Roberson Middle School students Josh Hernandez, from left, Adam Celeridad, teacher Cindy Reiss-Riley and Kevin Bonilla are recipients of Mozart Hammond Scholarship Awards.
HOUSTON – Aug. 15, 2016 – This summer, three Roberson Middle School students were awarded scholarships for private piano lessons, giving these noteworthy young musicians a chance to pursue their music studies beyond the regular classroom setting.
The students – Kevin Bonilla, Adam Celeridad and Josh Hernandez – were among only a dozen recipients selected from across the Houston region to receive the scholarships, each ranging from $500 to $700. All three were officially recognized during a June 15 ceremony and recital held at the Houston Public Library’s Clayton Library Center.
Bonilla, Celeridad and Hernandez first began studying piano at Roberson with music teacher Cindy Reiss-Riley, who encouraged the boys to apply for the area-wide competition. “I am so very proud of them,” she said.
All three started piano as sixth graders, advancing quickly and distinguishing themselves in their classes at Roberson, where Reiss-Riley insists that great expectations can inspire students to succeed. “I want high standards for all the students,” she said, “and I don’t give in.”
The scholarships, awarded by the Houston Masonic Library & Museum Foundation and named in honor of Mozart Hammond – a well-known Houston-area musician, music educator and manager of the Houston Conservatory of Music until his death in 1982 – are designed both to recognize excellence in young musicians and to expand access to private music study.