborating with pianist and composer Eric Genuis on a day of performances in various correctional institutes in Northeast Ohio.
As a talented and highly creative composer and pianist, Eric strives to create performances that fill listeners with dignity, no matter their life status. Our day began with at 7am at the Lorain Correctional Institute, a stark, cinder block and barbed-wire complex off of a two-lane road in Grafton, OH. After having our instruments checked and re-checked at security, we were led to a chapel deep in the complex to set up. Inmates on work duty assisted us with chairs, amps, microphones, and soon we were set, and the room was filled with nearly 100 men. The concert was essentially a “reward” for good behavior and their positive mentorship effects on incoming inmates. The video below tells the rest of our story. We ended the day at the Cuyahoga County Juvenile Detention Center, filling the walls of a gymnasium with sounds of hope and words of encouragement for more than 250 incarcerated young people
Music heals, and gives hope. For these men, it also offered dignity and a chance to experience rare beauty in the stark world in which they reside.
Yesterday, Eric returned to northeast Ohio to perform for a fundraiser for a home for the elderly. I had the opportunity to join to CIM-trained colleagues in bringing his music to many more enthusiastic ears!
For more information, check out ericgenuis.com