Music program making a difference in small southern Alberta community
CTV Calgary Staff
Published Wednesday, June 7, 2017 10:44AM MDT
Last Updated Wednesday, June 7, 2017 1:53PM MDT
At the elementary school in Cayley, just south of High River, every child learns to play the fiddle because of Barb Haney.
Haney is in charge of the music program at the school and was teaching music at a much larger school in High River when she heard there was an opening.
Being a violin and fiddle player herself, Haney was excited to go to the smaller school to teach kids the joys of playing the instrument and says she loves being involved in the tightly-knit community.
“Many of the parents and grandparents in this community also play instruments, maybe not the fiddle but lots of guitars and it's a wonderful connection, fiddle, especially to our history here in this area and when we have a concert the entire community comes,” she said.
Teagan Symon says she begged her mom for a violin even before she started school.
“My mom decided, wow there's a school, has great education and it has a violin program so I learned how to play the violin,” she said.
Haney uses old favorite fiddle tunes to add to the enjoyment for kids like Roy McLean.
“It’s fun and you get to do different things and stuff,” he said.
Before Haney came to Cayley School, Fay Mascher got things rolling when she learned that the Calgary Board of Education had a lot of good violins available.
Mascher says Haney is the perfect one to bring it all together.
“Barb is a perfect combination of music specialist, fiddler, warm wonderful individual that makes this program thrive,” said Mascher.
Haney says she couldn't do it without great support.
“The Odd Fellows lodge in Cayley has been incredibly generous with us. They have helped us purchase violins and they help with the cost of maintaining the violins,” she said.
She says the Calgary Foundation has also helped.
For all she does to help the kids at Cayley school make music, Barb Haney is our Inspiring Albertan this week.
(With files from Darrel Janz)