Piscatellos bring music to community

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By Kelly Cantrall



The News-Enterprise

For the Piscatello sisters, music is truly a family affair.

Sisters Alexis, Rachael, Lois and Claire Piscatello have each found a deep love for music, something that has blossomed from an early decision to give Alexis, 18, piano lessons.

Each of the sisters now plays piano, and each has expanded into other lessons — voice for Alexis, viola for Lois, 13, and violin for Rachael, 15. The cello has become an interest for Claire, 11, and she plans to begin lessons after she spends more time on her piano skills.

Their mother, Michelle, wanted Alexis to learn to read music, a skill she felt her daughter should have. Coming from musical parents, Michelle had wanted to pass on music to her children.

“I think I had hopes that we would have beautiful music in our home,” she said.

She began teaching Alexis to play the piano when Alexis was about 8 years old. She eventually began taking private lessons and her younger sisters followed suit.

Alexis enjoys the versatility of the instrument and the fact that it’s a good starting point for learning other instruments, she said.

The sisters enjoy sharing their music with others, from settings such as church to nursing homes to the Music and Arts Center of Cultural Learning’s youth orchestra. Alexis said she feels like it’s a higher calling.

“I feel like I’m using God’s gifts to me to bless others,” she said.

The girls sing together as well, a passion Alexis followed into voice lessons and is now planning to pursue in college as well.

The younger sisters have all been eager to expand their skills too. Rachael has always loved the sound of the violin, she said, and had a chance to study it for a week at the Southern Baptist Seminary String Camp.

“That’s what really made me say I want to learn this instrument,” she said.

Lois and Claire also have had the opportunity to study at the string camp, which deepened their interest in the viola and cello.

Rachael and Lois are the principle chairs for their instruments in the youth orchestra.

None of the younger girls think they will pursue music in college or professionally, but each is sure they will keep it up as a hobby.

Music isn’t just a skill they’re learning, but a pastime too. They gather around the piano when friends come over to sing and play, and they bring along a hymnal on trips.

Despite her hopes for beautiful music, Michelle’s daughters have taken their skills and passion to places she’d never imagined.

“I had no idea that the Lord would bless me so abundantly,” she said, with the gift of music.

Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747 or kcantrall@thenewsenterprise.com.