"I love it here," she says. "I love doing this."
Eniko Jonas came to the United States from Hungary 17 years ago with a degree in music education and a desire to teach. Originally, she taught a special program for kids, called "Music Together," all around Orange -- from High Plains Community Center to Shagbark Nursery School. But she decided the best way to grow was to have her own studio, a place all her own where students could come to learn.
The logical next step was a storefront. This summer, she opened the Orange Music Studio at 501 Boston Post Road. Nestled next to Windsong Exotic Birds (full of parrots and other birds who offer music of their own), it's Orange's newest destination for serious students interested in learning piano, guitar, and other instruments -- or for young children to discover the joy of music for the first time.
"Music is a language," says Jonas. The "Music Together" program is the first lesson in that language for children from birth to five years old. Originally launched in 1987, it introduces them to singing, dancing, rhythm and motion using everything from drums, triangles and bells to hula hoops. (She discovered the program while looking for a fun, effective way to educate her young children in music.)
"It teaches basic music competence -- the ability to clap to the beat, march to the beat," says Jonas. "It's a great introduction for the children … It's amazing how much easier it is to teach them the piano or any other instrument."
Jonas hosts the program Tuesday, Friday and Saturday mornings (for times and more information, see Orange Music Studio's website.) Now in the second week of its fall semester, the program is still accepting registration for families.
And Jonas says the studio continues to grow. She's brought on additional teachers to help train Orange's budding musicians. (Andrea teaches violin and fiddle. Zack teaches guitar, saxophone and clarinet.) Show Your Card, the library program running through the month of September, has brought in new students for her. (Customers who show their library card at Orange Music Studio will receive a free music lesson.)
For more information, or to register for Orange Music Studio lessons (including Music Together), call (203) 799-0002 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.