Summer music camp going digital

Local News

URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) — Girls Rock C-U will be moving to a virtual format for the summer in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Essie Steinbacher, who has spent years playing piano, took up drumming last summer at camp.

“I liked that you could sometimes play someone else’s music and sometimes play your own that you think sounds good, and you can show other people what you did,” she said.

Her dad, John, hopes she can continue learning this summer.

“My interest in Essie being part of this camp and do the music is partially because I want her to experience something I feel like I missed out on when I was a kid,” John said.

This would have been the third summer for the music camp. Organizers are now working on a free weeklong virtual camp. They are asking parents to fill out a survey to let them know what kind of programming to set up. Options include live one-on-one lessons, recorded lessons and a virtual lunchtime concert featuring local artists.

“This is the perfect time to foster a new skill and look inward and express that,” organizer Christine Pallon said. “I mean, it is a tool for expressing frustration with the world and whatever you might be feeling.” 

Essie is finding her voice at home through the piano.

“I learned a song on piano, and then I changed the lyrics so they fit being in quarantine,” Essie said. “Some of the lyrics are about everybody’s stressed out, but then everybody also wants to help people.”

If you’re interested in being an instructor, hosting a virtual workshop or helping organizers out, you can email with the subject line “GRCU Virtual Summer Camp Programming.”

To fill out a survey with suggestions for Girls Rock C-U’s virtual camp, click here.

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